Indian independence activist Vinayak Damodar Savarkar’s 138th anniversary is being celebrated on May 28. He was born in a Hindu Marathi family in Nashik, Maharashtra on May 28, 1883. He was nicknamed ‘Veer’ for his courage from an early age and was heavily influenced by his older brother Ganesh Savarkar. In 1909, Ganesh opposed the Morley-Minto reforms of the British government. Savarkar also gathered support for the movement but was later sentenced 50 years in jail for this.
During his jail time, Savarkar wrote books like ‘The Indian War of Independence 1857’ which fuelled anti-British sentiments in many Indians.
The former Hindu Mahasabha president was infamously incarcerated in the cellular jails of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, called Kala Pani, by the Britishers. In 2002, the airport in Andaman and Nicobar’s capital city Port Blair was renamed after Veer Savarkar.
Savarkar was a staunch critic of the Indian National Congress and also opposed the Quit India movement of 1942. He severely criticised the Congress party for accepting the two-nation policy.
On his birth anniversary, let’s revisit some of his most popular quotes.
Veer Savarkar advocated against untouchability throughout his life
“The practice of untouchability is a sin, a blot on humanity, and nothing can justify it."
Savarkar was also believed to be a good administrator
“Calmness in preparation but boldness in execution, this should be the watchword during the moments of crisis."
He was self-proclaimed atheist and believed Hinduism is a way of life
“One country one God, one caste, one mind brothers all of us without difference, without doubt."
Savarkar was a staunch supporter of a Hindu Rashtra
“Every person is a Hindu who regards and owns this Bharat Bhumi, this land from the Indus to the seas, as his Fatherland as well as Holyland, that is, the land of the origin of his religion."