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Urban Legend: Celebrating the heroes history has forgotten

DECCAN CHRONICLE.
Published Dec 24, 2016, 2:29 am IST
Updated Dec 24, 2016, 3:54 am IST
We remember the birthdays of film stars, cricketers, but when asked about the freedom fighters who sacrificed their life for us we go blank.
The calendars published by Mr Ramakrishna consists of photos and paintings of revolutionary leaders with their brief history about their contribution to the freedom struggle.
 The calendars published by Mr Ramakrishna consists of photos and paintings of revolutionary leaders with their brief history about their contribution to the freedom struggle.

Many of us remember the birthdays of film stars, cricketers and their contribution to their respective field. We remember how many runs they have scored, what records they have created and how many crores their movies have earned at the box-office. But when asked about the freedom fighters who sacrificed their life in the struggle for freedom most of us go blank. Independence Day and Republic Day re-ignite our memories, but only temporarily. This is the level of patriotism we have. Also while hundreds of leaders fought for freedom, we know only a few.

But here is 48-year-old Bangalorean Mr T.N. Ramakrishna, who with an intention to keep the spirit of patriotism alive among us is publishing patriotic calendars exclusively based on the revolutionary leaders. Mentioning that most of the syllabus in the current education system changes as and when the governments both at the centre and state change, Mr Ramakrishna said "As a citizen of India, we must know the history of the country. We must know the leaders who fought for it and lost their lives for the freedom of the nation. But whenever a new government takes charge, they try to highlight the works of the leaders of their choice thereby pushing the others leaders to dark."

 

The calendars published by Mr Ramakrishna consists of photos and paintings of revolutionary leaders with their brief history about their contribution to the freedom struggle. Not stopping at calendars, Mr Ramakrishna is also printing alphabetic charts with A for Aurobindo Ghosh, B for Bhagat Singh, Z for Zhansi Laxmi Bhai.

Asked on what triggered him to come up with such an initiative, Mr Ramakrishna explains "Both of my parents are freedom fighters and right from my childhood I was associated with many nationalistic patriotic organisations. I felt only a handful of leaders were getting the limelight, while the rest were ignored. With an intention to highlight the unsung heroes, I started the Rashtra Gaurava Samrakshana Parishath (RGSP) in the year 2004."

We have reached out to over 5 lakh students and over 10,000 teachers by way of holding patriotic functions, seminars, exhibitions through the organisation ever since its inception in 2004. From the year 2009, we felt why should our calendars bear only images of gods, scenic beauty and models and with the sponsorship of commercial organisations we began to publish patriotic calendars and alphabetic charts, he explained.

Calendars and charts printed are distributed freely to the schools, colleges, libraries, corporates across Karnataka just to keep the patriotic spirit alive among the students and youth. Further on occasions like birth and martyrdom anniversaries of freedom fighters like Lala Lajpat Rai and Bhagat Singh, Mr Ramakrishna organises free blood donation camps.

Asked on how he gathers information on the unknown revolutionary freedom fighters, Mr Ramakrishna said "We do research by collecting information of unsung freedom fighters by referring to all sorts of books on history. This apart, we also interact with freedom fighters who are alive and bring the hidden fighters to the limelight. Since 2009, we have highlighted over 350 revolutionary freedom fighters. There are thousands of leaders who should be highlighted."

Mr Ramakrishna believes that with these kind of initiatives taken up by him people will come to know the sacrifices and contributions of revolutionaries to India and keep the patriotic spirit alive among people.

Sharing his new plans for the year 2017, Mr Ramakrishna said that he is planning to felicitate 25 social activists every year who have significantly contributed to the state who are hitherto unnoticed by the society.

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