7th October 1930 is historically significant in India’s struggle of Independence. The brave heart visionaries boldly faced imperial rule’s draconian, unfair pronouncement of judgment. The trial though was a travesty of justice.
On this date leaders of Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA) received their judgment. Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, Rajguru were sentenced to death, B.KDutt, , Shiv Verma, Kishori Lal, Bijoy Kumar Sinha, Gaya Prasad, Jaidev Kapoor, Mahavir Singh were sentenced to transportation for life. Ajoy Ghosh, J.N.Sanyal were acquitted.
The execution however came in effect on 23 March, 1931. Right since 8 April 1929 & throughout the trial & hunger strikes, Bhagat Singh & his comrades had been the focus of sympathy & admiration of large sections of Indians throughout the country. The possible delay in executing Bhagat Singh & his comrades was due to intensified efforts of all countrymen to commute his death sentence by holding massive rallies & dharna.
As a result, ‘Bhagat Singh Appeal Committees’ were formed all over Punjab. The objective of these committees was to obtain signatures of as many people as possible, on a memorandum to be submitted to the Viceroy praying for commutation of death sentence to one of transportation for life. Bhagat Singh had no illusions about the outcome of the trial, did not favor challenging its verdict of 7 October 1930.
BHAGAT SINGH SYMBOLIZES FEARLESSNESS– In December 1930 Shiv Verma & Jai Dev Kapoor had some last words with Bhagat Singh. Quoting Shiv Verma-“After bidding the last adieu, when we began to return, Jai Dev Kapoor asked Bhagat Singh, ‘Sardar, you are going to die, I would like to know if you are sorry for it?’ “On hearing the question the Sardar laughed out first then turned thoughtful and said, ‘When I set foot on the path of revolution I thought if I could spread the slogan of , “Inquilab Zindabad” to every nook and corner of India by sacrificing my life I would think I got the value of my life. Today when I am behind the iron bars of this cell I can hear the roaring sounds of that slogan rising from the throats of crores of my countrymen. I believe that this slogan will be hitting the imperialists hard as a driving force of the freedom struggle till the end’. Then stopping a while he said with his innate smile, ‘what more price could there be of so short of life?’
A CONVINCING WIN– Psyche with which Bhagat Singh went towards on death sentence is something uncommon among those who led their life with a vision towards freedom. In a letter to Batukeshwar Dutt in 1930 he wrote, “I will climb the gallows gladly and show to the world as to how bravely the revolutionaries can sacrifice themselves for the cause.
I will condemn to death, but you are sentenced to transportation for life. You will live and, while living, you will have to show to the world that the revolutionaries not only die for their ideals but can face every calamity. Death should not be a means to escape the worldly difficulties. Those revolutionaries who have by chance escaped the gallows for the ideal but also bear the worst type o tortures in the dark dingy prison cells”. http://www.shahidbhagatsingh.org/index.asp?link=letter_bkdutt At one point Sukhdev had a confusion that he might get life imprisonment instead of death sentence. Then he wrote to Bhagat Singh that in case he (Sukhdev) is convicted for life he will commit suicide. He stood for release or death; no middle course. Bhagat Singh’s reaction to Sukhdev’s letter was very sharp. Serve, suffer and live to struggle for the cause – that was his stand. “Escaping from hardships is cowardice”, he said. http://www.shahidbhagatsingh.org/index.asp?link=regarding_suicide Above letters clearly depict mindset of revolutionary on getting death sentence. He, in reality was far from fear of any kind. His aim to fight colonial rule was to confront institutional arms of British colonial rule such as Central assembly which was used to sustain a fake hope of achieving freedom, the Jail system which was most dehumanized and was used to demoralize and the Justice system which was used to perpetuate Imperial designs. All this were done with an aim to attain supreme goal of sacrifice without any bit affinity for life. He was convinced that masses could be awakened by individual act of sacrifice. In practical sense he attained victory over unscrupulous methods of Britishers. Whole country was clamoring to save Bhagat Singh, but he himself wanted to be sacrificed on the altar of freedom. At age of 23 years, 5 month, 25 days people cling to their life but this young man filled up with vigor wanted to ring down the curtain of life to have a rendezvous with death for good of his beloved countrymen and ideals of humanity!