This Day in History (11-Aug-1908) – Khudiram Bose, a Bengali revolutionary in India’s struggle for freedom, was hanged

Khudiram Bose, a young political activist from Bengal, was not only one of the most prominent figures in India’s fight for freedom from British rule, but also the youngest revolutionary that the Indian independence movement had witnessed. Inspired by the speeches of Sri Aurobindo, Khudiram Bose took part in the secret planning sessions that were held by Sri Aurobindo and Sister Nivedita. Shortly after, in the year 1904, Khudiram Bose shifted from Tamluk to the main town of Medinipur at the age of 15.

In the year 1905, Khudiram Bose became involved with the political party Jugantar to show his disobedience to the British government following the Partition of Bengal the same year. Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki from Jugantar were sent to the town of Muzaffarpur in Bihar to carry out the killing of Kingsford, the magistrate of Calcutta Presidency. The two revolutionaries went to Muzaffarpur, adopted the code names of Haren Sarkar and Dinesh Roy respectively, and took shelter in the ‘dharmashala’ of Kishorimohan Bandopadhyay. They decided to shoot Kingsford when he was on his way from the European Club to his home or vice versa.

On April 30, 1908, Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki took position outside the European Club and targeted the carriage of Kingsford as it moved out of the club at around 8:30 in the evening. The bombs and the pistol shots hit the carriage. Khudiram Bose and Prafulla Chaki immediately fled the place of crime thinking that their task were complete, only to be informed later that it was the wife and daughter of barrister Pringle Kennedy who were traveling inside Kingsford’s carriage. On May 1, 1908, Khudiram Bose was taken under arrest for his involvement in the Muzaffarpur killings. Khudiram Bose who surprised many by embracing his death gracefully by going to the gallows on August 11, 1908 with a smile on his face.