Think of the old videos that does the rounds all over the television media, the you tube posts, the Facebook post updates on either the 15th of August every year, yes the date India got its independence or maybe on the 26th January in all these years, when the Republic Day celebrations are on full swing. Yes, I am indeed talking about the old video clippings of Mahatma Gandhi walking ahead with a stick in his hands on his famous Dandi march and many more of them. Bewildered, as to what I am talking about?
In all these old clippings you might have encountered thousands of freedom thirsty freedom fighters walking alongside the famous stalwarts like Gandhi whose names we pretty conveniently chose to ignore and nothing was ever ever written on them.
One such man, a great revolutionary and a daredevil freedom fighter is whom we will be enlightening you about- The unsung & unknown martyr of the Indian Freedom Movement, Baba Genu Said.
Who was Baba Genu Said?
Baba Genu Said was a commoner in the pre independence era where he was associated with the working of the Congress party of the time along with being a worker in one of the cotton mills in Bombay in those days. (Bombay- currently called Mumbai). Quiz any of the Congress party members with his name, or maybe any political party member for that matter, I am sure his name would be nowhere in their memories even when his life message is so much of significance to everyone till date.
Baba Genu Said was an active participator in the array of protests that Congress party of those times were adept in, the protest against the import of the foreign make cloth from Britain.
While he came from a pretty poor family, If I may say that, he was once heard as saying that he was deeply hurt at the news of his mother’s death but was equally relieved that he would now get the much needed time and space to serve his nation to the fullest. That is what I call a REAL HERO.. a person denouncing personal good for the nation, who else did it apart from some handful we know about? He was so dedicated to the services of independence movement for our nation that he even did not let his brother’s marriage come and between and chose not to attend the same.
His early life
Baba Genu was a son of a farmer based in the Pune district of Maharashtra and he saw extreme poverty pretty early on in his life in lieu of the death of his father when he was just about two. After the family went into extreme poverty stricken condition, Baba Genu along with his siblings were left at the mercy of the villagers back home while their mother relocated to Mumbai and started off working as domestic help.
Due to the condition that hit Genu’s family while he was merely some years old, it resulted him into not gaining any kind of formal education as such, but that did not deter him from staying ignorant or unawre of the issues the country was facing at that moment.
After spending the initial years of his life in his village, Baba Genu took the next big step and relocated to Mumbai and started off working in a cotton mill as a worker. While his stay at the big city, his perspectives and views took shape which even an educated man sometimes fails to understand. He got extremely drawn towards the socio- politic- economic arguments of Mahatma Gandhi and understood its very significance as well.
While being an active part in the movement of independence himself, Baba Genu already understood the fact that the economics were the driving force for the Britishers which is helping them to rule the nation and thus, if somehow it was broken, the rule would end then and there.
He very well understood that the economic importance of India was linked to its political independence and maybe that is why he did not hesitate to lie his life in the path walking on which we celebrate the independence of our nation today. Extremely forgetful of what he and many more unknown names might have done so that we breath in a bondage free nation at the moment. Such a man he was!
The end of an era; Baba Genu is immortal and would remain so..
While an active member of the National Congress along with having the values that maybe most of us choose to ignore, Baba Genu laid his life as a true hero or rather a martyr for our nation on the fateful date of 12th December, 1930; fifteen years prior to when India saw the light of freedom. Baba Genu, you would be pained to know was crushed to death while he was trying to stop a speeding truck which was carrying foreign materials into India from Britain. It was at approximately 11 am that Baba Genu lay down on the road, striving to stop the truck from entering the soil of his motherland that he was crushed under the wheels by a pair of Britishers. The exact place however still remains, but the memory of the great man Baba Genu fails to strike a chord in our hearts yet now.
While the great Indian freedom fighter and revolutionary, almost uneducated you may say, died for the independence of our nation at the mere age of just 20s, don’t you think he needs that kind of appreciation and applaud? If not these people then whom should we take as role models, I really have no clue.
As for me, I am ashamed as maybe all of the Indians who do not have any idea who this man was or what he did for our nation, I would like to pay a silent tribute to one of the brave and strong freedom fighter that our nation might have ever seen.
Hat’s off Sir! Its better late than never….sometimes…