Wednesday, 10 August 2016

Eventful Augustan month and India

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"We are made wise not by the recollections of the past, but by the responsibilities  of our future".     
                                                   ..............   George Bernard Shaw

 The month August is named after Emperor Augustus to whom it was an eventful month because great, memorable  events took pace during that month.  As for the Hindus, the month of August has the following auspicious  days: Nag Panchami (Aug 07, 2016), Varalakshmi Vratam  (Aug 12, 2016),  Raksha-Bandhan (Aug 18, 2016) and  Krishna Janmashtami - birth of Sri Krishna (Aug 25, 2016). All these annual festivals fall in August. 'Avaniavitam" is an important ceremony  during which  Brahmins discard the old Sacred Thread and put on the new one across their shoulder, while chanting mantras.This one comes annually in August.  Part of August (till the end of  Tamil month Aadi, ending in the second week of August), wedding celebrations, opening of a new business etc won't be done by the Hindus. It is a sort of taboo. 

When we go deep into the history of India, lots of memorable events took place in August such as Government of India Act (02 August 1858), Indian Independence Act (15 August 1947), Partition of India (15 August 1947) etc.  Such events are well etched in time and are relevant to our present. It'll give  you just a glimpse how much sufferings and sacrifices our forefathers  went through so that the future generation could breathe fresh air. Our leaders of past are really worthy of emulation as they were patriotic to the core and cared for the welfare of the people. Corruption and nepotism were rare. Do our present day politicians emulate those great men in letter and spirit? As for the present political situation, we have become despondent, groping in the dark.

The following are the great events in our country taken place in August before independence:
James Lancaster commanded the first East India Company voyage in 1601.en.wikipedia.org
East India company flag. 1600 en.wikipedia.org
.. On 24th August 1608, the first representative of the East India landed in Surat for purposes of trade.

..The East India Company, a British joint stock company  was founded in 1600 to engage in trade with the East Indies (a term used to refer to South and South East Asia), but primarily ended up carrying out trade with the Indian subcontinent, the North West Frontier provinces and Baluchistan.

.. On 30th August 1659, Mughal Emperor Shah Jahan’s son Dara Shikoh was put to death by his younger brother Aurangzeb 

.. On Aug 15, 1772: The East India Company took the decision for separate civil and criminal courts in districts.
Maharaja Nandakumar en.wikipedia.org
.. On August 05 1775: Maharaja Nandakumar was unfortunately hanged in Calcutta (now Kolkata)  for purported forgery by the British. He was was a collector of taxes  and a Diwan for various areas in what is now West Bengal. Nanda Kumar was born at Bhadrapur. He became  India's first victim of hanging under British rule. The judge who gave the verdict was Elijay Inpey, a close  friend of  Lord Warren Hastings who had a row with Nadkumar who wanted to expose Hastings' corrupt practices. Both Hastings and Judge Impey were impeached by the British Parliament for dereliction of duty and miscarriage of justice for punishing an innocent man.

.. Dwarkanath, related to Rabindranath Tagore was a rich man of character and wisdom. He wanted to start a railroad company on his own. He developed passion for his proposed project. He visited England in March 1845 to  prevail upon the bosses of East India Company to grant permission to start construction  of the railway line. He was not given permission. He returned to India with a broken heart and died in August.

 1854: East India Railway ran its first passenger train from Calcutta (now Kolkata) to Hooghly, /en.wikipedia.org
.. On15 August 1854: East India Railway ran its first passenger train from Calcutta (now Kolkata) to Hooghly,  Covering a distance of 37 km, the train left Howrah station at 8:30 a.m. and reached Hooghly in 91 minutes.This line was officially inaugurated in 1855- Aug 16. Imported locomotive was used; whereas three first-class and two second-class coaches, three trucks for third-class passengers and a brake van for the guard, all of these were built in India.
The Government of India Act 1858Royal assent 2 August 1858en.wikipedia.org
On August 2, 1858.The Government of India Act 1858 was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom (21 & 22 Vict. c. 106) passed on August 2, 1858. This is regarding the liquidation of the British East India Company (who ran the proxy government for the Crown) and the transference of its functions to the British Crown.  Lord Palmerston was the then-Prime Minister of the United Kingdom at that time who introduced the bill.

.. On August 5 1858 The British Crown took control of India from the EIC. soon after Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 that began in Meerut cantonment. Because of poor handling by the EIC officials, it spread like wild fire and engulfed the north.
Sepoy Mutiny.www.slideshare.net
.. On Aug 20 1917 - In the midst of the Kaiserian  world war His majesty made the famous announcement on Aug 20, 1917- the goal of the British  policy was the progressive realization of responsible government for India as an integral part of the British Empire. The conciliatory efforts by the British govt. were rendered nugatory by the conservatives. Manacled and diluted, the Montague-Chelmsford reforms became a subject of Criticism. Annie Besant said it was unworthy of Britain to offer and India to accept it.

