PANDIT SHYAMAJI KRISHNAVARMA A FORGOTTEN NRI HERO OF INDIAN INDEPENDENCE
BY : Mr Hemantkumar Gajanan Padhya
If the true and precise history of Indian Freedom Struggle was written and taught to the people of India after independence, the name of Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma would not have been unfamiliar to the general public of India. It is also an irony of history that very few NONRESIDENT INDIANS living in United Kingdom have much knowledge of such a great political and academic personality who made a history in Britain. The name of Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma should be on the front page of the chapters of Indian Freedom Struggle in 19th century ashe initiated the movement in London in 1905, Fifteen years before Gandhiji entered into the politics of Indian independence. Although Gandhiji is being praised and credited for being pioneer of Indian Freedom Movement for political reason, Pandit Shyamaji was the real and the first Gujarati from Kuchch, who advocated the principle of non-cooperation & nonassociation movement in his newspaper 13 years before Gandhiji. Gandhiji put Pandit Shyamajis philosophy and idea into a practice by calling the same movement as Asahakar Andolan later. Pandit Shymaji was the first person to preach non-violence movement option for the Indian Independence before Gandhiji, but he never ruled out the use of arms and violence if required to free his Motherland from British tyranny and occupation. In reality, Gandhiji was a predecessor of Pandit Shyamaji. If Gandhiji is honoured with the title of Rashtrapita for hiswork, there is no doubt that Pandit Shyamji Krishnavarma deserves the title of Rashtrapitamaha as no other political leader of Indian freedomMovement in 19th century had worked tirelessly and sacrificed as much as him..
Pandit Shyamji Krishnavarma was the first and foremost NRI Freedom Fighter in the history of Indian Freedom Movement. He was a great patriot, philanthropist and political propagandist of Bharat -India. He will be remembered in the history of the freedom movement of Bharat as a great revolutionary journalist, writer and a maker of freedom fighters and the most inspiring genius of freedom movement for Indian youths. Fired with a deep patriotic urge and nationalist emotion, Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma launched the freedom movement in England in 1905, nearly two decades before Gandhiji entered into freedom movement of Bharat. He was not only a great freedom fighter and inspirer but also a great and profound Sanskrit & English scholar. Professor (Sir) Monier Williams held very high respect for Shyamaji. In his testimonial he said, “Assuredly no English or European teacher could possibly be his equal in expounding the grammar of Indian languages according to the principles of native grammarians. I may add that I know no other Pandit who combines a
considerable knowledge of Greek and Latin with great Sanskrit attainments.” A famous indologist and Sanskrit scholar professor Max Muller also spoke very highly of Shyamaji. .Pandit Shyamaji sacrificed his whole life and earnings for the freedom of his motherland from the foreign rule of British Imperialism. He was a brave and committed comrade who made his headquarter right in the heart of British Empire, their capital, London, to fight against Barbaric British Rule in India. He was one of the foremost leaders of New Nationalist Movement during the most critical years of awakening of Indian mass. He carried out rigorous propaganda in Europe for the cause of Freedom Movement of Bharat. Pandit Shyamaji was the first and foremost Indian political leader to demand complete independence from British despotism and to use the term Swaraj (SELF RULE), which was later adopted by Dadabhai Naoroji and his colleagues in Indian National Congress.
