Historians wrote many books to keep the gallant acts of freedom fighters alive. Moreover, various governments also built monuments to mark the heroism of the brave leaders. However, there are numerous other acts that form an integral part of our freedom struggle that jolted the British rule. But sadly, these exploits have been relegated into oblivion.

Here, we bring one such heroic incident that will definitely give you goosebumps. It was the time when the wave of ‘Quit India Movement’ hit Bihar’s capital Patna. Many leaders, from all walks of life took to the streets to protest against British rule. They stirred up their activities and the movement was at its peak. In a retaliatory move, British Police started arresting the leaders of the movement.

The atmosphere in Patna became very tense. One of the topmost leaders of the movement Dr. Anugrah Narain (1887–1957) was arrested. The news of his arrest spread like current. Within no time, the movement gathered unprecedented momentum.

In such a volatile atmosphere, no quarters, including the students could stop themselves to come forward and join the movement.
Inspired by Gandhiji’s slogan ‘Do or Die”, a crowd of around 6,000 students arrived at the gates of the Patna Secretariat on the morning of August 11, 1942. They all had one goal, to hoist the national flag on the top of the Patna Secretariat building.

Even though the students assured of peaceful flag hoisting, the military police, under the command of the District Magistrate WG Archer forcefully stopped the unarmed students. As the struggle to enter the building premises continued, at 2 pm, a group of seven students decided to unfurl the national flag at any cost.

As the seven students struggled to reach the top, they were all shot dead on the orders of Archer. After independence, a monument named ‘The Martyr's Memorial’, also known as ‘Shaheed Smarak’ was built just in the front of the assembly building in Patna. The foundation stone of Martyr's Memorial was laid on August 15 1947 by the then Bihar governor Jairam Das Daulatram.

Written by Raju Kumar/JPN

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