The Jallianwalla  bagh massacre, Punjab  triggered non-cooperation movement. several hundred innocent people shot dead with exit point closed. Gen, Dyre was the mass killer.www.facts-about-india.com
.. August 01 1920: The Jallianwalla  Bagh events and Khilafat movements had aggravated the political situation to a higher level.
The non-cooperation Movement was firmly launched on 1 August, 1920. Tilak passed away in the early hours of 1 August, and the day of mourning and of launching of the movement merged www.mahatmagandhiji.com
On August 20 1920 Gandhi started non cooperation movement. It was almost total civil obedience struggle of 1930 that showed the mass power of the people. There was no iota of violence committed by the patriots. It was simply not cooperating with the ruling government.
Indian pacifist Mahatma Gandhi visits an agricultural exhibition in London. Picture shows him with a goat, which he has acquired. Photograph. UK. 1934. (Photo by Imagno/Getty Images) Der indische Pazifist Mahatma Gandhi was fond of goat milk.  www.facts-about-india.com
January 01, 1934 Licence
.. On August 21, 1931 Gandhi  as a sole rep of the Congress sailed for London to take part in the 2nd round table congress with his loin clothes on. The conference  was a failure. As for Churchill, it was a chance for him to call Gandhiji as "Seditious half naked fakir". Gandhiji returned to India disappointed, but personally he won the heart of the British People, in particular, the labor class. There he met people like Bernard Shaw and Charlie Chaplin.

.. In August 1932 Gandhi wrote a strong letter to PM Ramsey Mac Donald  protesting against  his proposal of Communal Award whereby the Harijans (untouchables in India) should be segregated from the Hindus. Gandhiji went on a fast unto death that finally ended up in Yarawada  jail.
www.slideshare.net
.. Yerawada pact (An agreement between Babasaheb Dr. Ambedkar and Mahatma Gandhi signed on 24 September 1932 at Yerwada Central Jail in Pune (now in Maharashtra), India. It was also signed by Pt. Madan Mohan Malviya and B.R. Ambedkar and some Dalit leaders to break the fast unto death undertaken by Gandhi in Yerwada prison. The idea was  to annul the Macdonald Award, giving separate electorates to Dalits for electing members of state legislative assemblies in British India. A foxy move by the British bobs.


.. In August 1941: Linlitgow, His Majesty's rep made an offer of inviting some Indians to join his cabinet to set a War Advisory council. It was rejected by the Indian leaders. It was a ruse to drag the Indians into war. India had the best and efficient military officers and soldiers.

.. On Aug.08 1942 in Bombay:  Quit India moment resolution was passed at the AIC meeting; a flag to be unfurled to  declare a new nation was born. Following day Gandhi and others were taken away to unknown place. The Congress and other organizations were declared illegal followed  by a spate of arrests. Draconian laws were promulgated. There was strict suppression of political meetings, etc. Violence was let lose on the freedom fighters. There were arrests  galore across India and the prisons were full. 
Mahadev Desaikashivishvavidyalay.wordpress.com
Mahadev Desai, a close confidant of Gandhiji died as he was beaten up severely by the British police. He died in the Aga Khan palace that was converted in to a make-shift prison. Desai (1 January 1892 – 15 August 1942) was an Indian independence activist, writer and personal secretary to Gandhiji. He has often been tagged  as "Gandhi's Boswell, a Plato to Gandhi's Socrates, as well as an Ananda to Gandhi's Buddha".
Desai and Gandhiji. en.wikipedia.org/w

likesuccess.com
..
On Aug 01, 1920 Bala Gangadar Tilak died. Tilak, was an Indian nationalist, teacher, social reformer, lawyer and an independence activist and he worked with lots of freedom fighters. He was helpful to V.O. Chidambaram of Tamil Nagu (them Madras) when he started the Swadeshi shipping company to run  steam ships between Colombo and Tuticorin (Toothukudi). He was the first leader of the Indian Independence Movement. The British colonial authorities called him "Father of the Indian unrest."
Surendranath Banerrjee alchetron.com
.. On Aug 08, 1925Surendranath Banerrjee (10 November 1848 – 6 August 1925), a great freedom fighter and eloquent speaker passed away; he  was one of the earliest Indian political leaders during the British Raj. He founded the Indian National Association,  and later became a senior leader of the Indian National Congress.
Tagore . pics.onemusic.tv
.. In Aug, 1941 Rabindranath Tagore, poet and Nobel laureate died. He was a great nationalist and and lover of humanity. Made valid contribution to Bengali literature and music, as well as Indian art with Contextual Modernism in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Author of Gitanjali and its "profoundly sensitive, fresh and beautiful verse". First non-European to win the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1913.

..On 15 August 1947, India after Partition was declared independent of British rule and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru was sworn in as the first Prime Minister of independent India.
Independence of India was preceded by the partition of British India on the basis of religious demographics.
 The British who entered India as unassuming traders at last left India centuries later and at the fag end of their rule saw to it the Indian Subcontinent was divided into two nations one Democratic Nation - India and  the  other  being  Pakistan  simply based on
religion (Theocracy).
Indian independence day August 15, 1947. PM Nehru and Lord Mountbatton, www.fullyindia.com


 Tit-Bits - international: 

 .. August 1, 1838 - Slavery was abolished in Jamaica. It had been introduced by Spanish settlers 300 years earlier in 1509.

.. August 3, 1492 - Christopher Columbus set sail from Palos, Spain, with three ships, Nina, Pinta and Santa Maria. He wanted to find  a westerly route to the Far East, he instead landed on October 12th in the Bahamas, thinking it was an outlying Japanese island.

..  August 5, 1962 - Glamorous  movie star Marilyn Monroe died. Cause:An overdose of sleeping pills. She made 29 films during her career and came to symbolize Hollywood glamour  and her diamond song was a hit. She was just 36.

  .. August 15, 1762  Birthday -  Emperor Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) France, was born on the island of Corsica.  Earlier in his career an officer in King Louis' Army, he rose to become Emperor amid the political chaos that followed the French Revolution. 

..  August, 1901 Jazz trumpet player Louis Armstrong (1901-1971) was born in New Orleans.
Ref:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Indian_independence_movement