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HindustanTimes Fri,24 Oct 2014

Baba Bilga to be remembered on his 107th birth anniversary

Neha Arora, Hindustan Times  JALANDHAR, March 31, 2014
First Published: 23:46 IST(31/3/2014) | Last Updated: 23:48 IST(31/3/2014)

The family of freedom fighter Baba Bhagat Singh Bilga, who played an active role in Ghadar movement, will organise a function at Bilga village, near here, on the occasion of his 107th birth anniversary on April 2.

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Baba Bilga, the lone surviving Ghadarite revolutionary of India, breathed his last on May 22, 2009 at his son's house in England. He was born on April 2, 1907, six months prior to the birth of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, in the village Bilga of Jalandhar district.

Kulbir Singh Sanghera, son of Baba Bilga, said that a seminar would be organised in the memory of the Baba on the theme 'Women's role in the society' as he worked a lot for the uplift of women in the country.

Recalling his father's deeds, Sanghera said, "Baba ji was very keen on helping women and securing their rights throughout life".

"In 1939, my father opened the first school for girls in native village Bilga for students up to Class 5 so that girls get basic education. After that he again opened a school till Class 8", he said adding that Baba Bilga was always dedicated towards getting women's rights. 

Sanghera further said Dr Jasvir Gill, who has done Ph D on the Ghadar movement, would address a gathering of women in the village, Raghbir Kaur, general secretary, Desh Bhagat Yaadgar Hall, Jalandhar, would also speak on the topic. All the Desh Bhagat Yaadgar committee members would also be part of the function.

 On the occasion, two portraits of freedom fighters would be added to the museum,  which has been built in a portion of the ancestral house of Baba Bilga, housing pictures of Ghadarites and some books written by him.

"Portraits of freedom fighters, including Baldev Mann and Jaimal Singh Padda, who were shot dead by Khalistanis would be added to the museum taking the number of portraits of freedom fighters to 90 at the museum", he added.

For the first time, great grand-daughters of Baba Bilga would participate in the celebration of his birth anniversary.

Amanbir Singh Sanghera, elder grandson of Baba Bilga, said, "My daughters have come up for the birth anniversary celebration of their great grandfather for the first time. They were quite attached with their great grandfather".

Baba Bilga had also served as the president of the Desh Bhagat Yaadgar Committee, Jalandhar. He started holding 'Ghadari Babeyan Da Mela' every year on November 1, to propagate the ideas of the Ghadarite and other revolutionaries.

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