The villages of Bhagat Singh and Gangaram in Pakistan
Bhagat Singh is seen as a revolutionary in the subcontinent’s war of independence. He was born in the present day city of Jaranwala in Pakistan and was hanged in Lahore. Sargangaram’s ancestral home in Nagpur is still in good condition and locals want to turn it into a library.
The benefits of Gangaram Farming Society continue to this day and its income is used for welfare work. Many buildings designed by Sir Ganga Ram still exist in Lahore today, while hospitals named after him exist in Delhi and Lahore.
Given the current relationship between Pakistan and India, it is difficult to imagine today that the two countries were once the same.
But on reaching the village of Bhagat Singh and Sir Gangaram in Pakistan, one realizes that the war of independence was a shared heritage of both Pakistan and India.
Bhagat Singh and Sarganga Ram were born in Jaranwala Tehsil, Faisalabad (then Lyallpur), Punjab Province, Pakistan.
Born in April 1851 in the village of Gangapur in Jaranwala, Sir Gangaram is somehow called the founder of Lahore.
Even today, Lahore has many buildings designed by him, such as the National College of Arts, the Lahore Museum and the General Post Office. He also founded the famous Sir Gangaram Hospital in Lahore.
Gangapur, the home village of Sir Gangaram, is also named after him.
The family of Shakeel Ahmed Shakir, a landowner of the village, has been living in this village since 1880. He says that his grandfather, grandfather worked with Sir Gangaram.
He said: “After partition, the names of roads and other places named after Hindus and Sikhs in Pakistan were changed but the people here did not allow the name of the village to be changed. Sir Gangaram’s service was for Hindus, Sikhs and Muslims alike.
Sir Gangaram had founded the Cooperative Farming Society in Gangapur and donated 56 acres of fertile land for it. Today, development work for the welfare of the people is being carried out in Gangapur with its income.
The house where Gangaram used to live is still in good condition and the villagers think that it should be converted into a library so that future generations can know about Sir Gangaram.
Rao Dildar, a social worker in the village, says, “The villagers have a lot of respect for Sir Gangaram because of him, there is prosperity in the village.”
About 20 km from Gangapur on Faisalabad Jaranwala Road is the village of Banga, the village of freedom hero Bhagat Singh. This village is now known as Bhagatpur.
Bhagat Singh’s ancestral home is owned by the village’s numbered Jamaat Ali Work. After partition, his grandfather Sultan Malik got the house.
Jamaat-e-Ali says: “Bhagat Singh’s brother Kalbir Singh first came here in 1985 after partition. They told us that the house belonged to Bhagat Singh’s family.
He said that the mango tree planted by Bhagat Singh is still in the village.
According to Jamaat-e-Ali: Bhagat Singh is the son of this land. The villagers consider him a hero because he raised his voice against the British.
He says: “We believe that unless Bhagat Singh’s name appears in the history of independence, history will not be complete.”
‘Documents related to Shastri’s death to be made public’
Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri was in Tashkent for a ceasefire agreement with Pakistan after the war of 1956 and died there shortly after the agreement.
Anil Shastri, the son of former Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri and a Congress leader, has demanded that secret documents relating to his father’s death be revealed.
Talking to BBC, Anil Shastri said that the documents related to the death of the former Prime Minister should be declassified so that the public can know the circumstances under which he died.
He said that at the time of Lal Bahadur Shastri’s death, some people had expressed doubts about him and his mother was also involved in it.
According to Anil Shastri, there were many reasons for this, such as after the death of Lal Bahadur Shastri, his whole face turned blue, white spots were found on his face.
He said he had lost the red diary he had always had. Not even the thermos that Shastri always kept with him was found. Besides, Shastri’s body was not autopsied.
According to Neel Shastri, after the death of Lal Bahadur Shastri, his entire face turned blue and white spots were found on his face.
Anil Shastri says that many people in the country had questioned Shastri’s death and the media was reporting that his death took place under suspicious circumstances.
Refusal to provide information
According to Anil Shastri, about five years ago, someone had asked the government in an application under RTI why the documents related to Shastri’s death could not be made public.
The government responded by saying that doing so could adversely affect friendly relations with a country and that the documents could not be declassified.
Anil Shastri says this has strengthened people’s suspicions and made it clear that the government wants to hide something.
He said that while the West Bengal government could release documents related to Nitaji Subhash Chandra Bose, the central government should also inform the public about Shastri’s death.
But he also made it clear that he would not meet the prime minister himself and make any demands in this regard.
Anil Shastri said that his brother Sunil Shastri is in the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party and he can do that.
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