Family Background, Birth and Education Shyamji was born in a historic year of 1857 when the first war of Indian Independence was fought against British Imperialism, where thousands of freedom fighters sacrificed their life to liberate their Motherland from foreign rule. Shyamaji was borne 30th October 1857 in Mandavi of Kutchh province, according to the official register in Geneva. His Father, Karasan Bhanushali, known by nickname “ Bhulo Bhanushali” was economically poor. He worked as a labourer for cotton Press Company exporting cotton abroad. His mother, Sundarbai was very brave and pious lady. Unfortunately, she died when Shyamaji was just eleven years old and her mother took over the responsibility to raise him. Shyamji was very intelligent from his childhood. He completed his primary and secondary education in Mandavi and Bhuj in Kutchh Province. He came to Mumbai for further education and joined Wilson High School. He had a great love for Sanskrit language since his childhood. He acquired his preliminary lessons in Sanskrit language from Shri B B Pandya in Mandavi. He acquired further knowledge of Sanskrit language in great depth from Shashtri Vishvanath of Mumbai & mastered the language. Shyamaji got married to Bhanumati, a daughter of a wealthy businessman Seth Shri Chahbildas Lallubhai of Bhatia community and a sister of his school friend Ramdas, in 1875. He came in touch with Swami Dayanand Saraswati, an exponent of Vedas, radical reformer, and staunch nationalist and founder of Arya Samaj. He became his disciple. Pandit Shyamaji was leading personality and founder member of the first Arya samaj Centre in Kakadvadi, Mumbai, opened on 10th April 1975.. Swamiji was very impressed with Shyamji’s knowledge of Sanskrit and religious literatures. He guided and inspired Shyamji to conduct lectures on Vedic Philosophy and Religion. In 1877, Shyamji toured all over Bharat propagating the philosophy of Vedas. This tour secured him a great public recognition all over Bharat and many prominent scholars admired him for his knowledge and speeches. He was the first non-Brahmin, who was conferred the prestigious title of Pandit by the Pandits of Kashi in 1877. Professor Monier Williams,learned Professor of Sanskrit at oxford, attended the lecture of Pandit Shyamaji in Mumbai in 1876. He was so impressed with Shyamaji’sdeep knowledge, mastery and his oratory excellence over Sanskrit
Language and literatures. He saw a great potential in this young man and offered Shyamaji a job as his assistant in first instance.
PANDIT SHYAMAJI, ACHIEVEMENTS AT OXFORDUNIVERSITY
Shyamji arrived in England in 1879 on invitation of professor Monier-Williams of Oxford University. He joined professor William s as his assistant. Shyamji also joined Balliol College on 25th April 1979 forfurther study with the recommendation of professor Williams. He passed his B A in 1883. He was invited to read papers on “the origin of writing in India” by the secretary of Royal Asiatic Society. Pandit Shyamji’s speech was very well received there and he was elected as a non-resident member of the society. In 1881, he was sent by the secretary of state for India to represent the learning of his country at Berlin Congress of Orientalists. There he not only read his own paper on the subject of “ Sanskrit as a living language of India”, but also he read the patriotic Sanskrit Poem sent by Ram Das Sen, a learned ZAMINDAR of Behrampur, and translated it into English for audience. This patriotic poem might have created the spark of patriotism in Shyamji. In 1982, Shyamji was elected as honorary member of “Empire Club”, the exclusive club of British elites and aristocrats. Here in England, He enacted from success to success. He came across many thinkers, philosophers and scholars and they all admired this genius young man from India. Indologist Max Muller and vice chancellor of Oxford University, Dr B Jowett thought very highly of Shyamji. He returned to India in the end of 1883 and came back with his wife Bhanumati to finish his study.
