Jayanand Bharati was the freedom fighter of India and the forerunner of social consciousness. He started the ‘Dola-Palanki Movement’ and played an important role in propagating the ideas of Arya Samaj in Garhwal.
Jayanand Bharti was born on 17 October 1881 in the family of craftsmen of Arkandai village of Pauri district. While wandering in search of employment, he got acquainted with people of Muslim and Christian religion. He was given many temptations for conversion by Muslims and Christians, but he rejected the temptations and said clearly – “I cannot accept any other religion except Hinduism. In front of this unshakable belief of mine, even the greatest honor and splendor of the world is insignificant.
Jayanand Bharti was deeply saddened by the superstitions and evils prevailing in the society. With the desire to solve these problems and study the Vedas, he met Swami Shraddhanand, the founder of Gurukul-Kangri. While propagating the Arya Samaj, he re-incorporated many craftsmen who had left their religion and adopted Christianity by purification.
In another episode of social consciousness, the credit of ‘Dola-Palanki Movement’ goes to Jayanand Bharti. This was the movement in which the bride and groom of the craftsmen were not allowed to sit in the ‘Dola-Palanki’. To solve this movement that lasted for almost 20 years, he filed a case in the Allahabad High Court, which was decided in favor of the craftsmen.
The contribution of Jayanand Bharti in the freedom struggle cannot be forgotten. On 28 August 1930, he inspired the students for the freedom movement by hoisting the tricolor flag on the building of the Government School, Jaiharikhal and giving a speech against the British rule. On 30 August 1930, he was given rigorous imprisonment for 3 months by the Lansdowne Court. In violation of Section 144, when he held a public meeting in Dugadda against the British rule, he was sentenced to six months’ rigorous imprisonment.
‘Historic Pauri Scandal’
Before the second round of the Civil Disobedience Movement, big leaders of the Congress had been arrested. There was extraordinary silence among the people of Pauri due to the arrest of leaders and activists. These days, the arrival of Lat Malcolm of the United Provinces was fixed at Pauri. Pauri’s administration wanted to show Lott Malcolm that the Congress was over in this entire region. For this the administration took the help of ‘Aman Sabha’, friendly letters and friendly press.
With the help of the administration, ‘Aman Sabha’ formed in Lansdowne was established in November 1930, whose objective was to save the Cantonment from the nationalist movement by raising the opposition of Congress. Rai Saheb, Rai Bahadur, many lawyers, pensioners, contractors, wholesalers were involved in the peace meeting.
When Jayanand Bharti, who was released from jail, came to know about this, he decided that he would unfurl the tricolor in the court of Lt Malcolm. On 6 September 1932, Latt was about to hold Malcolm’s court at Pauri. Jayanand Bharati spoke to Sakaland Bharati for the purpose of hoisting the tricolor in the court of Lot Malcolm. Jayanand Bharti first reached Dugadda and then disguised reached Pauri on 5 September 1932 and stayed at night at the house of Kotwal Singh Negi lawyer.
He had two friends with him, who gave him two more pieces of the tricolor. Jayanand Bharati had kept the third piece of the tricolor with him. After reaching Pauri, the tricolor was stitched at the house of Kotwal Singh Negi lawyer.
On 6th September, Jayanand Bharti disguised himself and sat in front of the stage in the meeting. Jayanand Bharti had hidden the tricolor in the sleeve of his kurta. His companions sitting in the meeting started moving the stick of the flag. Meanwhile, Latt Malcolm’s felicitation letter had been read and in the meantime the stick of the flag had reached Jayanand Bharati.
Here Lat Malcolm was to stand up to speak in response to the welcome, while Jayanand Bharati was to hoist the tricolor on the stick. Late Malcolm was about to speak when Jayanand Bharti started moving towards the stage waving the tricolor and started shouting slogans ‘Go Back Malcolm Haley’ ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ ‘Aman Sabha Murdabad’ Congress Zindabad’.
One leg of Jayanand Bharti was on the stage, the other was down when the police and other officers caught him. Jayanand Bharti kept getting beaten up and the tricolor was snatched from his hand and torn, but he did not stop raising slogans. The local governor put a handkerchief in his mouth, but even then he kept on shouting slogans. Meanwhile, Malcolm Haley had fled towards the Dak Bungalow under police guard.
Jayanand Bharti was immediately taken to Pauri Jail wearing handcuffs. The public followed him. The people returned to their homes only on the request of Jayanand Bharti. After this arrest, Bharti was released from jail on 28 September 1933. This incident is famous by the name of ‘Historic Pauri Kand’, which is also mentioned in the gazette of the headquarters of the district.
Jayanand Bharati, who was suffering from serious illness in the last days, breathed his last on 9 September 1952 at the age of 71 in his village Arkandai.