3.PANDIT GOVIND BALLABH PANT
- Recently, a statue of freedom fighter GovindBallabh Pantwas unveiled at its new locationon a roundabout at the Pandit Pant Marg, New Delhi.
- The statue had to be relocated from its earlier location near Raisina Road circle as it’fell within the new Parliament building layout’
- Govind Ba llabh Pant is remembered as one of the country’s most prominentfreedom fighters and an administratorwho played a key role in shapingmodern India.
- He was the Premier of United Provinces (1937 – 1939), First ChiefMinister of Uttar Pradesh (1946 -1954) and Union Home Minister (1955 -1961) and was a recipient of the highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratnain1957.
- Pant was born on 10 September 1887 in Uttarakhand, at Almora.
- When he was 18 years old, he started serving as a volunteer at sessions of theIndian National Congress, looking up to GopalkrishnaGokhale andMadan Mohan Malaviyaas his idols.
- In 1907, he decided to study law, after receiving his degree, he started to practice law in Almora in 1910 and eventually moved to Kashipur.
- In Kashipur, he established an organisation called PremSabha,thatstarted working towards several reforms and also saved a school from shuttingdown due to non-payment of taxes to the British government.
CONTRIBUTION IN NATIONAL MOVEMENT:
- GovindBallabh Pant joined the Congress in December 1921 and soon joined thenon- cooperation movement.
- In 1930, he was imprisoned for organizing a Salt Marchinspired by Gandhi’searlier actions.
- He was elected to the Uttar Pradesh (then known as United Provinces) LegislativeAssembly as the candidate of the Swarajist Partyfrom Nainital.
- When in Government, he tried to bring in reforms which would do awaywith the Zamindari system.
- He also pleaded to the Government for lowering agricultural taxes onfarmers.
- He encouraged many cottage industriesin the country and raisedhis voice against the coolie-beggar law,which forced porters totransport the heavy luggage of British officials without any payment.
- Pant was always against a separate electorate for minorities,saying the step would further divide communities.
- During the Second World War, Pant tried to conciliate between Gandhi’sfaction,which advocated supporting the British Crown in their war effort, andSubash Chandra Bose’s faction, which advocated taking advantage of thesituation to expel the British Raj by any means necessary.
- In 1942 he was arrested again, this time for signing the Quit India resolution,and spent three years in Ahmednagar Fort along with other members of theCongress working committee until March 1945.
- Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru pleaded successfully for Pant’s release, on groundsof failing health.
- After independence, GovindBallabh Pant became the Chief Minister of UttarPradesh. He worked for the upliftment of the farmers and the eradication ofuntouchability.
- After the death of Sardar Patel, GovindBallabh Pant was made the HomeMinister in the Union Government.
- As a Home Minister, he championed the cause of Hindi as the nationallanguageor rashtrabhasha.