RETURNED TO INDIA TO SERVE HIS MOTHERLAND
In 1885, he returned to India and enrolled himself as advocate of Mumbai High Court on19th January 1985 and started his practice. Then he was appointed as Diwan (chief minister) of Ratlam State by the king of the state. He resigned his high post in May 1988 due to ill health. The king granted him a lump sum of RS 32052 as signal mark of his high regards for his service. Then he stayed in Mumbai for a while. He settled in Ajmer, headquarter of his Guru Swami Dayanand Saraswati, and started his practice at British Court, Ajmer. Here he earned the bigger income than Ratlam. He made industrial investment in three cotton presses and secured a permanent income, which made him independent of any services for remainder of his life. He also served for Maharaja of Udaipur as member of his council from 1893 to 1895. He took position of Diwan of Junagadh State in 1895 and resigned in 1897 due to bitter experience of British agent’s interference. This incidence shook his faith in British Rule and justice. During his stay in India, Shyamji was very much impressed with a nationalist leader, Lokmanya Tilak. He whole-heartedly supported Tilak when he said hands off to British Government during the consent of AGE BILL CONTRAVERSY. Shyamji initiated very friendly relation with Tilak, which inspired Shyamji to the Nationalist Movement in next decade. The timid and futile cooperative policy of Congress Party did not appeal Shyamaji. He believed that the petitioning, praying, protesting, cooperating and collaborating policy of Congress Party was undignified, shameful for Indian Nationalism and self-respects of proud and patriotic Indians. Shyamaji saw that undignified method of “political mendicancy” adopted by Congress Party had crossed the limit of patience of educated youth and made them furious. In
1897, the atrocities inflicted during the plague crisis in Poona on Indians by British Government, stunned and shocked Shyamji. He then felt full justification for the nationalist stand taken by Chafekar brothers and Tilak. On 20th June 1897, Chafekar brothers assassinated the tyrant Commissioner of Pune during Plague out break, Mr Rand and his Lieutenant Ayerst. Shyamaji was well acquainted with Damodar, one of the Chafekar Brothers, whom he employed as his bodyguard on recommendation of Bal Gangadhar Tilak to train him in armaments in disguise, while Shyamaji was Diwan of Udaipur. He has foreseen his future to ending up in jail like Tilak and others if he would carry out his future plan of this movement in India as the political climate of India became highly suppressive and repressive after the assassination of Mr Rand and Ayerst. Shyamaji rejected his lucrative career to immigrate to England in March 1897 just after the arrest of Damodar, with a view to carry out the fight from abroad. He deliberately intended to launch uncompromising propaganda against autocratic, exploitative and oppressive regime of British Rule and to create support in England and Europe for THE INDEPENDENCE OF INDIA. Shyamji left his Motherland with the great determination to work restlessly for the liberation of India from foreign rule. He had only one business in mind to establish a business of training and inspiring the young sons and daughters of India to strive for the liberty of their Motherland. He decided to dedicate all his money, time, scholarship,literary power and above all his life to serve his Motherland selflessly.
RETURNED TO ENGLAND TO FIGHT FOR THEFREEDOM OF HIS MOTHERLAND
After his arrival in London, Shyamaji lived at obscure addresses in England for a while and later he stayed in residential chamber of Inner Temple at 13, Kings Bench Walk, Temple Inn. He utilised his leisure time to study Herbert Spencer’s literatures and the thoughts of other prominent writers advocating freedom. He stayed here until 1900 and acquired deep knowledge in the philosophy of Freedom utilising the library of Inner Temple as being a member of this professional organisation. In 1900, he bought a luxurious house at 9, Queens wood Avenue, Highgate (now known as 60, Muswell Hill Road, Highgate London N10 3IRfrom 3rd March 1921) in 1900. This place became a base for all political leaders of India. Gandhiji, Lenin, Tilak, Lala Lajpatrai, Gokhle etc visited this house to discuss the plan for Indian Independence Movement. Shyamji disagreed and refused to be associated in any measure with Indian Congress activities, which was largely run by Mr Hume, Mr Waddenburn and company. Shyamji cultivated personal contacts with many person of advanced views such as rationalists, free thinkers, national & social democrats British Socialists, Irish republicans and above all those who were fighting for liberty in the any corner in the world. In 1898, when a free press defence committee was formed inorder to resist police attack upon liberty of all opinions Shyamji subscribed generously to its funds. In the same year Pandit Shyamaji met Sardarsinh Rana, his future disciple, associate and friend, who came to London to study law at inner Temple. In 1899, Shyamji strongly criticised Gandhiji, a lawyer from Natal, for supporting British Government in Boer war, when Boers were fighting for their very existence of their small nation. Shyamaji started giving fiery speeches in the free atmosphere of Hyde Park in London, calling for the supports of
progressive and sympathetic Britons in the right cause of India’s emancipation. The fire brand speech of Shyamaji set a fire of patriotic feeling in the heart of by passing Indian lady in audience, who would be destined to become a “ Mother of Indian Revolution” in future under the discipleship of Pandit Shamaji Krishnavarma. Shyamji, a follower and disciple of Spencer’s philosophy, announced £1000 donation to establish the lectureship at university of Oxford in memory of Herbert Spencer, a apostle ofthe freedom of the individuals and principle of a British philosophers, at his funeral service held in Golders Green, on14/12/1903, as a great tribute and respect to him and his work. He also planned the programme of carrying out Spencerian propaganda for the benefit of his countrymen. On Herbert Spencer’s 1st death anniversary, 8th Dec 1904, Shyamji announced that Herbert Spencer Indian fellowships of RS 2000 each were awarded to enable Indian graduates to finish education in England. He also announced additional fellowship in memory of the late swami Dayanand Saraswati the founder of Arya Samaj along with further four fellowships in the future.
