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Kakori Train Robbery Anniversary: All You Need to Know About the Incident

File photo of Chandra Shekhar Azad.

File photo of Chandra Shekhar Azad.

The Hindustan Republican Association (HRA) was a revolutionary party formed in October 1924 by a youth group of the Indian National Congress disgruntled over Mahatma Gandhi’s sudden call to stop the non-cooperation movement.

The Kakori Conspiracy, also known as Kakori Conspiracy Case or Kakori Train Robbery, was carried out by the Hindustan Republic Association in the Kakori town of the United Provinces (now Uttar Pradesh) on 9 August 1925 during the Indian Independence Movement against the British.

The Hindustan Republican Association (HRA) was a revolutionary party formed in October 1924 by a youth group of the Indian National Congress disgruntled over Mahatma Gandhi’s sudden call to stop the non-cooperation movement.

The Kakori Train Robbery was among the many attempts made by the HRA to obtain funds for its armed struggle against the British.

On 9 August 1925, members of the revolutionary party led by Ramprasad Bismil stopped a Lucknow –bound train carrying money collected from railway stations enroute.

After pulling the chain and overpowering the guard, 10 HRA members—Ram Prasad Bismil, Ashfaqulla Khan, Rajendra Lahiri, Chandrashekhar Azad, Sachindra Bakshi, Keshab Chakravarty, Manmathnath Gupta, Murari Lal, Mukundi Lal and Banwari Lal— broke open the government chest and fled with the cash found inside it. One passenger was also killed unintentionally during the robbery.

However, within a month of the attack, more than two dozen HRA members had been arrested. More arrests followed, and some 40 people were rounded up for conceiving and executing the conspiracy.

Eventually, some 30 individuals were put on trial before the special magistrate at Lucknow.

During the trial, fifteen people were released due to lack of evidence while another five escaped. Two of them — Ashfaqullah Khan and Sachindra Bakshi—were captured after the trial.

The final judgments were pronounced on April 6, 1927.

While Ram Prasad Bismil, Thakur Roshan Singh, Rajendra Nath Lahiri and Ashfaqullah Khan were given death sentences, Shachindra Nath Sanyal and Sachindra Bakshi were deported to Kala Pani (Port Blair cellular jail)

Manmath Nath Gupta was given 14 years' imprisonment while Yogesh Chandra Chatterjee, Mukundi Lal, Govid Charan Kar, Raj Kumar Singh and Ram Krishna Khatri were sentenced to jail for 10 years.

Bhupen Nath Sanyal and Prem Krishna Sharma were given five years’ imprisonment while Keshab Chakravarthy was sentenced to four years in prison.

Azad remained unapprehended and was killed in an encounter with police in February 1931, living up to his pledge of never allowing the authorities to capture him alive

The sentences triggered outcry among the Indian people. Despite several attempts to save Ram Prasad Bismil, Thakur Roshan Singh, Rajendra Nath Lahiri and Ashfaqullah Khan, the four HRA members were executed in December 1927.