Gorakhpur (Uttra Pradesh), Aug.12 (ANI): Family members of the martyrs of India’s freedom struggle in Gorakhpur have expressed their lament over official apathy towards them.
Former freedom fighter Sriram Bachan Singh, who fought alongside Subhash Chandra Bose, said the pension he receives from the government is too little to feed his family.
“Even when I was in the service, serving the nation, we used to get paid very less, and now, even after retirement, the monthly pension that I get is very minimal. I cannot not even look after my children properly nor give them good education. Our condition has gone from bad to worse. There is no help from the government,” said Singh.
There are no commemoration ceremonies or memorial days observed in the martyrs’ honour. It is only their families who miss their presence and revere their sacrifice.
Recalling his son’s sacrifice Devsharan Pandey, the father of Santosh Pandey, who died while fighting militants in Srinagar, said they have not received the promised compensation from the state government.
“Whatever compensation that we were supposed to get from the federal government we got, but the compensation that we were supposed to get from the state government, we have not got and we do not even hope to get it,” said Pandey.
Kalavati Devi, the daughter of a martyr, sold off her ancestral land after her father was handed out a death sentence by the Britishers.
And now she runs from pillar to post just to get a day’s meal.
“I go around and ask people for food and that’s how I survive. There is no help from anyone. Even the government has not given me anything. I stay at other people’s home,” said Kalavati Devi, daughter of a martyr.
The freedom struggle was hard fought won but the real soldiers will die unsung. Their families live a dog’s life. (ANI)