Lala Lajpat Rai is one of those freedom fighters who fought and played an important role in the Indian Independence Movement. He is remembered for his participation during the Swadeshi movement and his advocacy of education. 

Affectionately called “Punjab Kesari” took his last breath on November 17, 1928, after he got hurt in a baton charge ordered by the superintendent of police James A. Scott. Rai was leading a non-violent march in protest against the Simon Commission which was organised to report on the political situation in India. The commission had not included a single Indian that erupted into a nationwide protest. 

Lala Lajpat Rai was born in 1865 and was also a part of the Lal-Bal-Pal trio. He pioneered the formation of the Punjab National Bank. From studying in Lahore to being a pillar of nationalism in India, Rai had donned himself into many forms. 



As the country pays tribute to the courageous leader, we bring you some interesting facts about him. 

1. Rai was born in Dhudike near Ludhiana in Punjab in 1865. He received his education from the Government College Lahore and even had a legal practice in the city. 

2. Rai started following Dayanand Saraswati, the founder of the Arya Samaj and later became one of the society’s leaders.

3. At the age of 16, Rai joined the Indian National Congress in 1881 and in 1885 he established the Dayanand Anglo-Vedic School in Lahore.

4. During the Lahore Session of the Congress in 1893, Lajpat Rai first met Bal Gangadhar Tilak and the two along with Bipin Chandra Pal went on to be known as Lal-Bal-Pal, a trio who actively promoted using Swadeshi goods. 
 
5. During the first World War, Rai lived in the United States and founded the Indian Home Rule League of America.
 
 
6. Rai in the year 1928, introduced the legislative assembly resolution suggesting boycotting British Simon Commission on constitutional reform. 
 
 
7. In 1907, Rai was deported to Mandalay (present-day Myanmar) for participating in a demonstration in Punjab, however, was permitted to return back to India in the same year due to lack of evidence against him. 

8. The Punjab Kesari was elected President of the Indian National Congress in 1920, during its Special Session in Kolkata, which saw the launch of Mahatma Gandhi’s Non-cooperation Movement.

9. As an editor, Rai founded Arya Gazaette and wrote several books, biographies of Mazzini, Garibaldi, Shivaji and Shrikrishna. Some of his works include - The Story of My Deportation, United States of America: A Hindu's Impression, England's Debt to India. 



10. Rai University of Veterinary and Animal Sciences in Hisar, Haryana is named after the fearless revolutionary. 

11. Martyr’s Day in Odisha is celebrated on Rai’s death anniversary. 
 


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