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Surya Sen

September 13th, 2011 Comments off

Surya Sen
Surya Sen (alternatively Surjya Sen, Bangla: সূর্য সেন pronounced Surjo Sen) (March 22, 1894 – January 12, 1934) (also known as Masterda Surya Sen) (Bangla: মাস্টারদা সূর্য সেন) was a prominent Bengali freedom fighter, an Indian independence activist and the chief architect of anti-British freedom movement in Chittagong, Bengal (now in Bangladesh). He was born on 22 March 1894 in Chittagong district now in Bangladesh. He participated in nationwide non-cooperation movement as a revolutionary. He was arrested in February 1933 by British and was hanged on 12 January 1934. The Government of India released a commemorative stamp on him in 1977. Bangladesh issued a commemorative stamp on him in 1999.

Early life

His father’s name was Ramaniranjan. A resident of Noapara in Chittagong, he was a teacher by profession. He was initiated into revolutionary ideas in 1916 by one of his teachers while he was a student of Intermediate Class in the Chittagong College and joined the renowned revolutionary group Anushilan. But when he went to Behrampur College for BA course, came to know about Jugantar and became more inspired with their ideas. On his return to Chittagong in 1918, he organized Jugantar there.All revolutionary groups were using Indian National Congress as umbrella to work. Consequently in 1929, Surya Sen became the president of the Chittagong district committee of the Indian National Congress. He continued to organize the hardline patriotic organisations and first became a teacher of the National school in Nandankanan and then joined the Umatara school at Chandanpura. Hence, he was known as Mastarda (teacher brother).

By 1923 Surya Sen spread the revolutionary organization in different parts of Chittagong district. Aware of the limited equipment and other resources of the freedom fighters, he was convinced of the need for secret guerrilla warfare against the colonial Government. One of his early successful undertakings was a broad day robbery at the treasury office of the Bengal Assam Railway at Chittagong on December 23, 1923.

Chittagong armoury raid and its aftermath

His major success in the anti-British revolutionary violence was the Chittagong Armoury Raid on April 18, 1930. Subsequent to the raid, he marched to the Jalalabad hills along with his fellow revolutionaries. After the battle with the British troops on April 22, he escaped from there.

Surya Sen, being constantly followed up by the police, had to hide at the house of Sabitri Devi, a widow, near Patiya. A police and military force under Captain Cameron surrounded the house on 13 June 1932. Cameron was shot dead while ascending the staircase and Surya Sen along with Pritilata Waddedar and Kalpana Datta escaped to safety.

Surya Sen was always in hiding, moving from one place to another. Sometimes he used to take a job as a workman; sometimes he would take a job as a farmer, or milkman, or priest, houseworker or even as a pious Muslim. This is how he used to avoid being captured.

Either because of money, or out of jealousy, or because of both, Netra Sen told the British Government that Surya Sen was at his house. As a result, the police came and captured him on February 16, 1933. This is how India’s supreme hero was arrested. But before Netra Sen was able to get his 10,000-rupee reward he was killed by the revolutionaries.

This is how it happened. Netra Sen’s wife was all for Surya Sen, and she was horrified by her husband’s deed. She felt mortified by her husband’s betrayal of Surya Sen.

One evening she was serving her husband food when a great admirer of Surya Sen came into the house. He was carrying a very big knife, which is called a “daa”. With one stroke of the dal he chopped off the head of Netra Sen in the presence of his wife. Then slowly and stealthily he went away.

When the police arrived to investigate, they asked Netra Sen’s wife if she had seen who the murderer was. She said, “I saw with my own eyes, but my heart will not permit me to tell you his name. I am sorry. I feel miserable that I was the wife of such a treacherous man, such an undivine man as Netra Sen. My husband betrayed the greatest hero of Chittagong. My husband betrayed a great son of Mother India. My husband cast a slur on the face of India. Therefore, I cannot tell the name of the person who took his life. He has definitely done the right thing. You can do anything with me. You can punish me, you can even kill me, but I shall never tell the name of the person who killed my husband. Our Master-da will be hanged, I know, but his name will forever be synonymous with India’s immortal freedom-cry. Everybody loves him. Everybody adores him. I, too, love him and adore him, for he is the brightest sun in the firmament of Chittagong. Surya means sun and he is truly our sun.”[citation needed]

Tarakeswar Dastidar, the new president of the Chittagong Branch Jugantar Party, made a preparation to rescue Surya Sen from the Chittagong Jail. But the plot was unearthed and consequently frustrated. Tarakeswar and Kalpana along with others were arrested. Special tribunals tried Surya Sen, Tarakeswar Dastidar, and Kalpana Datta in 1933.

