Remembering Jayaprakash Narayan, the people’s hero

What is the news?

Recently biography of JP Narayan – The Dream of Revolution, authored by Bimal Prasad and Sujata Prasad, was released. It is an excellent account of his life, containing details about the various stages of his evolution.

Who is JP Narayan?

He was born on 11th October 1902 in Sitabdiara, Bihar. He is also known as “Lok Nayak”. People also affectionately called him JP. He was a freedom fighter and one of the pioneers of the socialist movement in India. He was a man of great intellect and ethical values and standards.

What were the contributions of JP Narayan?

He worked relentlessly for the poor and the underprivileged and became a symbol in the fight against corruption, anti-democratic conduct. He fought against the repressive practices of Indira Gandhi’s government in the 1970s. Furthermore, he also created support for the Bhoodan movement.

How did JP evolve as a leader?

JP’s life can be studied under various phases. His formative years were the ones where he evolved as a political leader. He then turned to socialism. He also waged a guerrilla struggle against the British in the Terai region of Nepal. 

However, his life had a transition from socialism to Sarvodaya. This also led to the initiation of the Total Revolution.

What is Total Revolution?

It is a revolution against Indira Gandhi Regime, as she was found guilty of violating electoral laws by the Allahabad High Court. JP advocated a program of social transformation which he termed ‘Sampoorna Kranti’ (total revolution) in 1974 against corruption in public life.

This resulted in the defeat of the Indira Gandhi government in 1977 and the installation of the first-ever non-Congress government at the Centre. 

What is so great was his stature, the position of Prime minister or President was within his reach, but he chose to work for the people at the grassroots level. This made him a true Lok Nayak.

Awards and recognitions

Jayaprakash Narayan was posthumously conferred with India’s highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna in 1999.

Source: This article is based on “Remembering Jayaprakash Narayan, the people’s hero” published in Indian Express on 9th October.

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