LAUNCH OF THE FIRST REVOLUTIONARY FREEDOM MOVEMENT OF INDIA IN ENGLAND AND EUROPE
In 1905, Shyamji embarked on his great life work for the freedom of his motherland. Shyamji’s new career began as a full -fledged political propagandist and organiser for the alignment of complete independence of India. Shyamji finally made his debut in Indian politics by publishing first issue of his English monthly “The Indian Sociologist” – an organ of freedom and of political, social and religious reform in January 1905from his address 9 Queens Wood Avenue, Highgate, now known as 60Muswell Hill Road, Highgate. This strong, powerful, realistic, ideological monthly served a great purpose in uplifting mass against British rule and created many more intellectual revolutionaries in the India and abroad to fight for the freedom of India.On the 18th February 1905, Shyamji inaugurated a new organisation called “The Indian Home Rule Society”. The first meeting held at Shyamji’s residence at Highgate and the meeting unanimously decided to found “The Indian Home Rule Society” with the object of:1) Securing Home Rule for India2) Carrying on Propaganda in England by all practical means with a view to attain the same.3) Spreading among the people of India a knowledge of freedom and national unity. As the racial prejudice barred the way to many boarding houses and hostels to Indian students, he foresaw the necessity of starting a hostel for Indian students. He bought a freehold property at 65, Cromwell Avenue, Highgate and he made an announcement of forthcoming opening of famous India House, a hostel of Indian students with living accommodation for 25 students. India House formally inaugurated on 1stJuly by Mr. H. M. Hyndman, a leader of social, democratic federation, in presence of many dignitaries, such as Dadabhai Navarojji, LalaLajpatrai, Madam Cama, Mr. Swinney (from positivist society), Mr.Quelch (the editor of Justice) and Madam Despard (Irish Republican and Suffragette). Declaring “India House” open, Mr H M Hyndman gave a most eloquent and sympathetic speech. He remarked, “As things stands, loyalty to Great Britain means treachery to India. The institution of this India house means a great step in that direction of Indian growth and Indian emancipation, and some of those who are here this afternoon may live to witness the fruits of its triumphant success.” How Prophetic words were of a great statesman! The main purpose of Shyamji Krishnavarma to open this hostel was to create great
patriotic revolutionaries by implementing his ideology for the freedom of India. He succeeded in his vision and he produced the greatest revolutionaries such as Madam Bhikhaiji Cama, Sardarsinh Rana, Krantivir Vinayak Savarkar, Virendra Chattopadhyay, and Hardayalji etc. Shyamji attended the United Congress of democrats held at HolbornTown Hall on 29th July 1905, as a chief delegate of the India Home RuleSociety. Shyamji scored a tremendous personal success when he rose to move the resolution on India; he received an enthusiastic ovation from the entire conference. The newspapers Reynolds and Daily Chronicle gave remarkable coverage of his speech. Shyamji’s activities in England remained highly volcanic and inflammatory to British Government. The power of his pen shook the British Empire. He was later disbarred from inner temple and removed from the book of the society on 30th April 1909 for writing anti-British articles in Indian Sociologist. Most of the British Press were anti Shyamji and carried out outrageous allegations against him and his newspaper. He defended them boldly. The Times referred to him as the “Notorious Krishnavarma”. Many newspapers criticised liberal British people who supported Shyamji and his view. The British government became highly suspicious of him. As Shyamji realised his movements were closely watched by British Secret Services he finally decided to shift his headquarters to Paris leaving India House in charge of his disciple Vir Savarkar. He gave snap to Brirish Police and intelligence department and left Britain secretly before the British Government tried to arrest him.
