It is a unfortunate that with the passage of time, we are losing the memory of the noble sons of India and one of them is surely Swami Sraddhananda. How many of us are familiar with the name of Swami Sraddhananda? He should have been one of the most revered personalities in the history of Indian freedom struggle and termed as one of the true liberators of the Hindu society as well. We draw vital inspirations from the life history of this venerated sage.
Swami Sraddhananda was the founder of "Gurukul Kangri", positioned in the religious city of Haridwar, and played one of the most vital roles in the national freedom struggle. His life was full of a lot of ups and downs but it was his intrinsic virtues that helped him to overwhelm all forms of adversities. Here is a brief analysis of his successes as a leader. Swami Sraddhananda is regarded as the pioneer in women’s education and it is said had there been no such person, the cause of womens' education would not have reached the present level. The same is said regarding his pioneering work in widow remarriage and class reformation.
Nevertheless, the aforesaid acts were only a miniscule in his biography. He had the dream of setting up a new form of Gurukul and this can be found from his arduous performance in implementing the same in several parts of pre-partition India. In due course, especially the arrest and deportation of Lala Lajpat Rai, his association with the national freedom struggle got deeper.
The Shuddhi step pioneered by Swami Dayananda Saraswati and adopted by Arya Samaj under guidance of Swami Sraddhananda saved millions of Hindus not even from being lost and also opened doors closed from centuries for entry of countless brothers and sisters who were lost with the cruel passage of time. On 13 Feb 1923 in Agra Swami-ji established Bhartiya Hindu Shuddhi Sabha of which he was elected president and Lala Hansraj as vice president.
An example of the Shuddhi work done by Swami-ji involved over 30,000 Malkana Rajputs and their restoration in the Hindu society and saving of thousands of Hindus from conversion, a strong and hidden agenda of Muslims in the subcontinent.
All these notable and revolutionary successes were too much for the fanatic Muslims to withstand and on 23 rd December 1926 he was assassinated by Abdul Rashid, a Muslim fanatic. The assassin entered his home at Naya Bazar, Delhi, in the form of a visitor and fired two bullets point-black into his chest in due course. Thus ended a great life.
25th Dec, 1926 witnessed a wave of emotions in the streets of Delhi as millions of people assembled to have the last glimpse of Swami ji who dedicated himself for the Vedic Hindu Dharma. Shraddhananda Park in Kolkata was named after the saint. Hindu Samhati, a major Hindu force in the eastern part of the Indian subcontinent, has held major meetings here. Numerous other memorials were also erected across India to commemorate the great saint and his deeds.