• Lala Lajpat Rai  was an Indian revolutionary, politician, and author, generally known as Lala Lajpat Rai. (The term ‘Lala’ is a honorific.) He was popularly known as Punjab Kesari. He was one of the three members of the Lal Bal Pal trio.
  • Lajpat Rai was born on 28 January 1865 into an Agrawal Jain family as the eldest son of six children of Munshi Radha Krishna, an Urdu and Persian government school teacher and Gulab Devi Aggarwal at Dhudike in the Faridkot district of the Punjab Province of British India (now in Moga district, Punjab, India). He spent much of his youth in Jagraon. His house still stands in Jagraon and houses a library and museum. He also built the first educational institute R.K. High school in Jagraon.
Lala lajpat Rai
Lala lajpat Rai

Political journey of Lala lajpat Rai

  • For his political activities, Lajpat Rai was detained and sent to Mandalay in modern-day Myanmar in 1907.
    • He lived in exile for a year and published “The History of the Indian National Movement,” a book that described the history of the campaign for Indian independence and the hardships of the Indian people.
  • Lala Lajpat Rai gave up his law practice to devote all of his time and energy to rescuing his country from the British Empire.
  • To stress the horrific character of British rule in India, he saw the necessity of outlining the situation in the Indian Freedom fight to important nations throughout the world.
  • In 1914, he visited Britain, and in 1917, he visited the USA.
    • He established the Indian Home Rule League of America in New York in October 1917.
    • From 1917 until 1920, he resided in the United States.
  • Lajpat Rai was detained and imprisoned once more in 1919 as a result of his political involvement.
    • Following his release from jail in 1920, he was swiftly chosen to lead the Indian National Congress during its Special Session in Kolkata, which coincided with the beginning of Mahatma Gandhi‘s Non-Cooperation Movement. He was thereafter detained from 1921 and 1923.
  • In 1921, he founded Servants of the People Society, a non-profit welfare organization, in Lahore, which shifted its base to Delhi after the partition.
  • In Punjab, he organized fierce protests against the British in response to their terrible conduct in Jallianwallah Bagh and Rowlatt Act before.
    • Lajpat Rai disagreed with Gandhi’s decision to put the movement on hold following the Chauri Chaura tragedy and went on to form the Congress Independence Party.
  • To examine constitutional improvements, the Simon Commission went to India in 1929.
    • The fact that there were only British representatives on the Commission severely incensed the leaders of India.
    • Lala Lajpat Rai was on the frontline of the protests that erupted across the nation.


  • When the Simon Commission visited Lahore on 30 October 1928, Lajpat Rai led a non-violent march in protest against it. The superintendent of police, James A. Scott, ordered the police to lathi (baton) charge the protesters and personally assaulted Rai.
  • He did not fully recover from his injuries and died on 17 November 1928.

Literary works

  • Along with founding Arya Gazette as its editor, he regularly contributed to several major Hindi, Punjabi, English, and Urdu newspapers and magazines.
  • He also wrote biographies of Mazzini, Garibaldi, Shivaji, and Shri Krishna.
  • He was a prolific writer and his important literary works include-
    • Young India: An Interpretation and a History of the Nationalist Movement from Within
    • England’s Debt to India
    • Evolution of Japan
    • India’s Will to Freedom,
    • Message of the Bhagavad Gita
    • Political Future of India
    • Problem of National Education in India
    • The Depressed Glasses
    • The History of the Indian National Movement
    • The story of my deportation

Religious views

  • Lala Lajpat Rai was a religious person and believed that the Hindu society itself should fight against the practice of caste discrimination, untouchability, and the position of women in society. He considered Vedas an integral part of the Hindu religion and advocated for people to go through Vedas, read, and recite the mantras.
  • Lala Lajpat Rai was highly aware of the necessity of communal harmony in the face of the freedom struggle. The unity displayed among Hindus and Muslims was deteriorating, and there were riots between Muslims and Hindus in the North-Western-Frontier Province. The riot in Kohat resulted in the deaths of around 100 Hindus and about 400 people were shifted to Rawalpindi.
  • To foster unity and harmony among different religions, a National Council was established, post the conference. These deliberations did not create fruitful results, and Lala Lajpat Rai was disappointed with the riots and outcomes. He stood along with the Hindu community and organised movements for the ‘Purification of Hinduism’ and ‘Organisation of Hinduism’. According to shreds of evidence, Lala Lajpat Rai had written around 13 articles in The Tribune, in the midst of communal tensions.
  • Most of his ideas were reflective of the diversity of Indian culture. He took efforts to convince the leaders of the Indian National movement regarding the efforts of the British to divide India into communal lines through the Morley-Minto Reforms and the Government of India Act of 1919.
  • In 1925, he presided over the meeting of Hindu Mahasabha in Calcutta. He preached on the necessity of Hindu Dharma and the need to uphold it for an awakening of Hindus.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments