Born: January 23, 1897
Died: August 18, 1945
Achievements: Passed Indian Civil Services Exam; elected Congress President in 1938 and 1939; formed a new party All India Forward block; organized Azad Hind Fauj to overthrow British Empire from India.
Subhas Chandra Bose, affectionately called as Netaji, was one of the most prominent leaders of Indian freedom struggle. Though Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru have garnered much of the credit for successful culmination of Indian freedom struggle, the contribution of Subash Chandra Bose is no less. He has been denied his rightful place in the annals of Indian history. He founded Indian National Army (Azad Hind Fauj) to overthrow British Empire from India and came to acquire legendary status among Indian masses.
Subhas Chandra Bose was born on January 23, 1897 in Cuttack, Orissa. His father Janaki Nath Bose was a famous lawyer and his mother Prabhavati Devi was a pious and religious lady. Subhas Chandra Bose was the ninth child among fourteen siblings. Subhas Chandra Bose was a brilliant student right from the childhood. He topped the matriculation examination of Calcutta province and graduated with a First class in Philosophy from the Scottish Churches College in Calcutta. He was strongly influenced by Swami Vivekananda's teachings and was known for his patriotic zeal as a student. To fulfill his parents wishes he went to England in 1919 to compete for Indian Civil Services. In England he appeared for the Indian Civil Service competitive examination in 1920, and came out fourth in order of merit. However, Subhas Chandra Bose was deeply disturbed by the Jallianwalla Bagh massacre, and left his Civil Services apprenticeship midway to return to India in 1921
After returning to India Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose came under the influence of Mahatma Gandhi and joined the Indian National Congress. On Gandhiji's instructions, he started working under Deshbandhu Chittaranjan Das, whom he later acknowledged his political guru. Soon he showed his leadership mettle and gained his way up in the Congress' hierarchy. In 1928 the Motilal Nehru Committee appointed by the Congress declared in favour of Domination Status, but Subhas Chandra Bose along with Jawaharlal Nehru opposed it, and both asserted that they would be satisfied with nothing short of complete independence for India. Subhas also announced the formation of the Independence League. Subhas Chandra Bose was jailed during Civil Disobedience movement in 1930. He was released in 1931 after Gandhi-Irwin pact was signed. He protested against the Gandhi-Irwin pact and opposed the suspension of Civil Disobedience movement specially when Bhagat Singh and his associates were hanged.
Subash Chandra Bose was soon arrested again under the infamous Bengal Regulation. After a year he was released on medical grounds and was banished from India to Europe. He took steps to establish centres in different European capitals with a view to promoting politico-cultural contacts between India and Europe. Defying the ban on his entry to India, Subash Chandra Bose returned to India and was again arrested and jailed for a year. After the General Elections of 1937, Congress came to power in seven states and Subash Chandra Bose was released. Shortly afterwards he was elected President of the Haripura Congress Session in 1938. During his term as Congress President, he talked of planning in concrete terms, and set up a National planning Committee in October that year. At the end of his first term, the presidential election to the Tripuri Congress session took place early 1939. Subhas Chandra Bose was re-elected, defeating Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramayya who had been backed by Mahatma Gandhi and the Congress Working Committee. Clouds of World War II were on the horizon and he brought a resolution to give the British six months to hand India over to the Indians, failing which there would be a revolt. There was much opposition to his rigid stand, and he resigned from the post of president and formed a progressive group known as the Forward Block.
Subhas Chandra Bose now started a mass movement against utilizing Indian resources and men for the great war. There was a tremendous response to his call and he was put under house arrest in Calcutta. In January 1941, Subhas Chandra Bose disappeared from his home in Calcutta and reached Germany via Afghanistan. Working on the maxim that "an enemy's enemy is a friend", he sought cooperation of Germany and Japan against British Empire. In January 1942, he began his regular broadcasts from Radio Berlin, which aroused tremendous enthusiasm in India. In July 1943, he arrived in Singapore from Germany. In Singapore he took over the reins of the Indian Independence Movement in East Asia from Rash Behari Bose and organised the Azad Hind Fauj (Indian National Army) comprising mainly of Indian prisoners of war. He was hailed as Netaji by the Army as well as by the Indian civilian population in East Asia. Azad Hind Fauj proceeded towards India to liberate it from British rule. Enroute it lliberated Andeman and Nicobar Islands. The I.N.A. Head quarters was shifted to Rangoon in January 1944. Azad Hind Fauj crossed the Burma Border, and stood on Indian soil on March 18 ,1944.
However, defeat of Japan and Germany in the Second World War forced INA to retreat and it could not achieve its objective. Subhas Chandra Bose was reportedly killed in an air crash over Taipeh, Taiwan (Formosa) on August 18, 1945. Though it is widely believed that he was still alive after the air crash not much information could be found about him.
