Modern Indian History-Events and Personalities

Who was Khudiram Bose?


From UPSC perspective, the following things are important :

Prelims level: Khudiram Bose

Mains level: Various revolutionary activities

Union Home Minister has visited the native village of Bengali revolutionary Khudiram Bose in Midnapore, West Bengal.

One of the youngest leaders of the Independence movement, Khudiram Bose is highly regarded in Bengal for his fearless spirit. He was just 19 when he was hanged!

Who was Khudiram Bose?

  • Bose was born in 1889 at a small village in Midnapore district.
  • From his adolescent years, he was drawn towards revolutionary activities, being inspired by a series of public lectures given by Sri Aurobindo and Sister Nivedita, when the duo visited Midnapore in the early 1900s.
  • In 1905, when Bengal was partitioned, he actively participated in protests against the British.
  • At the age of 15, Bose joined the Anushilan Samiti, an early 20th-century organisation that propounded revolutionary activities in Bengal.
  • Within a year, he had learnt how to make bombs and would plant them in front of police stations.

Revolutionary activities

  • The deciding moment of Bose’s life came in 1908 when he along with another revolutionary, Prafulla Chaki was assigned the task of assassinating the district magistrate of Muzaffarpur, Kingsford.
  • Before being transferred to Muzaffarpur, Kingsford was a magistrate in Bengal.
  • His tortuous clamping down on revolutionaries had earned him the ire of this young group of nationalists who decided to hurl a bomb on him.

Kingsford’s assassination attempt

  • There were multiple attempts to assassinate Kingsford.
  • Initially, the plan was to throw the bomb in the court. However, after much deliberation, it was decided to avoid the court since a lot of civilians might get injured.
  • Thereafter, on April 30, 1908, Bose threw a bomb on a carriage which he suspected was carrying Kingsford.
  • But it turned out that it was carrying the wife and daughter of a barrister named Pringle Kennedy, who lost their lives, as Kingsford escaped.

Arrest and execution

  • By midnight the entire town was aware of the incident and the Calcutta police were summoned to catch the duo.
  • Bose was arrested from a railway station called Waini where he had reached the next morning after having walked 25 miles.
  • Chaki on the other hand, killed himself before he could get arrested.
  • As Bose was brought handcuffed to the police station at Muzaffarpur, the entire town crowded around to take a look at the teenaged boy.
  • On July 13, 1908, he was finally sentenced to death.

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