PANDIT SHYAMAJI’S FREEDOM MOVEMENT IN PARIS AND GENEVA AND MARTYRDOM
He arrived in Paris in early 1907 and continued his work vigorously. The British media still remained highly critical of him and tried to use their influence in French media circle. The British government tried to extradite him from France with no success as Shyamaji established a great friendship with many top French politicians who supported him and his cause. Shyamaji soon established his headquarter in Paris and started his propaganda mission to liberate his motherland. He sent Madame Cama and Sardarsinh Rana to attend the Socialist International Conferece where Madam Cama created a great history by delivering extraordinary speech and by unfurling the first flag of Indian Independence on international platform. As Shyamaji was the sworn critic of British Rule in India and arch enemy of British Government, his name was dragged into the most sensational trial of Mr. Merlin, an Englishmen, at Bows Court for writing an article in “liberators” published by Shyamji’s friend, Mr. James. Shyamji restlessly worked in Paris to procure support for Indian Independence from European countries with great success. He agitated for the release of Savarker and acquired great support all over Europe and Russia. Guy Aldred wrote an article in the Daily Herald under the heading of “Savarkar the Hindu Patriot whose sentences expire on 24thDecember 1960”. This created a great support in England too. As the presence of Indian nationalist in Paris would be seriously jeopardised by the outbreak of an European war, and the visit of King George to Paris, to set a final seal of Entente Cordiale. In 1914, Shyamji foresaw the fate and shifted his headquarter to Geneva. He continued his struggle for Indian independence, morally and financially, with same enthusiasm but with some restriction as the pledge of political in-action he had given
to Swiss Government during the entire period of second World War. He kept in touch with his old friends but he could not support them fully, as he was restricted from all political activities. He isolated from his friends, e.g.Ranaji, Madam Cama, and his created revolutionaries, like Savarker, Hardayal, etc. and this isolation threw him into the company of Dr. Briess who was president of Pro India Committee in Geneva. Shyamji was later shocked and heartbroken when he found out that Dr. Briess was a paid secret agent of the British government, as well as the treachery of his old friend. This event left a deep scar in his heart but his support to the cause of Indian Independence remained at his heart throughout. Pandit Shyamaji blended very well in the aristocratic political and social circle of Geneva. He became a member of the Circle DE LA Press and was listed on United Nation’s journalists’ list. He also traded at Stock Exchange and created close contacts in business community of Geneva. He was always prepared to help for the cause of freedom and injustice. He offered a sum of 10 000 francs to the league of nations for the purpose of endowing a lectureship to be called President Wilson (USA)Lectureship for the discourse on the best means of acquiring and safeguarding national independence consistently with freedom, justice, andthe right of asylum accorded to political refugees. It is said that the league rejected his offer due to political pressure from British Government. When he made a similar offer to Swiss government, it was also turned down. He declared another lectureship to the president of Press Association of Geneva at the banquet given by Press Associationof Geneva where 250 journalists and publicists which included the president of Swiss Federation and the league of nations. Shyamji’s offer was applauded on the spot but it met with the same fate as before. Shyamji was very much disappointed with such decision and he published all his abortive correspondence related to these matters in his new issue of the Sociologist on Dec. 1920, after a lapse of almost 6 years. His last two issues of Indian Sociologist were published in August and September 1922, could be taken as his last political will and testament of his work. After several health problems, a great Indian patriot, Shyamji Krishnavarma, breathed his last in hospital at 11:30pm on 30th March1930 leaving his wife Shrimati Bhanumati Krishnavarma with no heir. Shyamaji’s last rites were performed by a great nationalist, educationalist and a founder of Kashi Vidyapeeth, Rashtraratna Shiv Prasad Gupta who coincidently was happened to be in Geneva and went specially to meet Pandit Shyamaji but unfortunately Shiva Prasad’s dream of meeting and talking to a great personality was not fulfilled. British government in India and Britain suppressed the death news of Pandit Shyamaji. Although the best tribute paid to him by great evolutionaries, Sadar Bhagat Singh and his co-revolutionary brothers in Lahore Jail, where they were undergoing a long-term drawn out trial and Maratha, a daily newspaper started by Shri Tilak in Marathi language paid very touching tribute to a great revolutionary. On the very day Gandhiji was marching towards the seaside of Dandi with the bandwagon of world media under the glittering of world publicity to inaugurate the non-cooperation movement which was actually professed by Pandit Shyamaji many years ago. Due to difference in political views with Shyamaji, Gandhiji did not even pay any respect to a great Indian Freedom fighter during his mass demonstration on 6th April 1930 or paid any tribute in his publications. Pandit
