Matangini Hazra (1869-1942)
Was an Indian revolutionary who participated in the Indian independence movement until she was shot dead by the British Indian police in front of the Tamluk Police Station (of erstwhile Midnapore District) on September 29, 1942. She was affectionately known as Gandhi buri, Bangla for old lady Gandhi.
Matangini Hazra, who was 73 years at the time, led a pageant of six thousand supporters, mostly women volunteers, with the purpose of taking over the Tamluk police station. When the parade reached the outskirts of the town, they were prepared to disband under Section 144 of the Indian Penal Code by the Crown police. As she stepped forward, Matangini Hazra was shot once. Apparently, she had step forward and was appealing to the police not to shoot at the large amount.
The Biplabi newspaper of the parallel Tamluk National Government commented:
“” Matangini led one demonstration from the north of the criminal court building; even after the firing commenced, she continued to advance with the tri-colour flag, leaving all the volunteers behind. The police shot her three times. She continued marching despite wounds to the forehead and together hands. “”
As she was continually shot, she kept chanting Vande Mataram, translate as “hail to the Motherland”. She died with the flag of the Indian National Congress held high and still flying.
Kasturba Gandhi (April 11, 1869 – 22 February 1944)
Kasturba Gandhi, daughter of Gokuladas Makharji of Porbandar,tenderly called Ba, was the wife of Mohandas Gandhi.
Kasturba Gandhi, Mahatma Gandhi’s wife joined her husband while he was in South Africa and worked with him for many years there. She was a leader of Women’s Satyagraha for which she was inside. She helped her husband in the cause of Indigo workers in Champaran, Bihar and the No Tax operation in Kaira, Gujarat. She was arrested twice for picketing liquid and foreign cloth shops, and in 1939 for participating in the Rajkot Satyagraha.
Kasturba married Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi (Mahatma Gandhi) through agreement. They were both 13 years old. At that time, she was illiterate, and so Gandhi taught her to read and write — a potentially radical move, given the position of women in India at that time.
When Gandhi left to study in London in 1888, she remained in India to raise their newborn son is Harilal. She had three more sons – Manilal (1892), Ramdas (1897), and Devdas (1900).
In 1906, Mohandas Gandhi decided to practice brahmacharya, and the couple became celibate. Although she stood by her husband, she did not forever simply believe his ideas. Gandhi had to work hard to persuade her to see (and agree to) his points of view. Kasturba was deeply religious. Like her husband, she renounce all caste distinction and lived in ashrams.
Kasturba often connected her husband in political protest. She traveled to South Africa in 1897 to be with her husband. From 1904 to 1914, she was active in the Phoenix Settlement near Durban. During the 1913 protest against working conditions for Indians in South Africa, Kasturba was under arrest and sentence to three months in a hard labor prison. Later, in India, she sometimes took her husband’s place when he was under arrest. In 1915, when Gandhi returned to India to support indigo planters, Kasturba accompanied him. She taught hygiene, discipline, reading and writing to women and children.
Kasturba suffer from persistent bronchitis. Stress from the Quit India Movement’s arrest and ashram life caused her to fall ill. After constricting pneumonia, she died from a severe heart attack on February 22, 1944. She died in Mahatma Gandhi’s arms while both were still in prison. He was never the same behind her death.