Thursday, June 22, 2023

Aasim Bihari: Freedom fighter who led movements, battled for downtrodden all his life

Shams Ur Rehman Alavi

Ali Husain Aasim Bihari who was a freedom fighter, big leader, organised workers in Bihar & Bengal, brought out newspapers, formed multiple organisations.

He, led Momin Ansari community, and all his life fought for workers' rights. Suffered a lot in process and his family also lived in challenging circumstances.

Hailing from Bihar Sharif, Nalanda, he had to shift to Kolkata to earn a living and it was here that he began involved in freedom movement and started an unprecedented political and social journey despite financial constraints.

Aasim Bihari left a huge legacy but led a tough life. His family bore consequences of his immense passion for awakening the masses, at the cost of his own health and finances. He opposed partition of India and worked for uplift of downtrodden. He passed away in independent India and was buried in Allahabad.

I don't think it is easy to write about his missionary zeal and his sacrifices without getting tears in eyes. He faced personal tragedies, the death of his brother, the lack of money that caused hardships to his daughter, the suffering of his wife and entire family. 

He was ailing and couldn't be treated. He had declined the post of minister, also refused to take a princely sum, luring offer from a major political party, and his integrity for the cause was unquestionable.

In a life of constant struggle. Aasim Bihari formed organisations, led agitations, ran campaign to release nationalist leaders from jails after Jallianwalabagh massacre by sending letters from people of all parts of country to Queen & Viceroy. Brought out journals, weavers were organised amd turned into a political force.

Born in 1889 [1890*], he passed away in 1953. From Jamiatul Momineen, his lifelong fight for rights, awareness, awakening and education among masses, continued. CM recently released book on him and it has been decided to add a chapter on his life in school textbook.

[There is slight variation in references about his year of birth. However, the date of birth is April 15.]