Exactly 86 years ago, Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev Thapar and Shivaram Rajguru – the three revered figures of the Indian freedom struggle – were hanged on March 31, 1931 in Punjab’s Hussainwala (now in Pakistan).
On the Martyrs' Day, also known as Shaheed Diwas or Sarvodaya Day, Indians pay homage to the three martyrs, who paved way for India’s independence.
Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev were hanged by the British Raj for their involvement in the killing of John Saunders, who they mistook for British police superintendent, James Scott. Scott was their target because they believed he was instrumental in the death of nationalist leader Lala Lajpat Rai.
On the occasion of Martyr’s day, Rekhta, the renowned website for Urdu poetry and organiser of the Urdu festival JashneRekhta, posted a picture of letter written by Bhagat Singh when he was in jail.
The letter, in Urdu, was written by Bhagat Singh to his younger brother Kultar Singh, on March 3, 1931 – 20 days before he was hanged.
In the letter, Bhagat Singh wishes his brother good luck for his future, and also advises him to take care of his health and get educated well.
According to the translation available on the same thread, the letter reads:
Today, Prime Minister Narendra Modi paid tributes to the three martyrs, saying that India will not forget their courage and sacrifice.
“Remembering Bhagat Singh, Rajguru & Sukhdev on the day of their martyrdom. India will never forget their courage & sacrifice,” he said.
Remembering Bhagat Singh, Rajguru & Sukhdev on the day of their martyrdom. India will never forget their courage & sacrifice.— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 23, 2017
Meanwhile, the Border Security Force is also planning to put on display the pistol used by the freedom fighter Singh to kill British officer John Saunders in 1928, at its new arms museum in Indore.
At present, the historic semi-automatic 32-bore Colt-make pistol is on display at the old museum of the city-based Central School of Weapon Central School of Weapons and Tactics.
In Pakistan, the Lahore high court on Tuesday directed to ensure security for those who want to observe martyrdom day of Indian freedom fighters Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev on March 23.
Every year, people assemble at Shadman Chowk to raise the demand for naming it after Singh. In 2015, some religious groups had threatened Singh's followers and told them not to observe his martyrdom day.