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

Unsung Heroes Detail

Unsung Heroes Detail

M.A. Eswaran

Erode, Tamil Nadu

November 21, 2022 to November 21, 2023

M. A. Eswaran, was born to Muthukaruppan Pillai and Venkatalakshmi on 25 October 1895 at Karungalpalayam in Erode. When he read the news about the imprisonment and torture faced by V. O. Chidambaram Pillai, “The Tamil Helmsman” and great freedom fighter, fired him to participate in the freedom movement. M. A. Eswaran along with Thangaperumal Pillai started campaigns in favor of the Home Rule movement and conducted agitations against the Britishers. Eswaran relinquished his college education and soon became a full-time member of the Indian National Congress. Later, he entered into the freedom struggle. In the first week of August 1920, Mahatma Gandhi came to Erode along with Moulana Soukat Ali for support for the Khilafat Movement and Non-cooperation Movement. A joint meeting was held with Hindus and Muslims. M. A. Eswaran participated in the Non-cooperation Movement under the leadership of E.V. Ramaswami Naicker in 1921 and was arrested and imprisoned for 3 months in Coimbatore jail. In Erode, he started spinning Khadi in January 1921. The people were trained to make Khadi thread and clothes and were motivated to wear Khadi. A textile factory was established in Erode on 26 October 1921, in which M. A. Eswaran was a member. The Civil Disobedience Movement was launched in Erode, in which M.A.Eswaran participated and was imprisoned for one year and six weeks from 1932-1933 under section 188 I.P.C and kept in the Central jail of Coimbatore. Again from 1933-1934 he was sentenced to six months in jail and fined rupees two hundred under Section 17(1) Criminal Law Amendment Act. As he did not pay the fine, he was kept in jail. Mahatma Gandhi made his journey from December 20, 1933, to February 28, 1934, to both Tamil Nadu and Kerala. He reached Tirupur on 16 February 1934. M. A. Eswaran too arrived there and welcomed Mahatma to Kodumudi. M. A. Eswaran was unanimously elected for Erode area in the Madras Provincial Assembly in 1946. Apart from his contribution to the freedom struggle, he worked for the implementation of the Lower Bhavani Project. This was another achievement of M. A. Eswaran. Until his death in 1978, he sacrificed his entire life for the welfare of the people.