After approximately 200 years of slavery under the rule of the British, a slowly pent up emotion (the desire to live free) caused the large masses of Indian citizens to fight and gain independence on 15th August 1947. It was a time of revolution where all Indians united together and opposed British rule. We dedicate this day every year to all those freedom fighters who stood as leaders and guided India to freedom. On the 73rd Independence Day today, we look at six of the lesser-known leaders who took it upon themselves to unite Karnataka as a state towards freedom.
Considering Lokmanya Tilak as his idol in 1906, Gangadhara Rao Deshpande immediately sprang to action and became like a wake-up call for the people of Karnataka. This made him one of the first people in the state to take action in trying to implement Gandhi’s messages. An interesting fact is that he is called the ‘Lion of Karnataka’ as he dared to march against the British. Additionally, along with a few others, he started a daily newspaper called Samyukta Karnataka and it became one of the leading newspapers in no time. In 1924’s Congress Session, held at Belgaum, which is also the only session with Mahatma Gandhi as the president, Gangadhara Rao Deshpande was elected as the Reception Committee Chairman. To quote the great leader, “Our difficulties are not external, they are of the heart. Not negotiations therefore, but purification of the heart is what is needed.”