A commemorative postage stamp on Hemu Kalani, an Indian Sindhi revolutionary during Indian Independence movement :
Issued on Oct 18, 1983
Issued for : Hemu Kalani, a Sindhi revolutionary and freedom fighter during the Indian Independence Movement. Indian Posts and Telegraphs Department is privileged to issue a commemorative stamp in the memory of this great martyr.
Type : Stamp, Mint Condition
Colour : Single colour
Denomination : 50 Paise
Name : Hemu Kalani
Born on Mar 23, 1923 at Sukkur, Sindh province, British India [now in Pakistan]
Died on Jan 21, 1943 at Sukkur, Sindh province, British India [now in Pakistan]
- Hemu Kalani belongs to that rare band of revolutionaries and martyrs whose indomitable spirits broke new resistance, for whom tortures of imprisonment have no meaning and death holds no terror. Hemu Kalani was so happy in his readiness to make the supreme sacrifice for the liberation of his motherland, that he gained weight during the last days which is most unusual for a prisoner condemned to die. While marching to gallows, he consoled his distressed mother by reminding her of her earlier teachings of Gita regarding the indestructibility of soul. So strong was his patriotic zeal that he pledged his next life also to the cause of India’s Freedom.
- Hemu Kalani was born at Sukkur in Sind (now in Pakistan), on 23rd March, 1923. He was the son of late Shri Pesumal Kalani and Smt. Jethi Bai. He was brave and patriotic right from his childhood. Ever at the age of 7, he used to leads the boys of his locality with the tri-colour in his hands. Along with his friends, he used to plead for boycotting all foreign goods and used to take an active part in persuading people to use Swadeshi goods. He was soon drawn to revolutionary activities and started participating in acts of terrorism for the sake of driving away the British. He was always leading the raids and in burning of vehicles belonging to the oppressors.
- In 1942, when Mahatma Gandhi gave the call “Quit India” and the slogan “Do or die“, Hemu Kalani also joined the mass movement. There was such active participation from the people of Sind Province in this movement that the British rulers had to send special troops consisting of European battalions. When Hemu Kalani came to know that these troops and the ammunition would be arriving in Sind by a railway train passing through his town, he decided to derail the train by removing the fishplates from the railway track. He and his friends were severely handicapped in not having any tools for loosening the nuts and bolts and for removing the fishplates. Time was also against them. Hemu, however, did not give up. He inspired his friends to loosen the nuts and bolts with the help of indigenous ropes and they started the job. However, before they could complete it, they were seen by the British troops and Hemu, in his effort to save his friends, was caught. He was imprisoned and tortured to give out the names of his friends but he stubbornly refused to divulge any information. He was tried under the then prevailing martial law and sentenced to death. People of Sind petitioned for mercy to the Viceroy but the death sentence was upheld, unless Hemu turned an approver and gave information regarding his fellow revolutionaries. There was no question of Hemu‘s accepting these conditions and he welcomed the impending death most cheerfully. This young freedom fighter and revolutionary was hung on 21st Jan., 1943.
- Hemu‘s is an example of unflinching courage and devotion to his motherland. He participated in Mahatma Gandhi‘s movements and at the same time, took recourse to terrorist activities also to drive away the foreigners who were keeping India captive. The names of patriots like Hemu Kalani would always be remembered fondly while studying the history of India‘s freedom struggle.