The President of India paid homage to Dr Rajendra Prasad, the first President of India, on his birth anniversary
A brief history of Dr. Rajendra Prasad(1884-1963)
- He was born in 1884 in Bihar’s Ziradei
- He was a Indian politician, lawyer, and journalist who was the first president of the Republic of India (1950–62).
- His father, Mahadev Sahai Srivastava, was a scholar of both Sanskrit and Persian languages. His mother, Kamleshwari Devi
- In June 1896, at an early age of 12, he was married to Rajavanshi Devi.
- Prasad joined the Presidency College, Calcutta in 1902, initially as a science student. He passed the F. A. under the University of Calcutta in March 1904 and then graduated with a first division from there in March 1905
- A devoted student as well as a public activist, he was an active member of the Dawn Society( under Satish Chandra Mukherjee)
- Prasad was instrumental in the formation of the Bihari Students Conference in 1906 in the hall of Patna College.
His role in India’s independence movement
- His first association with Indian National Congress was during the 1906 annual session organised in Calcutta, where he participated as a volunteer, while studying in Calcutta.
- Formally, he joined the Indian National Congress in the year 1911, when the annual session was again held in Calcutta
- During the Lucknow Session of Indian National Congress held in 1916, he met Mahatma Gandhi.
- During the satyagraha at Champaran in 1917, Mahatma Gandhi asked him to come with his volunteers
- He gave up his law practice in 1920 to join the noncooperation movement.
- As a journalist in the nationalist interest, he wrote for Searchlight in English, founded and edited the Hindi weekly Desh (“Country”), and started his lifelong campaign to establish Hindi as the national language.
- He was deeply influenced by Mahatma Gandhi and went to jail during the ‘Salt Satyagraha’ of 1931 and the ‘Quit India Movement’ of 1942.
- He was a president of INC in 1934, 1939, and 1947
- In 1946 Prasad was sworn in as minister for food and agriculture in the interim government preceding full independence.
- From 1946 to 1949 he presided over the Indian Constituent Assembly and helped to shape the constitution.
- Rajendra Prasad was unanimously elected president in 1950 and, after the first general election (1952), was chosen by an overwhelming majority of the new electoral college; in 1957 he was elected to a third term.
- Prasad retired from public life in 1962 because of his deteriorating health. That same year he was honoured with the Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award.
His literary works
- Satyagraha at Champaran (1922)
- Division of India (1946, online)
- Atmakatha (1946), his autobiography written during his 3-year prison term in Bankipur Jail
- Mahatma Gandhi and Bihar, Some Reminiscences(1949)
- Bapu Ke Kadmon Mein (1954)
- Since Independence (published in 1960)
- Bharatiya Shiksha
- At the feet of Mahatma Gandhi