Chennai, India +91

Prabhudayal Vidyarthi

(1925 – 1977) – (Uttar Pradesh)

Prabhu Dayal Vidyarthi (Aged 52) was born in Jogiya Udaipur, Siddarthnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India in 1925. He was a Freedom Fighter, Indian independence activist, Gandhian, Writer, Social Worker, and politician. At the age of 9 or 10, he left home in search of Azaadi after hearing Thakkar Bapa’s public address spreading Mahatma Gandhi’s quest for “FREE INDIA” and became a close aide of Mahatma Gandhi.

He followed Thakkar Bapa from Uska, in Siddharth Nagar district, to meet Gandhiji, who was perplexed to see such a young boy wanting to participate in the “Indian Freedom Struggle”. However, he allowed Prabhu Dayal to stay at ‘Segaon’, which later became known as Sevagram, where Gandhi personally taught him. Prabhu Dayal actively participated in Quit India Movement, traveling widely across India, which is detailed in “Apni Baat,” an account of his travels and hideouts.

The British had put an award of ₹5000 for his arrest. He was eventually asked to surrender by Gandhi and was finally arrested at Sevagram Wardha by the British for “actively supporting and helping the underground organization of the mass movement of August 8, 1942,” the outset of Quit India Movement. He was immediately put in an isolation cell, questioned, and tortured because of his participation in Quit India Movement and close association with Gandhi and other prominent leaders such as Subhas Chandra Bose.

Prabhudayal’s condition at his release from jail was a telling story of what went behind bars, and the same was published in the English daily, The Hindustan Times, on 4 November 1942. This was taken up with the British Government by Gandhiji on his release when he came back to Sevagram in a dilapidated condition, as detailed in Gandhi’s correspondence with the British (Page 371, letter no. 686, LETTER TO SIR EVAN M. JENKINS). The fact that he was “tortured” at Delhi Red Fort was vehemently denied by the British. He passed away on 7 September 1977, in Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh, India. A postcard was issued by Sevagram Ashram to honor his arrest.