Jayaprakash Narayan was born in Uttar Pradesh in 1902. He want to play major role in India’s fight for independence while playing a significant role in activism in the post-independence years as well. Here are some facts about Narayan you should know.
1. Was known as LokNayak
Born on the 11th of October, 1902, Narayan came to be known as LokNayak (People’s hero) for his credible work in the field of social reform and independent activism.
2. Won the Bharat Ratna
Narayan was posthumously awarded India’s greatest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna in 1999. He also received the Magsaysay award on account of his public service.
3. Married a freedom fighter
Narayan at an early age of 18 married Prabhavati Devi, a freedom fighter herself who was to later become an inmate of the Mahatma Gandhi’s ashram, upon his request.
4. Washed dishes to pay his fees
In 1922 Narayan travelled to the US, where he was admitted into Berkley. To pay for his education he had to a number of menial jobs from plucking grapes to washing dishes and mending automobiles as a mechanic.
5. Jailed several times
Narayan was jailed and tortured several times by the British. He was was one of the frontrunners of the Quit India movement.
6. Was carried on shoulders
Not because he was dead, but because he was ill, Yogendra Shukla a fellow colleague of the nationalist movement carried Narayan on his shoulders to Gaya – a distance of 124 km.
7. Started the “Total Revolution”
He called it the Sampoorna Kranti, as Narayan campaigned for total transformation in the Indian political system as it had become corrupt.
8. Stood up against Indira Gandhi
In 1975 Indira Gandhi declared a national emergency after Narayan and others refused to budge on their claims that she had violated constitutional and electoral laws –something that was confirmed by the Allahabad High Court. He was subsequently jailed by Gandhi for his protests.
9. His death was announced before his death
The Indian PM mistakenly declared him dead, leading to national mourning, while he was still admitted in the hospital. Later, when informed about the incident he smiled.