Unsung Heroes | History Corner | Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, Ministry of Culture, Government of India

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Paying tribute to India’s freedom fighters

Veer Narayan Singh

Raipur, Chhattisgarh

August 09, 2021 to December 31, 2021

Veer Narayan Singh was a landlord from Sonakhan, Chhattisgarh. He spearheaded the 1857 war of Indian independence in Chhattisgarh. He was hanged at Jaistambh Chowk of Raipur, Chhattisgarh.

He is also known and considered as "The 1st Chhattisgarhi freedom fighter". His ancestors were from the Gond tribe and were residing in Sarangarh. Later on, they changed their affiliation from the Gond to the Binjhwar tribe and moved to Sonakhan in Raipur district.

The British arrested him in 1856 for looting a trader's grain stocks and distributing it amongst the poor in a severe famine year. In 1857 with the help of the soldiers of the British Army at Raipur, Veer Narayan Singh Binjhwar escaped from prison. He reached Sonakhan and formed an army of 500 men. Under the leadership of Smith, a powerful British army was dispatched to crush the Sonakhan army. Veer Narayan Singh's martyrdom has been resurrected in the 1980s and he has become a potent symbol of Chhattisgarhi pride. He was executed on 10 December 1857 at Jaistambh Chowk of Raipur. He became the first martyr from Chhattisgarh in the War of Independence. The Government of Chhattisgarh named the “Shaheed Veer Narayan Singh International Cricket Stadium” in honour of him.