Surya Sen along with his Tarekeshwar Dastidar was hanged by the British rulers on January 12, 1934. Before the death sentence Surya Sen was brutally tortured. It was reported that the British executioners broke all his teeth with hammer and plucked all nails and broke all limbs and joints. He was dragged to the rope unconscious. After his death his dead body was not given any funeral. The prison authority, it was found later, put his dead body in a metallic cage and dumped into the bay of Bengal.

His last letter to his friends, written on 11 January, stated, “Death is knocking at my door. My mind is flying away towards eternity …At such a pleasant,at such a grave,at such a solemn moment,what shall I leave behind you? Only one thing,that is my dream,a golden dream-the dream of Free India…. Never forget the 18th of April,1930, the day of the eastern Rebellion in Chittagong… Write in red letters in the core of your hearts the names of the patriots who have sacrificed their lives at the altar of India’s freedom.

Memorials

The Government of Bangladesh designated the Chittagong Central Jail’s gallows as a memorial to Sen. There is also a station on the Kolkata Metro system in West Bengal, India named after him that is called ” Masterda Surya Sen”. There is a large park in Siliguri, India called “Surya Sen Park” in the middle of it is a bust of the revolutionary hero.

Chattal Seva Samity, Brasat (10 km north of Dum Dum airport & district HQ of 24 Parganas) erected a full length (15′ high) bronge statue of Masterda Surya Sen at the gate of Barasat Stadium on the 18th April 2010 where engraved “Bharat Gourav Masterda Surya Sen”. It was inaugurated by the 100+ year old legand & Masterda’s associate & follower Shree Binod Bihari Chowdhury in presence of Dr Asim Dasgupta, Finance Minister of West Bengal & other digniteries.

On March 6, 2011 a talk has been arranged on “the role & effect of Surya Sen & Preetilata in the Indian Independence Struggle” in the Preeti Sammelan (yearly get-together of Chittagong Languase speaking residents of North 24 Parganas) of Chattal Seva Samity at Barasat Stadium.

Nabin Chandra Bardoloi

September 13th, 2011 Comments off

Nabin Chandra Bardoloi
Nabin Chandra Bardoloi was a leader of congress party and an Indian independence activist. He was from Assam.The Government of India issued a postage stamp in his honour.

Omandur Ramasamy Reddiar

August 30th, 2011 Comments off

Omandur Ramasamy Reddiar (1895 – 1970) was an Indian freedom-fighter and politician of the Indian National Congress. He served as the Premier of Madras Presidency from March 23, 1947 to April 6, 1949.

Early life

Omandur Ramaswamy Reddiyar was born in 1895 in the village of Omandur near Tindivanam in the then South Arcot district of Madras Presidency. He belonged to a Telugu Reddy family domiciled in the Tamil country. He had his schooling at Walter Scudder school and entered the Indian independence movement at an early age.

Ramaswamy Reddiar was a devotee of Sri Ramana Maharshi.

As Chief Minister

Ramaswamy Reddiyar became the Chief Minister or Premier of Madras on March 23, 1947 and was in power till April 6, 1949. During his tenure, the Madras Temple Entry Authorization Act 1947 was passed.

This act was intended to give Dalits and other prohibited Hindus full and complete rights to enter Hindu temples.[3] This was approved by the Governor on May 11, 1947 and passed as Madras Act 5 of 1947. The Devadasi Dedication Abolition Act of 1947 put an end to the devadasi system that was in vogue in many Hindu temples.

It was during Reddiyar’s tenure that India achieved independence from the United Kingdom.Soon after independence and partition of India, there was a shortage of food grains, especially rice, in the province. In 1948, Reddiyar ordered the purchase of a de Havilland Dove, the first aeroplane to be owned by the Government of Madras.

