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The Truth about Bhagat Singh | By Dhruv Rathee

 

Truth About Bhagat Singh Ideology 


 23rd March 1931. It has been 90 years since that day when Rajguru, Sukhdev, and Bhagat Singh were martyred. Today, all of us know about Bhagat Singh. But he is one of the most misunderstood and misrepresented freedom fighters of our country. 


Many people put his photo as their profile picture. But hardly any of them have tried to understand his opinions, ideas, and ideologies. Let us try to understand Bhagat Singh better.  


 Whenever you hear the name 'Bhagat Singh', many of you associate it with words like weapons and violence. But do you know, friends, that Bhagat Singh was considered a fierce intellectual of his time?


 His friends said that whenever they saw him, he had a book in his hand. He had studied British, European, American, Russian literature at length. According to some estimates, he had read over 250 books before being arrested. And in the two years he spent in jail, he read more than 300 books. Not only for reading books, but Bhagat Singh was also renowned for his prose. For his writing. 


His articles were published in magazines such as Kirti, Akali, Veer Arjun and Pratap. They were the magazines of that time. What I mean to say is that Bhagat Singh was an intellectual of the highest order. But today if you ask someone to act like Bhagat Singh, they will play with their moustaches and fire finger guns. But did you know that Bhagat Singh had said that, "Bombs and pistols cannot bring revolution? Revolution's sword is sharpened on thoughts."


 But when do people talk about ideas and ideologies today? People are happy to project an intellectual revolutionary as a trigger-happy rebel. Three major ideologies of Bhagat Singh. Three major ideologies that Bhagat Singh believed in. 


     

  • Socialism, 

  • Atheism and 

  • Internationalism. 


  Bhagat Singh was very influenced by Karl Marx, Lenin, and Socialist ideologies. It pained him when he saw how society treated farmers, labourers, factory workers. It is for these downtrodden people that he wanted to fight. His inspiration comes across in his prize-winning essay of 1923 where he quotes Guru Govind Singh.


'Brave are those who fight for the downtrodden, Even if his limbs are torn apart, he does not surrender.' It means only those people are brave who fight against the injustice towards the poor sect of people. And even if he has to lose his limbs for his cause, he does not give up his struggle against injustice.   


Most of our freedom fighters prioritized getting freedom from the British Raj. And the debate on Social Justice was being put off for later. But Bhagat Singh believed that for a farmer and a labourer, it doesn't matter who rules or is in power. Whether it is a Britisher or an Indian.


 Exploitation is exploitation and it does not matter who the exploiter is. Whether the Head of State is Lord Reading or Sir Purushottamdas Thakurdas. The lives of farmers and labourers wouldn't change as long as exploitation continues. In his message of February 1931, Bhagat Singh says that Political Revolution is an indispensable precondition but the ultimate objective is a socialist revolution. His revolutionary party was called the Hindustan Republican Association. 


But Chandra Shekhar Azad and Bhagat Singh later added the word Socialist to make it Hindustan Socialist Republican Association. Bhagat Singh's strong dedication to his ideologies can be seen in his slogans. When the Assembly was bombed, Bhagat Singh and Batukeshwar Dutt had raised three slogans. Long Live the Revolution! Workers of the World Unite. and 'Down with Imperialism'. 


Similarly, during the trials, he raised slogans like 'Long Live Socialist Revolution' and 'Down With Imperialism'.   'This is my own and that a stranger’ is the calculation of the narrow-minded For the magnanimous-hearts however, the entire earth is a family’. 


There is a very famous couplet in Maha Upanishad and Rig Veda. You might have heard it. Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam.The whole world is one family. Internationalism is an ideology in which Bhagat Singh strongly believed in. He wrote an article which was titled Vishwa Prem (Love the World). published in a magazine from Calcutta, 'Matwala' in 1924. 


How great is the idea 'Let everyone be your own and no one be a stranger' How beautiful will that time be, when unfamiliarity would not remain in the world? The day when this idea is established, we'll be able to say that the world has reached its peak.  


 In this article, he praises the poet who first envisioned the idea of the world being one family. In today's world, where people call themselves nationalists, they have fallen to the level of Jingoism. Jingoism is a word that depicts the extreme form of nationalism. One stops trying to improve one's country, and is rather focused on humiliating other countries. 