Born on 15th October 1931 at Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu, Dr. Avul Pakir Jainulabdeen Abdul Kalam, specialized in Aeronautical Engineering from Madras Institute of Technology. Dr. Kalam made significant contribution as Project Director to develop India's first indigenous Satellite Launch Vehicle (SLV-III) which successfully injected the Rohini satellite in the near earth orbit in July 1980 and made India an exclusive member of Space Club. He was responsible for the evolution of ISRO's launch vehicle programme, particularly the PSLV configuration. After working for two decades in ISRO and mastering launch vehicle technologies, Dr. Kalam took up the responsibility of developing Indigenous Guided Missiles at Defence Research and Development Organisation as the Chief Executive of Integrated Guided Missile Development Programme (IGMDP). He was responsible for the development and operationalisation of AGNI and PRITHVI Missiles and for building indigenous capability in critical technologies through networking of multiple institutions. He was the Scientific Adviser to Defence Minister and Secretary, Department of Defence Research & Development from July 1992 to December 1999. During this period he led to the weaponisation of strategic missile systems and the Pokhran-II nuclear tests in collaboration with Department of Atomic Energy, which made India a nuclear weapon State. He also gave thrust to self-reliance in defence systems by progressing multiple development tasks and mission projects such as Light Combat Aircraft.
As Chairman of Technology Information, Forecasting and Assessment Council (TIFAC) and as an eminent scientist, he led the country with the help of 500 experts to arrive at Technology Vision 2020 giving a road map for transforming India from the present developing status to a developed nation. Dr. Kalam has served as the Principal Scientific Advisor to the Government of India, in the rank of Cabinet Minister, from November 1999 to November 2001 and was responsible for evolving policies, strategies and missions for many development applications. Dr. Kalam was also the Chairman, Ex-officio, of the Scientific Advisory Committee to the Cabinet (SAC-C) and piloted India Millennium Mission 2020.
Dr. Kalam took up academic pursuit as Professor, Technology & Societal Transformation at Anna University, Chennai from November 2001 and was involved in teaching and research tasks. Above all he took up a mission to ignite the young minds for national development by meeting high school students across the country.
In his literary pursuit four of Dr. Kalam's books - "Wings of Fire", "India 2020 - A Vision for the New Millennium", "My journey" and "Ignited Minds - Unleashing the power within India" have become household names in India and among the Indian nationals abroad. These books have been translated in many Indian languages.
Dr. Kalam is one of the most distinguished scientists of India with the unique honour of receiving honorary doctorates from 30 universities and institutions. He has been awarded the coveted civilian awards - Padma Bhushan (1981) and Padma Vibhushan (1990) and the highest civilian award Bharat Ratna (1997). He is a recipient of several other awards and Fellow of many professional institutions.
Dr. Kalam became the 11th President of India on 25th July 2002. His focus is on transforming India into a developed nation by 2020.
Swami Vivekananda on Work
Swami Vivekananda taught us how to do our work – any sort of work. He taught it not only in the little book, Karma Yoga, but in many other places throughout his recorded Works. In this special Provisions supplement, we have collected most of these pieces of advice, which we have classified into the following categories: general observations; our attitude towards the work itself; our conception of ourselves as workers; how to do our work; and our conception of our fellow workers.
By work alone men may get to where Buddha got largely by meditation or Christ by prayer.
Doing work is not religion, but work done rightly leads to freedom.
We have to work, for it is the only way to get out of maya.
Buddha is the ideal karma yogi, acting entirely without [personal] motive.
Our Attitude towards the Work
Ordinary mankind, driven everywhere by false desires, what do they know of work? He works who is not propelled by his own desires, by any selfishness whatsoever… He works who has nothing to gain from work. Who enjoys the picture, the seller or the seer?
If you want to help a person, never think what that person's attitude toward you should be.
Those who want to help mankind must take their own pleasure and pain, name and fame, and all sorts of interests, and make a bundle of them and throw them into the sea, and then come to the Lord.
Perfect sincerity, holiness, gigantic intellect, and an all-conquering will. Let only a handful of people work with these, and the whole world will be revolutionized.
One must learn, sooner or later, that one cannot get salvation if one does not try to seek the salvation of one's fellow beings. You work best when you work for others. There is no engine which can pull against the human heart. Feel, my children, feel; feel for the poor, the ignorant, the downtrodden; feel, till the heart stops and the brain reels and you think you will go mad. Constant defeat – let that not unnervethee. He who is the servant of all is their true master. Know for certain that he who will work will be he crown on my head! You [in India] may be astonished to hear that as practical Vedantins the Americans are better than we are.