In 1948, when the Congress legislative party elections were held, Reddiyar’s candidature was opposed by Tanguturi Prakasam. However, Reddiyar won with the support of K. Kamaraj. However, the Congress leaders were disgruntled with Reddiyar as he did not allow them special privileges. So, during the 1949 Congress Legislative Party elections, Kamaraj supported P. S. Kumaraswamy Raja against Reddiyar. Though Reddiyar was supported by C. Rajagopalachari, P. Subbarayan and T. Prakasam, he lost the vote and stepped down as Chief Minister.

Rise of Indian nationalism

August 27th, 2011 Comments off

By 1900, although the Congress had emerged as an all-India political organization, its achievement was undermined by its singular failure to attract Muslims, who felt that their representation in government service was inadequate. Attacks by Hindu reformers against religious conversion, cow slaughter, and the preservation of Urdu in Arabic script deepened their concerns of minority status and denial of rights if the Congress alone were to represent the people of India. Sir Syed Ahmed Khan launched a movement for Muslim regeneration that culminated in the founding in 1875 of the Muhammadan Anglo-Oriental College at Aligarh, Uttar Pradesh (renamed Aligarh Muslim University in 1920). Its objective was to educate wealthy students by emphasizing the compatibility of Islam with modern western knowledge. The diversity among India’s Muslims, however, made it impossible to bring about uniform cultural and intellectual regeneration.

The nationalistic sentiments among Congress members led to the movement to be represented in the bodies of government, to have a say in the legislation and administration of India. Congressmen saw themselves as loyalists, but wanted an active role in governing their own country, albeit as part of the Empire. This trend was personified by Dadabhai Naoroji, who went as far as contesting, successfully, an election to the British House of Commons, becoming its first Indian member.

Bal Gangadhar Tilak was the first Indian nationalist to embrace Swaraj as the destiny of the nation[citation needed]. Tilak deeply opposed the then British education system that ignored and defamed India’s culture, history and values. He resented the denial of freedom of expression for nationalists, and the lack of any voice or role for ordinary Indians in the affairs of their nation. For these reasons, he considered Swaraj as the natural and only solution. His popular sentence “Swaraj is my birthright, and I shall have it” became the source of inspiration for Indians.

In 1907, the Congress was split into two factions. The radicals led by Tilak advocated civil agitation and direct revolution to overthrow the British Empire and the abandonment of all things British. The moderates led by leaders like Dadabhai Naoroji and Gopal Krishna Gokhale on the other hand wanted reform within the framework of British rule. Tilak was backed by rising public leaders like Bipin Chandra Pal and Lala Lajpat Rai, who held the same point of view. Under them, India’s three great states – Maharashtra, Bengal and Punjab shaped the demand of the people and India’s nationalism. Gokhale criticized Tilak for encouraging acts of violence and disorder. But the Congress of 1906 did not have public membership, and thus Tilak and his supporters were forced to leave the party.

But with Tilak’s arrest, all hopes for an Indian offensive were stalled. The Congress lost credit with the people. A Muslim deputation met with the Viceroy, Minto (1905–10), seeking concessions from the impending constitutional reforms, including special considerations in government service and electorates. The British recognized some of the Muslim League’s petitions by increasing the number of elective offices reserved for Muslims in the Indian Councils Act 1909. The Muslim League insisted on its separateness from the Hindu-dominated Congress, as the voice of a “nation within a nation.”

Sonia Gandhi

July 27th, 2011 Comments off

Sonia Gandhi is the leader of the Congress Party in India.

Although Sonia could have become the first foreign-born Indian Prime Minister, she declined the opportunity.

In the May 2005 Parliamentary Elections to the Lok Sabha, the lower house of the Indian Parliament, Sonia led the Congress Party to victory over the ruling BJP.

Sonia’s victory was aided by anti-incumbency sentiments as well as the large-scale disenchantment of millions of people belonging to the lower classes, who have been mostly left behind in the economic reforms exercise of the BJP.

Sonia’s rapid rise in the political arena highlights two interesting aspects of Indian politics – In a country, where Hindus account for a majority of the population, Indian voters have not hesitated to embrace a Roman Catholic Videshi (Hindi word for foreigner).

Sonia’s quick rise to the top of the Congress party illustrates the weakness of the Congress party and indeed the Indian political system. As political scientists like Samuel Huntington have written, in mature political systems the path to the top often takes decades during which time the leader gains experience in lesser positions and learns the art of governance in the process.

