Nearly 76 years of Independence and India has always recognized its heroes in the struggle for freedom. However, while male freedom fighters have always been praised, the women have not been praised enough.
However, apart from a select few names such as Rani Laxmi Bai, Kamala Nehru, and Begum Hazrat Mahal, some of the women heroes are already lost to history. These are some of the most prominent yet forgotten female freedom fighters in India:
Bhikaiji Rustom Cama is a crucial figure of the Indian Nationalist Movement and a well-known independence activist. She stressed the equality of men & women. She donated all of her assets to a little girl’s orphanage. In 1907, she went to Germany as an Indian envoy to raise the Indian National flag.
Matangini Hazra was also referred to as Gandhi Buri. She was a member of the Quit India and Non-Cooperation Movements. Despite having been shot three times, she led a parade with the Indian flag. She continued yelling “Vande Mataram!” In 1977, Hazra’s monument was erected in Kolkata, to pay tribute to this selfless freedom fighter.
Kanaklata Barua is often called as Birbala. She was an Indian freedom activist in Assam. She was a key figure in the 1942 Quit India Movement in Barangabari when she led the women activists’ line while holding the National Flag. She wanted to raise the flag at a Police Station but was disallowed by the Britishers. Despite her best efforts to persuade them that her goals were honorable, British police shot her along with many other protestors, and at the age of 18, she gave her life for the nation.
Aruna Asaf Ali
She is often regarded as the “Grand Old Lady” of the Indian Freedom Struggle. She was an independence activist best remembered for raising the Indian National Congress flag amid the Quit India Movement at the Gowalia Tank Maidan in Bombay. She subsequently actively participated in the Salt Satyagraha campaign and other public demonstrations and was jailed.
Rani of Manipur, a hill daughter, is well-known for her opposition to British rule. She began at an early age supporting the struggle for the restoration of the Naga Tribe which resulted in her detention by the British when she was 17 years. She was jailed for fourteen years. After completing her sentence, she led a revolt against the British and struggled for independence with an unbreakable spirit.
Moolmati is somewhat a faded patriot who stood up to British colonialism but never really got the recognition. She was dubbed the “sacrificial mother.” She remained unfazed and prideful when the British authorities executed her son Ramprasad Bismil. She spoke at social assemblies and organized marches. She pledged her and her other son’s allegiance to the liberation movement.
These women freedom fighters had the tenacity and drive in the face of hardship, their bravery to suffer death, and their passionate affection and love for their homeland inspire us to contribute to a better nation.
Also Read: Greatest Freedom Fighters of India