Biography of Aruna Asaf Ali -

Biography of Aruna Asaf Ali

Biography of Aruna Asaf Ali


Aruna Asaf Ali Biography

Born: July 16, 1909
Died: July 29, 1996

Successes Aruna Asaf Ali was an active participant in the Quit India Movement; elected as the first Delhi Mayor. was awarded an award of the Lenin Prize for peace in 1975, and also The Jawahar Lal Nehru Award to promote International understanding in 1991; awarded the Bharat Ratna in 1998.

Aruna Asaf Ali is a renowned hero of India’s struggle for freedom. The moment that she was redeemed was in 1942, during the Quit India Movement and she took to the stage to honor the occasion. She unfurled the flag of India during the Gowalia Tank maidan to signal the start of the Quit India Movement and was a legend to hundreds of young people who took to the streets to follow her.

Aruna Asaf Ali was born Aruna Ganguly on the 16th of July 1909, in Kalka (Haryana) within a traditional Hindu Bengali family. She received her education at Sacred Heart Convent in Lahore as well as in Nainital. After finishing school she was a teacher at the Gokhale Memorial School in Calcutta. In Allahabad, she met her spouse, Asaf Ali, a prominent Congressman who was aged 23 years than her. They got married in 1928 despite parental protests based on religion and age.




As Asaf Ali had been heavily involved in the struggle for freedom and following her marriage Aruna Asaf Ali also sank into it. The first time she took part in a major political event occurred in her participation in the Salt Satyagraha in 1930 when she spoke at public gatherings and was a leader in the procession. British Government accused her of being a “vagrant” and sentenced her to a year’s prison. When political prisoners were freed as a result of Gandhi-Irwin’s agreement, Aruna was not allowed to be released. However, a mass protest in favor of her release forced the British government officials to release her.

The arrest was repeated in 1932 and was incarcerated in Tihar Jail. Then, in Tihar Jail she went on a hunger strike to protest against the conditions that were imposed on prisoners of the political sphere. In protest, she saw improvement in conditions. However, she was sent to solitary confinement at Ambala. Following being released, she stepped from the national movement for 10 years.

In 1942, she attended the Bombay Congress Session with her husband. There, the historic Quit India resolution was adopted on the 8th of August. After Congress leaders were arrested, Congress leaders were detained on the day following the resolution was approved, Aruna presided over the flag-raising ceremony at Gowalia Tank Maidan in Bombay. She was the spark that started the movement. She became an active participant in the Quit India movement and went underground to avoid being arrested. Her property was confiscated by the government and then sold. Also, Government officials announced Rs. 5000 as a reward for her capture. In the meantime, she became sick and upon hearing this, Gandhiji recommended she surrender. But, Aruna Asaf Ali surrendered herself after she was able to have her warrants lifted on the 26th of January, 1946.

When the country gained independence, Aruna Asaf Ali, at the time of independence was an active participant in the Congress Socialist Party who was previously an integral part of the Congress framework. In 1948, however, the socialists, which included Aruna made the Socialist Party of their own. In 1955, the group joined with the Communist Party of India, and Aruna was elected to its Central Committee and Vice President of the All India Trade Union Congress. In 1958, she left to join the Communist Party of India and was elected as the first Delhi Mayor. she joined the Congress group in 1964, but stopped playing actively in politics. She was recognized with the Lenin Prize for peace in 1975 as well as in 1991, the Jawahar Lal Nehru Award for International Understanding in 1991. Aruna Asaf Ali died on died July 29, 1996. She was awarded India’s top civilian honor known as the Bharat Ratna and honored with a stamp through the Indian Postal Service in 1998.

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