Sonia has so far had very limited experience in the rough and tumble of politics and almost no experience in the art of governance. This raises questions of how effective Sonia can be as head of the ruling party of a complex nation like India with its myriad castes and religions and multitude of problems.

If Sonia had become Prime Minister, she would have been the fourth member of the Nehru-Gandhi family to become Prime Minister of India following in the footsteps of Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi.

congress party

July 24th, 2011 No comments

The oldest Indian political party, the Indian National Congress was formed in 1885 and was the most powerful force behind the country’s struggle for independence It also held power for most years after independence. The party has also been instrumental in the making or fall of non-Congress governments at the centre when it was out of power.

Sonia GandhiThe Party boasts of the leadership of what can be said the first political family of the country. The dynasty goes back to the time of Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister. His daughter, Indira Gandhi, active during the years of the freedom struggle was the natural heir to the throne. The suspension of democratic institutions during emergency earned her many critics and also led to the birth of many anti-Congress factions. Indira Gandhi was assassinated in 1984. Rajiv Gandhi, then a political novice, swept the polls through the apparent sympathy wave. His tragic assassination again brought the Congress to power in 1991, with PV Narasimha Rao as the Prime Minister. The Congress popularity nose-dived mainly due to the involvement of its leaders, including Narasimha Rao, in the vote buying case during a confidence vote and other corruption charges.

In 1999 Mrs. Sonia Gandhi entered politics and took the reins of the party. This was the time when the party most needed the support of the Nehru -Gandhi Family. Now she has matured in the game and is again leading the party in General Elections 2004. The party in her leadership plans the comeback to power.

The main agendas for the elections are

* Generation of more jobs
* Eradication of poverty
* Step up public investment in agriculture
* One-third reservation for women
* Commission for the problems of North Eastern States

ideology and policies

September 20th, 2010 Comments off

Ideology and policies

Historically, the party has favored farmers, laborers, labor unions, and religious and ethnic minorities; it has opposed unregulated business and finance, and favored progressive income taxes. However, in recent years the party had adopted centrist economic and social democratic agenda. Today, the INC advocates neo-liberal policies which includes populism, social liberalism, secularism and free enterprise system with government regulations such as public–private partnership (PPP) model. Though it still believes in eradicating poverty, illiteracy and strongly supports the weaker section of the society.

Social policy

Social policy of the INC is based on Gandhian concept of Sarvodaya (upliftment of all sections of the society.) In particular INC gives special emphasis on the welfare of the economically and socially disadvantaged sections of the society. This includes “affirmative action” reservations for weaker sections of the society in education and employment, emphasis on employment generation for rural population (through schemes such as National Rural Employment Generation Scheme) etc. The party supports family planning with birth control but opposes elective abortion, in particular sex selective abortions and late term abortions.

Economic policy

Traditionally, Economic policy of the INC emphasized on the importance of the public sector aimed at establishing a “socialistic pattern of society”. However, since the economic liberalizations initiated by Dr. Manmohan Singh, the then Finance Minister in the early 1990s, the economic policy of INC has been changed somewhat and it is now adopted free market policies, though at the same time it is in favour of taking a cautious approach in proceeding with liberalization to ensure that the weaker sections are not affected too hard by the liberalization process.

Foreign policy
Traditionally, nonalignment has been the bedrock of the foreign policy of the INC.

Internal organization
The organization developed by Mohandas Gandhi’s reorganization of the Congress in the years of 1918 to 1920 has largely been retained till today.
In every Indian state and union territory or pradesh, there is a Pradesh Congress Committee, which is the provincial unit of the party, responsible for directing political campaigns at local and state levels and assisting the campaigns for Parliamentary constituencies. Each PCC has a Working Committee of 10-15 key members, and the state president is the leader of the state unit. The Congressmen elected as members of the states legislative assemblies form the Congress Legislature Parties in the various state assemblies, and their chairperson is usually the party’s nominee for Chief Ministership.

The All India Congress Committee is formed of delegates sent from the PCCs around the country. The delegates elect various Congress committees, including the Congress Working Committee, which consists of senior party leaders and office bearers, and takes all important executive and political decisions.

