‘National Education Day’ is celebrated all over the country on the birth anniversary of Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, freedom fighter and independent India’s first education minister. Born on this day, 11 November 1888 in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, Abul Kalam ‘Azad’, commonly remembered as Maulana Azad, was one of the most prominent freedom fighters of India. He not only fought against British colonial rule but also opposed the creation of Pakistan.
Let us know 10 big facts about him.
- He became the first education minister of independent India.
- His birth anniversary is celebrated as National Education Day in India.
- He was awarded the Bharat Ratna posthumously in 1992
- Maulana Azad’s real name was ‘Abul Kalam Ghulam Muhiyuddin’ he later came to be known as Maulana Azad. He adopted ‘Azad’ as his surname.
- He started writing poetry in the Urdu language at a very young age. He also wrote treatises on religion and philosophy.
- Azad became the youngest person to serve as the President of the Indian National Congress in 1923 at the age of 35.
- Azad became the leader of the ‘Khilafat Movement’ (1919–26), during which he came into close contact with Mahatma Gandhi.
- During this period, he became a supporter of Gandhi’s ideas of non-violent civil disobedience and worked to organize the non-cooperation movement in protest against the 1919 Rowlatt Act.
- He gained popularity through his work as a journalist. He published works critical of the British Raj and supported Indian nationalism.
- Azad was also the most prominent Muslim leader who opposed the creation of Pakistan.