Picking on other countries. The enmity between India and Pakistan now is nothing compared to the enmity between France and Germany. and between America and Japan when Bhagat Singh was alive. Bhagat Singh dreamt of a day when France and Germany would not fight each other. Instead, trade with each other. That day would be called the Zenith of Progress. A day when America and Japan will both exist, but will not fight each other. A day when Britishers and Indian will both live, but neither will rule over the other. 


In 1928, Bhagat Singh wrote an article in Kirti magazine titled: Different Ideologies of New Politicians. Where he talks about two leaders: Subhash Chandra Bose and Jawaharlal Nehru. Who were the new and emerging leaders of India. Bhagat Singh commented on their speeches at Bombay. 


Bhagat Singh called Subhash Chandra Bose an emotional Bengali and said that he romanticized India's beauty. About how great India used to be in days bygone. Bhagat Singh dismisses it as sentimentality. And contrasts it against Nehru's rational view. 


Pandit Jawaharlal says, "whichever country you visit, they believe that they have a special message for the world. England is trying to be the self-proclaimed teacher of 'Civilization' to the world." Bhagat Singh agreed with Nehru that if our logical understanding does not accept something, we should not follow that. 


Irrespective of whether it is written in the Vedas or the Quran. If you want to understand the ideas of Bhagat Singh in detail, you read his biography. 


In his 1927 article Religious Riots and their Solutions, Bhagat Singh talks about Egalitarianism. The poor people of the world, irrespective of ethnicity, race, religion or country have the same rights.   It is to their benefit that the discrimination on the basis of religion, colour, race, origin stops. And the power of the government is in their hands."   This brings us to yet another strong ideology of Bhagat Singh. Secularism and Atheism. On one hand Mahatma Gandhi was promoting the Indian version of secularism, Where the government will promote religion but would be impartial to it. The government will remain impartial for all religions. On the other hand, Bhagat Singh believed in the French version of secularism. Where there needs to a distance between the Government and religion always. 


This is actually the original definition of Secularism. The government should not have any stake in any religion because religion is a personal affair of an individual. Bhagat Singh and Bhagwati Charan Bohra focused on this while writing the manifesto of Naujawan Bharat Sabha.


 In the June 1927 issue of the Kirti magazine, Bhagat Singh wrote an article 'Religious Riots and their Solutions' spoke about the importance of this. If you want people to stop fighting among themselves, you have to show them the economic imbalance between the rich and the poor.   The poor farmers and labourers need to be explained that their real enemies are the Capitalists. 


This is the reason why when one of our freedom fighters Lala Lajpat Rai was turning towards communal politics, Bhagat Singh published a pamphlet, which had the poem The Lost Leader on one side and on the other side, Lala Lajpat Rai's photo was printed. 


Bhagat Singh's personal views on religion were explained by him in detail In his very famous article Why I Am An Atheist. He believed that if God made this world, why is there so much injustice; so much pain and suffering in the world? He warned the believers of all religions, to not name it as the Pleasure of God. He questions justice where people are punished for the crimes of their past lives. 


Here Bhagat Singh talks about the Theory of Jurisprudence. He argues that revenge as justice is a very outdated idea. That revenge is the way to justice is an ideology best left in the past. 


On the other hand, the Theory of Punishment where someone is punished for their wrongdoings, is also an ideology that is slowly eradicated from the world. The third is a Reformative Theory which is slowly being accepted in the world now. It is necessary for human progress. 


The reformative theory says that if someone has wronged someone, he should be reformed and converted into a peace-loving citizen. Bhagat Singh asks that if God converts a person into a cow, cat, dog, in his next life, how will the person be able to reform himself? Or if he is born into a poor family in the next life, how will he be able to stop his oppression? To have been born into a poor family, he would become ruthless. And then if he commits a crime, is not God to be blamed here? 


Nowadays many people stick Bhagat Singh's photo on their vehicles with the caption "It seems like I need to return". But Bhagat Singh was an atheist. He didn't believe in rebirth, reincarnation, heaven or hell. When he was going to sacrifice his life, he knew that it was the end. There would be nothing after that. But at the same time, Bhagat Singh said that a person can be killed but not his ideas. 


If you really idolise Bhagat Singh, friends, keeping his photo as your profile picture or sticking it on your car doesn't mean much. If you really respect Bhagat Singh, Read about his ideas. Try to understand the values that he used to follow and try to learn about them. Get to know his ideologies. And his dream to stop exploitation, start working towards it. Long Live the Revolution.


 Thank you…!!!

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