The President of the Indian National Congress is in effect the party’s national leader, head of the organization, head of the Working Committee and all chief Congress committees, chief spokesman and the Congress choice to become the Prime Minister of India.

Constitutionally, the president is to be elected by the vote of the PCCs and members of the AICC. However, this procedure has often been by-passed by the Working Committee, choosing to elect its own candidate as an emergency measure.

The Congress Parliamentary Party is the group of elected MPs in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha.It is headed by senior Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee. Since the current Prime Minister Dr.Manmohan Singh is not an elected member of the Lok Sabha, Pranab is the CPP president. Dr.Singh is Leader of the Rajya Sabha. There is also a CLP leader in each state. The CLP (Congress Legislative Party) consists of all MLAs in each state. It also comes under the CPP so Pranab is head of the MLAs also.In cases of states where the Congress is single-handedly ruling the government,the CLP leader is the Chief Minister.

sonia meets mamata seeks assurance on womens bill vote

September 17th, 2010 Comments off

sonia gandhi n mamtha benarjee

sonia gandhi n mamtha benarjee

Ruling United Progressive Alliance (UPA) chairperson Sonia Gandhi met Railway Minister Mamata Banerjee Wednesday and sought an assurance that her Trinamool Congress will vote for the Women’s Reservation Bill in the Lok Sabha, Congress sources said.

The meeting at Gandhi’s 10 Janpath official residence that Congress sources described as “cordial and positive” comes in the wake of Trinamool Congress MPs abstaining from voting for the bill in the Rajya Sabha Tuesday.

“The meeting was cordial and the outcome was positive,” a senior Congress leader, who was present at the meeting, told IANS.

Gandhi had expressed surprise at Banerjee’s last-minute objections to the bill.

The Congress president said she had been told by a minister who sat next to Banerjee at the last cabinet meeting that she was very “enthusiastic” about the bill.

The Trinamool Congress, with 19 MPs in the Lok Sabha and two in the Rajya Sabha, is the largest ally of the UPA government. The party’s stand could be crucial in ensuring that the bill sails through the Lok Sabha, which is the next hurdle for the legislation to become a law.

The Women’s Reservation Bill was passed in the Rajya Sabha Tuesday. The bill, which seeks to set aside for women 181 of the 543 seats in the Lok Sabha and 1,370 of the 4,109 seats in the 28 state assemblies, is expected to be tabled in the Lok Sabha next week.

It is being opposed by parties that mainly have their support base in the Hindi heartland of northern India, but enjoys majority support from the opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Left parties.

Indian Youth Congress

September 11th, 2010 No comments

The Indian Youth Congress is the youth wing of the Indian National Congress Party. As of 2009, the Indian Youth Congress has over 20,000,000 members across India, the largest democratic youth organisation in the world.

The Indian Youth Congress was a department of the Indian National Congress from the period just after 1947 until the late 1960s. While prime minister, Indira Gandhi gave the Youth Congress a new dimension by establishing it as a frontal organisation of the Congress Party, with the objective of doing social work and arguing against right-wing parties. Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi was the first elected President of the Indian Youth Congress; he later became Minister of Information and Broadcasting and Parliamentary affairs in the Indian Cabinet. Narayan Dutt Tiwari was the first President.

During the 1970s, under the leadership of Sanjay Gandhi, the Youth Congress undertook activities such as tree plantation, family planning, and fought against domestic violence and dowry deaths. After the death of Sanjay Gandhi, Rajiv Gandhi took over in charge of the Youth Congress. After he became prime minister in 1984, Rajiv Gandhi reduced the voting age to 18.

The Indian Youth Congress has its headquarters in Delhi, and is presently headed by Rajiv Satav. There are 29 office bearers at the national level, followed by the state, district and block level. The Indian Youth Congress has a unit in all 8800 blocks of the country.

Gandhi, Nehru and Other Great Youth Leaders

Indian history has seen many of its youth leading political movements. Jawaharlal Nehru became leader of the Indian National Congress, and was one of the most popular leaders in northern India at a very young age. He took his inspiration from Mohandas Gandhi, who also became politically active in his youth. Indian youth were extremely active in their country’s struggle for independence. In 1942, the greatest youth uprising took place, mainly among students, who participated in the Quit India movement organised by leaders of the All India Congress, demanding complete independence from Britain.