Shyamaji’s wife Bhanumati carried out the good work of Shyamji even after his death. She donated 10,000 Swiss Francs in memory of Shyamji to the Geneva University to be used every year for printing and approved thesis on subject of sociological interest. She also donated 10000 Swiss Francs to the hospital in Geneva for the treatment of poor and needy. She presented the whole of the Sanskrit and Oriental Library ofPandit Shyamji to the institute De Civilisation Indienne in the Surbonne. She donated 90,000 francs to established a trust in Surbonne University for awarding scholarship to a suitable number of selected Indian students for prosecuting higher studies in the university. Even today the memory of Shyamji and his wife is preserved in Sorbonne University int he form a memorial plaque in ‘’THE HALL OF HONOURS.’’
Shyamaji had the undisputed faith of the Indian Nationalists who aspires to nothing less than the sovereign independence (Sampurna Swaraj) of Bharat, the Aryavart of his guru Swami Dayanad’s dream, and he cherished it up to the very end of his life. While the moderates of the Congress Party and renegades worshipped at the unholy church of British Imperialism, Shyamji KrishnaVarma declared undying and uncompromising war against the British occupation of his Motherland. He spent the rest of his life in exile to achieve his goal for independence of India. The seed he sowed for the independence struggle, in early 19th century, brought a fruitful result in 1948, when finally India’s struggle for Independence was over and it became Independent from British Rule. He did not survive to see the glorious result of all his hard work that bore freedom to Mother India, but his vision for freeing his country from the all-embracing strong hold of foreign power and to establish India on the high pedestal of sovereign republic among the free nation of the world, became fulfilled. Shyamji will always be remembered and be seen as an intellectual role model to not only the people of India, but to the people of the world as a great freedom fighter revolutionist with a pen as the weapon of mass destruction which shook the mighty British Empire. FULLFILMENT OF PANDIT SHYAMAJI’S LAST WISH Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma did not live to witness the independence of Bharat, but his tremendous efforts, firm conviction and strong confidence of India gaining its freedom from British rule in future was strong and unshakable as he made the prepaid arrangements with the local government of Geneva, Ville de Geneve, and St Georges cemetery to preserve his & his wife’s ashes (Asthis) at the cemetery for one hundred years and to send their urns to India whenever India becomes independent during that period.It is a sad and shameful irony in the history of Indian Independence that the Congress Party who took over the charge from British and ruled the government of independent Bharat for almost fifty years did not bother to peruse the matter of bring the urns (Ashis) of Pandit Shyamaji & his wife for their political gains and grudges as Pandit Shyamaji was not a follower of Congress and Gandhidian ideology and policy. The other main reason for the neglect might be that they did not want to bring out the great work and sacrifice rendered by other freedom fighters like Shyamaji and Subhash Chandra Bose, whom they deliberately brushed under the carpet, to protect their beloved heroes Gandhiji’s and Jawaharlal’s images. They portrayed them as being the only two freedom fighter heroes who made the freedom of India possible. More over other political parties of free India also did not bother much on the subject
