Lal Bahadur Shastri : Life, Death and Achievements
Lal Bahadur Shastri was the second Prime Minister of independent India and was greatly influenced by Gandhi. His motto was “Jai Jawan Jai Kisan“.
Lal Bahadur Shastri had devoted more than 30 years to the country and was known for his loyalty and ability. He was a man of great inner strength, humility, and long-suffering. He understood the language of the people and had a vision for the progress of the country.
- Born: October 2, 1904
- Place of birth: Mughalsarai, Varanasi, Uttar Pradesh
- Father: Sharada Prasad Srivastava
- Mother: Ramdulari Devi
- Wife: Lalita Devi
- Political Association: Indian National Congress
- Movement: Indian freedom struggle
- Died: January 11, 1949
- Memorial: Vijay Ghat, New Delhi
Lal Bahadur Shastri was born on October 2, 1904 in Varanasi, UP. He was the second Prime Minister of independent India and therefore the leader of the Indian National Congress Party.
Brief Biography Lal Bahadur Shastri
Lal Bahadur Shastri studied at East Railway Inter College in Mughalsarai and Varanasi. He graduated from Kashi Vidyapeeth in 1926. The Vidya Peeth gave the meaning of “Shastri” to the “scholar” on the bachelor’s degree but the title was named after Shastri. Shastri was strongly influenced by Mahatma Gandhi and Tilak.
He got married to Lalitha Devi on 16 May 1928. He became a life member of Lok Sevaks (Lok Sevak Mandal) founded by Lala Lajpat Rai. There he started working for the upliftment of backward classes and later became the president of that community.
Shastri joined the Indian independence movement within the 1920s and took part within the non-cooperation movement. He was briefly imprisoned by the British.
He also participated in the Salt Satyagraha in 1930, for which he was imprisoned for more than two years. In 1937 he joined the organizing secretary of the Parliamentary Board of UP. After Mahatma Gandhi gave his Quit India speech in Mumbai, he was sent back to prison in 1942. He was kept in jail till 1946. Shastri spent a total of nine years in prison while in prison, he read books and was familiar with the works of Western philosophers, revolutionaries and social reformers.
After the independence of India, Lal Bahadur Shastri joined UP. In 1947 he became Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Police and Transport. As a Minister of Transport, he appointed women conductors for the first time. As the minister in charge of the police department, he issued an order that the police should use water jets and not use firewood to disperse angry crowds.
In 1951, Shastri was appointed General Secretary of the All India Congress Committee succeeds in conducting election campaigns and other activities. In 1952, he was elected to the Rajya Sabha from UP. As Minister of Railways, he installed the first machine in 1955 at the Integral Coach Factory in Chennai.
In 1957, Shastri ji again became the Minister of Transport and Communications and later Minister of Commerce and Industry. When appointed as the Home Minister in 1961, he appointed the Anti-Corruption Commission. He created the famous “Shastri Formula” which included the language movements of Assam and Punjab.
In 1964 on June 9, Lal Bahadur Shastri became the Prime Minister of India. He promoted the White Revolution, a national campaign to extend milk production. He promoted the revolution to extend food production in India.
Shastri Nehru’s policy of non-alignment continued but remained in contact with the Soviet Union. In 1964, he signed an agreement with the Prime Minister of Sri Lanka, Sirimavo Bandaranaike, on the situation of Indian Tamils in Ceylon. This agreement is known as the Sreemao-Scientific Treaty.
In 1965, Shastri officially visited Rangoon, Burma, and established good relations with General Ni’s military government. During his rule, India faced another attack from Pakistan in 1965. He gave the security forces the freedom to retaliate, and became known as “Facing the Army.” The Indo-Pak war ended on September 23, 1965. On January 10, 1966, Russian Prime Minister Koshin, Lal Bahadur Shastri and Pakistani counterpart Ayub Khan were promised to sign the Tashkent Declaration.
Lal Bahadur Shastri Death
On 11th January, 1966, Lal Bahadur Shastri died of a heart attack. In 1966, he was posthumously awarded the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian honor.
Lal Bahadur Shastri was known as a man of great integrity and ability. He was humble and tolerant of the great inner strength of understanding the language of the common man. He greatly influenced the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi and was also a visionary who led the nations to progress.
Some Known Facts
- The 2nd Prime Minister of India Lal Bahadur Shastri shared his birthday with Mahatma Gandhi on October 2.
- He was awarded the title of ‘Shastri’ in 1926 at Kashi Vidyapeeth University, a symbol of the success of scholars.
- Shastri moved to go to school twice a day and tie a book over his head as he did not have enough money to buy a boat.
- When Lal Bahadur Shastri was the Uttar Pradesh minister, he was the first to use water jets to scatter crowds instead of lathicharges.
- He went to jail for participating in the non-Kuppertina movement during the freedom struggle with Gandhi ji, but was abandoned at the age of 17 because he was a minor.
- Involved in public transport for women drivers and conductors as Minister of Transport after Independence.
- At his wedding he accepted khadi cloth and charkha as dowry.
- He participated in the Salt March and was imprisoned for two years.
- The first committee of the Anti-Corruption Commission was started when he was the Home Minister.
- He integrated the concept of the Green Revolution to increase India’s demand for food production.
- He joined the freedom struggle in the 1920s and served as a prominent leader of the Indian National Congress.
- He also supported the White Revolution to increase milk production in the country. He created the National Dairy Development Board and supported the Amul Pal Cooperation based in Anand, Gujarat.
- On January 10, 1966, he signed the Tashkent Declaration with Pakistani President Mohammad Ayub Khan to end the 1965 war.
- He raised his voice against dowry and caste system.
- He was a much disciplined man with high self-esteem and morals. Even after becoming Prime Minister, he did not have a car.
Lal Bahadur Shastri has a long history as a freedom fighter, nationalist and national leader. At that time, he focused mainly on the country’s basic economic problems – food shortages, poverty and unemployment.
Incidentally, on October 2, he shares his birthday with Mahatma Gandhi.
Since the signing of the Tashkent Agreement on January 11, 1966, Shastri’s death has remained a mystery, although officially a heart attack had been reported.
He was posthumously awarded the Bharat Ratna, the first person to receive the most prestigious civilian award in India.
Takshila Learning celebrates this great leader of India on his death anniversary and keeps up his spirit of freedom. Lal Bahadur Shastri was a fighter who fought for the nation’s issues and tried to set them right effectively for the benefit of mankind. Let us all pay our respect to this great personality on this day and identify his tireless efforts for a harmonious and liberated country.
Takshila Learning remembers Lal Bahadur Shastri for his efforts and contributions for an Independent nation.
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