Kanaklata Barua: The fearless freedom fighter who bravely took a bullet while standing up against the British

Born in 1924, Kanaklata Barua had a very short life. She died on September 20, 1942, while fighting for the freedom of the country.

While many sacrificed their lives for the country’s independence, the contribution of Kanaklata Barua will always stand out when we talk about India’s struggle for independence.

Barua was an eminent freedom fighter from Assam. She played a pivotal role in 1942 Quit India Movement by sacrificing her life for the cause of the country.


Initial life

Born on December 22, 1924, Barua showed patriotic tendencies since a very young age. Her grandfather Ghana Kanta Barua was a famous hunter in Assam. Her ancestors were from the Dolakharia Barua kingdom of the erstwhile Ahom state.

Role in freedom struggle

The Indian National Congress in 1942, resolved to “do or die” for the independence of the country. Young people joined the movement including Kanaklata Barua. She became one of the great warriors who pushed for independence.

Also read: Savitribai Phule, the social reformer who founded India’s first girls’ school

Under the leadership of the revolutionary Jyoti Prasad Agarwala, Barua took part in the move to hoist the national flag in Darrang district.

Video Courtesy: YouTube

Death and commemoration

On 20 September 1942, the revolutionaries, led by Barua proceeded towards the police station to unfurl the national flag. They were warned by the police not to proceed further, however, the procession continued marching. The police fired at the procession in which Barua was gravely injured.

Video Courtesy: YouTube

Despite the serious injury, she kept holding the flag until her companion Mukanda Kakati took it from her. Barua later succumbed to her injuries and attained martyrdom.

Also read: How Durgabai Deshmukh caught Mahatma Gandhi’s attention at age 12 by fighting for the devadasis

In 1997, the Fast Patrol Vessel ICGS Kanak Lata Barua of the Indian Coast Guard was named after her.

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