after freedom from British and never pressurised the ruling parties to take positive action on this issue. Surprisingly it is a sad story that the comrades, co-activists, corevolutionist, benificiaries, friends and executor of Mr and Mrs Krishnavarma’s will as well as the relatives of Bhanumatiji and some friends who received thousands of franks in inheritance after shayamaji and Bhanumatiji’s death, had never shown any interest in fulfilling the last desire of Pandit Shyamaji and his wife Bhanumati. The truth always prevails. The deliberate and cunning attempt of Congress Party over fifty years could not suppress the will of fully committed and devoted few patriotic individuals and organisations to keep the lamp of Pandit Shyamaji’s memory burning. There were several attempts were made over last few decades by few individuals and Pandit Syamaji Krishna Foundation, Mandavi, Bharat to secure the transfer of unrns with no conclusive success. The outstanding task was finally taken over by myself, Hemant Padhya , a founder and President of Hindu Swatantryavir Smruti Sansthanam, United Kingdom in 1997. I worked very hard to pursue the matter with Local Government ofGeneva, Ville de Geneve for many years to fulfil the last wish of PanditShyamaji to bring the Urns (Asthis) to Liberated Bharat from Geneva.Finally my continueous efforts succeeded and the matter finalised afterseveral visits to Geveva. I visited India and approached Shri Mangal Bhanushali, Corporator of Mumbai and Trustee of Krishnavarma foundation, Mandavi, Shri Kirit Somaiya, then Member of parliament, Mulund, Mumbai,. We held a meeting at Shri Kirit Somaiya’s office in Mulund and the plan was discussed with Shri Vinod Khanna, M P of BJP, famous actor of Bollywood and then Minister of External Affairs of Indian Government. Finally Shri Vinod Khannaji finalised the diplomatic procedures as required by the Swiss law and Government , thus the joint efforts of patriots made it possible to receive a long due and momentous occasion in the history of Indian Freedom Movement. On later stage, Shri Narendra Modi, Chief Minister of Gujarat State, got involved in the process as a head of the state and at last, the urns of Pandit Shyamaji and his wife Bhanumatiji were officially handed over to The Chief Minister Of Gujarat state, Mr Narendra Modiji on 22nd August 2003, by Villed de Geneve and Swiss Government in presence of Mr Hemant Padhya, Mr Kirit Somaiya and Mr Mangal Bhanushali. After seventy three years of Pandit Shyamaji’s death and fifty five years after Indian independence, the last wish of Pandit Shyamaji, A Great Indian Freedom Fighter Revolutionary, is fulfilled when Shri Narendra Modi landed with the Urns at Chatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Air Port, Sahar, Mumbai on 23rd August 2003, exactly eight days and fifty five years after Indian Independence.
Although Mr Hemant Padhya had initially discussed with the authority Ville de Geneve to bring Asthis to United kingdom first at Pandit Shyamaji’s previous residence home in London to enable Indian community to pay their respects and homage to Mr and Mrs Krishnavarma before taking them to Bharat, but, for some political and bureaucratic reason, that plan was dropped secretly by the Governments of India. This was an unfortunate unfair and unnecessary decision taken by Indian Authority and all arrangements were made accordingly without prior notification to all parties involved. According to the saying’’ A man proposes and God disposes’’. It might be destined and be desired by the departed soul that their asthis should touch the land of their Karma and Yuddha Bhumi before going to their last and final destination. So the asthis did come to Britain as transit cargo at Heathrow Airport at late night on 22nd August 2003 from Geneva and rested on the British soil for several hours due to some last minutes changes in flight arrangements by officials. A magnificent reception was held at Mumbai Airport and thousands of people from all over India came out to see and pay last homage to their National Hero at Chatrapati Shivaji Airport. After several grand receptions given by fellow Mumbaikars in Mumbai Area on 23rd August as Bhanumati and pandit Shyamaji were also the residents of Mumbai,Maharaashtra. The Asthis of Great Indian patriot Shyamaji and his wife were procceeded in the form of “VIRANJALI YATRA” by road from Mumbai to Mandavi, Pandit Shyamaji’s birth place in Kuchchha, Gujarat State. The Asthis were passed through the Thana district of Maharashtrastate and first entered into Gujarat in Umergaon taluka, the native of Mr Hemant Padhya whose last efforts made the day possible with help of others. From Umergaon, the Asthis were taken all around Gujarat State to provide an opportunity to the people to pay their last respects to the greatest Freedom Fighter Revolutionary, Pandit Shyamaji and his wife Bhanumati. Finally the Urns containing Asthis reached to it last and final destination Mandavi on 4th September2003, Where millions of people gathered to pay their respect to their Great Son of The Soil, Kachchhi Baydo. These Asthis are securely preserved in “Smruti Mandir” at the house where Pandit Shyamaji was born. Many people visited SmrutiMandir and paid respects to Pandit Shyamaji and Bhanumatiji. Among many other dignatories visited, the Bollywood Mega Star Shri Amitabh Bachchan had paid his respects on 30th May 2010 and had signed the register.
