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Nand Lal

Charkhi Dadri, Haryana

September 19, 2023 to September 19, 2024

Nand Lal was born on 15 June 1914, in the house of Chaudhary Gokul Ram Sangwan and Ram Kaur in the village of Atela, Charkhi Dadri district, Haryana. His mother, a visionary and courageous woman, instilled a sense of patriotism in Nand from an early age.

On 7 December 1931, he enlisted in the Indian army and demonstrated exceptional horse-riding skills in the Seventh Risale unit, earning numerous awards. He had a particular affinity for sports like Honda Hunter, Make Pie, and Polo.

On 3 May 1939, No. 7 Risala was transformed into Artillery and Nand became a part of the artillery. He later joined the Indian National Army (INA) to fight in World War II and liberate his country. Under the leadership of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, he hoisted the Indian flag in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and launched an attack from the Kohima-Imphal side. Netaji's famous slogan, "You give me blood, I will give you freedom," resonated deeply with him as he dedicated himself to the cause of India's freedom.

During his time fighting for India's independence, he endured imprisonment for nearly five years and faced inhumane tortures. He was finally released from jail on 22 June 1946 and returned to his native village of Atela, reuniting with his family after a six-year separation.

Throughout his life in the village, he actively engaged in educational, social and courageous endeavors, providing assistance to those in need. In recognition of his significant contribution to the freedom struggle, he received an honorary letter on 15 August 1985, during the centenary of the Indian National Congress (1885-1985).

Nand Lal passed away on 26 February 1996.

Copper Plate awarded by Government of Haryana on the occasion of centenary of Indian National Congress in 1985.

Source: Prakash Sangwan, Contributor for CCRT