Less is known to us about the tribal heroes and their role in fighting the tyranny of Britishers during the freedom movement. However, our ignorance towards there efforts can’t undermine the pride that they have earned.
#BirsaMunda, freedom fighter in British era, is remembered for bringing a tribal revolution in India. Born on November 15, 1875 his sacrifice & struggle for preserving the rights & culture of tribal communities in India will continue to inspire generations.#धरतीआबा_बिरसामुंडा— Rajendra Pal Gautam (@AdvRajendraPal) November 15, 2019
One such tribal hero of India is “Birsa Munda”. Well, if you have logged into your Twitter account today and are seeing #धरतीआबा_बिरसामुंडा trend then there is nothing to be confused as it’s the 144th birth anniversary of Birsa Munda.
Humble tributes to great freedom fighter #BirsaMunda the face of tribal revolt against the britishers.— Dr. Nitin Raut (@NitinRaut_INC) November 15, 2019
His struggle for preserving the rights and culture of tribal communities in India will continue to inspire generations.#धरतीआबा_बिरसामुंडा pic.twitter.com/VU8uS2ZrQZ
While we all know about Bhagat Singh’s sacrifice at a young age a very few know that Birsa Munda too died at the age of 25 facing the torture under the police captivity. To drive away your ignorance and to bring more insights from this tribal hero’s life we bring some facts about him that are less known. Check them out.
Raised Voice Against Tribal Slavery
Munda organized tribals to fight against the forceful land grabbing carried out by the British government which turned the tribals into bonded laborers and forced upon them abject poverty.
He is regarded as ‘Dharti Abba’ (the hashtag on Twitter) which means Earth Father. A title that is bestowed upon him as an honor to his efforts.
Started A Religion Of His Own For Tribals
At a time when tribal beliefs and practices were considered strange and were dominated by irrational and dangerous practices like witchcraft and the Christian missionaries were trying to convert them in numbers, Birsa started his own religion.
The religion was called Birsait and its followers were called Birsaities. The aim of Munda through the introduction of new religion was to reform the tribal society and help them adopt a code of conduct.
The Ulgulan Movement
This is one of the most highlighted movement of Birsa Munda’s life. The Tribal leader organized the people of Chotanagpur region (present-day Jharkhand) to revolt against the exploitative and discriminatory practices of Britishers towards tribals.
The movement known as Ulgulan or The Great Tumult led to the passing of the Chotanagpur Tenancy Act restricting the practice of passing on of land from the tribal people to non-tribals.
Died At The Age Of 25
Much before Bhagat Singh died at a young fighting the Britishers Birsa Munda laid his life at an age of 25 confronting the discriminatory policies of Britishers against the tribals and putting in efforts for reforming tribal way of life.
He was captured by the British forces when he was resting with his army at Jamkopai forest in Chakradharpur and was put in Ranchi jail. After 3 months of his capture, Munda died on June 9, 1900, in the Ranchi jail succumbing to the British torture. The British government reported the cause of his death as Cholera.
Munda’s Presence In The Parliament
While we see the portraits of Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Ambedkar, Subhash Chandra Bose etc on the walls of Indian Parliament none would have expected a tribal leader like Munda to be there.
Birsa Munda is the only tribal leader whose portrait hangs in Parliament of India. Now, you can probably understand how high the stature of this tribal hero of India is.