REVIVING THE MEMORY OF PANDIT SHYAMAJI
After fulfilling the task of sending the Urns to Bharat, Mr Hemant Padhya of H.S.S.S. has fulfilled his aim to erect a memorial plaque at the house where Pandit Shyamaji Lived from 1900 to 1907. The memorial plaque of Pandit Shyamaji was unveiled on 15th August 2005 by Mr Ramiji Ranger, Five times Queens’ Best business Awardee British business Tycoon and a son of a great patriot martyr Nanaksinghji. The tremendous efforts in persuading the local authority. In 2006, Hindu Swatantryavir Smruti Sansthanam, has established Silver Medals in the memory of Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma at OCHS at Oxford University where Pandit Shyamaji worked and studied and also at College de France, Paris where Pandit shyamaji’s collection of rare books are preserved and Krishnavarma Foundation was established by Bhanumatiji. Sincere and dedicated efforts of Mr Hemant Padhya made it possible to pursuade the Indian Institute library of University of Oxford to honour Pandit Shyamaji by unveiling his portrait in the Hall of honour at the library where Sir Monier MonierWilliams’s portrait is placed. Thus Mr Padhya’s efforts made it possible to provide the deserved prestigious honour to Pandit Shyamaji at Indian Institute Library at The University of Oxford as Pandit ShyamajI rendered a great service in formation of Indian Institute as an assistant to Sir Monier-Williams.
The chief minister of Gujarat state, Shri Narendra Modiji had allocated 152 acres of land to build a remarkable memorial of Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma Kranti Tirth in 2003 and the most ambitious and work of art project was promised by him to be completed by 2010. The announcement of this project was to provide the respect and honour not only to Pandit Shyamaji but also to other Forgotten Freedom fighter Revolutionaries whose name and fames are not much publicised in the history of Indian Freedom Movement. The foundation stone of Kranti Tirth project was laid on 4th of October 2009 and a manificent Kranti Tirth was inaugurated by the chief Minister of Gujarat,Shri Narendra Modi on 13th December 2010. The Urns containing the Ashes [ASTHIS] of Pandit Shyamaji and his wife Bhanumatiji are Transfered from Shyamaji’s birth Place Smruti Mandir to Kranti Tirth gallery and beautiful life size statues of Pandit Shyamaji and Bhanumatiji are also erected and unveiled. At last in the history of
Indian Freedom, The Forgotten Hero Of Indian Independence and first freedom fighter Revolutionary of Maharaashtra and Gujarat was given long waited honour and respects to Pandit Shyamaji deserved. Since the Kranti Tirth is opened to the public in 2010, thousands of people and many dignitaries have visited and paid their tributes to the great Indian Freedom Fighter Revolutionary who started Freedom movement in London fifteen years before Gandhiji entered into the arena of Indian freedom movement. Every Indian must take a pride in their national heroes who sacrificed their life for the freedom of our motherland irrespective of their paths, methods, ideology and location. Every Indian irrespective of their political affiliation or ideology must pay their respects equally to those who sacrificed their life on the altar of their motherland so no other patriot heroes would ever be ignored for his/her sacrifice alike Pandit Shyamaji Krishnavarma. . .
VANDE MATARAM ! PANDIT SHYAMAJI KRISHNAVARMA AMAR RAHO !