All the work you do is subjective, is done for your own benefit. God has not fallen into a ditch for you and me to help him out. Try not to know that you work. The true man is he who is strong as strength itself yet has a woman's heart. Whether or not you know it, through all hands you work, through all feet you move.
How to Do Our Work
Every ounce of muscle in excess of what is beyond the needs of one's physical work is that much less of brain. Do not exercise too hard; it is injurious.
The best work is done by alternate repose and work.
The ideal person is one who, in the midst of the greatest silence and solitude, finds the most intense activity and in the midst of the most intense activity finds the silence and solitude of the desert.
Standing on Market Street [San Francisco], waiting for the street car, with all the rush going on around you, are you in meditation – calm and peaceful?
Our Conception of Ourselves
The great thing is to have faith in oneself. You cannot believe in God until you believe in yourself.
What makes the difference between an Englishman and you [Indians]? I have found the difference. The Englishman believes in himself and you do not.
Animals can do charitable work – bees, ants, dogs. People can be masters of themselves.
You have yourself manufactured your body, bit by bit. Nobody eats for you. All the responsibility for good or for evil is in you.
Say, "It is my nature;" never say "It is my duty."
Three things are necessary: purity, patience and perseverance.
Condemn none; if you can stretch out a helping hand, by all means do so.
If you want to reform John Doe, go and live with him. Don't try to reform him. If you have any of the divine fire, he will catch it.
Vedanta only preaches the principles and the method it leaves to you.
Please everyone without being a hypocrite and without being a coward.
Wisdom consists in carrying on the work by cleverly keeping all in good humour.
Many feel, but only a few can express. It is the power of expressing one's love and appreciation and sympathy for others that enables one person to succeed better in spreading the ideas than others.
Our teacher and Lord [Sri Ramakrishna] was so original, and each one of us will have to be original or nothing.
Even the greatest fool can accomplish a task if it is after his heart. But the intelligent one is he who can convert every work into one that suits his taste.
Get rid of the fundamental superstition that we are obliged to act through the body: we are not.
You will be able to work for the good of the world when you know for a fact that this work is all illusion. Be bold and face the truth! Be one with it/ Let visionscease/ Or if you cannot, dream, but truer dreams/eternal love and service free.
It is very difficult to superimpose divinity on human nature, but one is sure to succeed by repeated efforts; God is in every person whether he knows it or not; your loving devotion is bound to call up the divinity in him or her.
Do not pity anyone; look on all as your equal.
Our Conception of Our Fellow Workers
Have faith in man. If he is pursuing the false, it is because he cannot get the true. Put it in front of him and let him judge. He must see.
If you do good at all, you do it to yourself; feel that the receiver is the higher one. You serve the other because you are lower than he, not because he is low and you are high. Give as the rose gives perfume – because that is your nature.
A person should not be judged by the nature of his duties.
When you serve a ‘Jiva’ with the idea that he is a ‘Jiva’, it is ‘Daya’, compassion, not ‘Prem’, divine love. But when you serve him with the idea that he is the Self, it is ‘Prem’.
It is our privilege to be allowed to be charitable, for only so can we grow. The poor man suffers that we may be helped; let the giver kneel down and give thanks, let the receiver stand up and permit.
Do not create illusion by "helping" anyone.
Help another because you are in him and he is in you.
Learn to feel yourself in others' bodies.
The individual's life is in the life of the whole.
Love makes no distinction between person and person, between white and black, between brahmin and pariah, not even between a man and a woman. Love makes the whole universe one's own home.
I must tell you the truth: perhaps only half a dozen men and women will follow me in all my life; but they will be real men and women, pure and sincere.
During his travels across India, Swami Vivekanand was deeply touched by the terrible poverty and backwardness of the people. He was the first religious leader in India to understand and openly declare that the real cause of India's ruin was the neglect of the masses. The urgent need was to provide food and other bare requirements of life to the starving millions. For this, they should be trained about improved agricultural techniques, village industries, etc. It was in this context that Vivekanand grasped the core problem of poverty in India, which had never attracted the attention of social reformers of those days. Because of centuries of repression, the exploited masses had lost the confidence in their ability to improve. The priority was to instill into their minds the faith in themselves and for this they needed a revitalizing and inspiring message. Vivekanand could find this message in the principle of the Atman, the doctrine of the potential divinity of the soul, taught in Vedanta, the ancient system of religious philosophy of India. He saw that, in spite of poverty, the masses adhered to religion. But they had never been enlightened by the stimulating principles of Vedanta and how to apply them in practical life. Thus, the people needed two kinds of knowledge, firstly, secular knowledge to improve their economic condition and secondly, spiritual knowledge to infuse self-confidence and reinforce their morality. The challenge was to spread these two kinds of knowledge among the people. Education was the only answer that Vivekanand found.