Chief architect of the uprising
Masterda Surjya Sen, the Chief architect of the uprising was a teacher by profession. His nickname Masterda means ‘teacher brother’.Surjya Sen’s plan was to capture Chittagong’s two main armouries and take down the communications and railway lines.His plan also included assassinating the members of the European Club – military and government officials who were responsible for siding with the British to maintain the Raj.
Keypeople involved in the Uprising.
|Tarakeswar Dastidar, the new president of the Chittagong Branch Jugantar Party, who made an unsuccessful attempt to rescue Masterda from the Chittagong Jail was also hanged alongside his friend. |
He was one of the major participants in the looting of the Chittagong Armoury. He was in school when he impressed Surjya Sen with his courage, valour, wit, intellect and devotion toward his cause.
One of Surjya’s closest friends, Nirmal was a passionate revolutionary who had already been sent to jail once prior to the Chittagong attack.
In 1932, Surjya assigned the Bengali revolutionary to lead a team of 12 men for an attack on the Pahartali European Club, which bore the sign ‘Dogs and Indians not allowed’. The team was instructed to carry cyanide in case they were caught. The raid was successful but Pritilata, who was dressed as a man was trapped and committed suicide.
In 1931 Surjya entrusted her with Pritilata Waddedar to attack the European Club in Chittagong. A week before the attack, she was arrested during the reconnaissance of the area. She went underground after release on bail. On February 17, 1933, the police encircled their hiding place and Surjya Sen was arrested, but Kalpana was able to escape.
He was a Bengali freedom fighter, activist and the chief architect of the anti-British freedom movement in Chittagong. By 1923 he spread the revolutionary organisation in different parts of Chittagong. Aware of the limited equipment and other resources of the freedom fighters, he was convinced of the need for secret Guerrilla warfare against the colonial government. One of his early successful undertakings was a broad day robbery at the treasury office of the Assam-Bengal Railway at Chittagong on December 23, 1923. He was arrested in February 1933 and was hanged on January 12, 1934.
Sophisticated and suave, he was often mistaken for an Englishman and that is what he used to his advantage on the fateful night of April 18, as he infiltrated the British Cantonment posing as a British officer.
The most senior and experienced of the group, Ambika was responsible for finance and procurement.
This Bengali revolutionary and politician participated in the Chittagong armoury raid in 1930. After the trial, he was deported to the Cellular Jail in Port Blair in 1932. After independence, he became a leader of the Communist Party of India
Books written on the uprising
Do and Die: The Chittagong Uprising: 1930-34 by Manini Chatterjee
· All Six original leaders of the Chittagong Uprising - Surjya Sen, Nirmal Chandra Sen, Lokenath Bal, Ambika Chakrabarti, Ananta Singh and Ganesh Ghos h, were participants in the Congress-led Civil Disobedience movement launched in 1919.
· They were bitterly disappointed by Gandhi's decision to call off the movement in 1922 in the wake of the Chauri Chaura incident. It was as members of the District Cong ress Committee and other mass fronts of the Congress that they planned and trained for the armed attack on the Chittagong armoury, police headquarters and European club on April 18, 1930, an attack they hoped would yield them a sufficiently large quantit y of arms and ammunition. They hoped it would be the prelude to a general uprising. They built up an 'army' amongst teenage recruits
· who were given physical training in physical training clubs, and secret training in arms under cover - a parallel activit y which the district administration did not get wise to.
The scene explained by someone from their time
Surya Sen And Chittagong Uprising
After her release in 1939, Kalpana graduated from Calcutta University in 1940 and became a part of the Communist Party of India. In 1946, she contested for the Bengal Legislative Assembly as a communist candidate from Chittagong but lost. Kalpana Dutta died in Calcutta on February 8, 1995
In 1943, Kalpana Dutta married Purab Chand Joshi, and had two sons :Suraj and Chand. Chand Joshi was a famous journalist who worked for Hindustan Times. He wrote a book called Bhindranwale: Myth and Reality (1985). Suraj Chand’s wife Manini (nee Chatterjee) wrote a book on the Chittagong Armory Raid: Do and Die, which is the base for Ashutosh Gowariker’s movie Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Se.
Among the armed revolutionaries was the
In 1949, a Bengali movie Chattagram Astragar Lunthan was made on the Chittagong armoury raid. It was directed by Nirmal Chowdhury.
In 2010, a Hindi movie, Khelein Hum Jee Jaan Sey was made on the Chittagong armoury raid. It was directed by Ashutosh Gowarikar, staring Abhishek Bachchan and supported by Deepika Padukone. It was a period thriller, based on the book Do and Die: The Chittagong Uprising 1930-34 by Manini Chatterjee.