One of the most important Indian Freedom Fighters of the Indian Freedom Movement was Ashfaqulla Khan. Apart from his activism and sacrifice, he is also known for his poetry, shayaris and his friendship with freedom fighter Ram Prasad Bismil. Ashfaqulla’s story is a lesson to those people who believed that Hindus and Muslims did not fight for India’s freedom together. Even today Ashfaq is the ideal example of the unity of Hindus and Muslims in India. On 22nd October the nation is remembering him on his birth anniversary.
Let’s take a look at this intellectual freedom fighter’s story for a slice of his life.
Fond Of Poetry Since Young Age
Ashfaqulla Khan was born on 22 October 1900 in Shahjahanpur, Uttar Pradesh, in a Pathan family. His father was Shafeequlla Khan and his Mother was Mazhoor-Un-Nisa, they had a total of 6 kids and Ashfaq was the youngest. He was fond of poetry from a very young age, but after knowing and hearing about his elder brother’s classmate Ram Prasad Bismil and his poems, he became his admirer.
Gandhi’s Non-Cooperation Movement
Ashfaqulla wrote poems with the pen name of “Hasrat” and his poems showed he has a love for his nation and they were full of patriotism. When Ram Prasad Bismil’s name came in the Mainpuri Scandal, freedom fighter Ashfaq made it his mission to meet Ram Prasad one day. During this time in 1920, Gandhi Ji introduced the Non-Cooperation Movement against the Britishers and he was also a part of it.
In 1922, due to Chori-Chaura Scandal, Gandhi Ji had to take back the Non-Cooperation Movement and the nation was remorseful about it. Because of this, many of the youth in India took up the road to revolution. Ashfaq was one of those revolutionaries. He first joined the Non-Cooperation Movement and then joined the revolution.
Friendship Of Ashfaqulla & Bismil
Ashfaqulla Khan was an admirer of Ram Prasad Bismil from childhood, Ashfaq met Bismil before he became a revolutionary, where he introduced himself as the younger brother of his classmate Riyasat. Ashfaq also shared his pen name and his poetry with Ram Prasad and the latter was impressed with it. After this meeting, they became the best of friends.
Both Were Famous Even Amongst Revolutionaries
After the disappointment from Gandhi, Bismil and his friends created the Hindustan Republican Association in 1924. Ashfaq and Bismil were together in this. Both of them had already become very good friends after their poetic love for poems. And their friendship was also very famous among the revolutionaries.
In need of weapons to fight, the revolutionaries planned on looting a train in Kakori District. The plan was led by Bismil as this whole plan was his idea. On 25th August 1925, the loot took place and it was a success. They did not get arrested for a month even. But, slowly all the revolutionaries started getting arrested.
He Gave A Tough Time To Britishers
Ram Prasad Bismil was arrested on 25th October 1925 but police couldn’t find even a trace of Ashfaq. He left for Bihar and travelled to Varanasi where he worked in an engineering company for 3 months. Ashfaq wanted to go study engineering abroad, so he went to Delhi for it, he was fully prepared to go and leave India. But, an informant arrested him through betrayal.
Even though Bismil and Ashfaq were arrested for the same crime, they were kept in a separate jail. Britishers tried their best to turn Ashfaq against Bismil but he didn’t nudge. Both friends were hanged on 19th December 1927, separately. He was only 27 but had made his mark.