Ever heard of ‘Kala Pani ki Saza’? Well, you might have heard or read about it in either your history lesson or in some patriotic movie. But do you actually know what it was? Let’s have a glance at this horrible punishment given to the freedom fighters during the British regime.
Kala Pani Prison or the Cellular Jail situated in Port Blair, the capital of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India, was built in 1906 by the British. It took them ten years to build the Cellular Jail. This jail was used by the British to grant solitary confinement to the independence activists so that they do not cause any hindrance in the way of cruel British Authorities.
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Many renowned freedom fighters like Batukeshwar Dutt, Yogendra Shukla, and Vinayak Savarkar were sent for this ‘Kala Pani Ki Saza’. They were isolated from the Indian mainland so that they could not carry out rebellious activities against the British.
Even before the prison was constructed, Andaman and Nicobar Islands were used as a prison in the supervision of Jailer David Barry and Major James Pattison Walker. The prisoners who were sent to the Islands at that time were used as laborers for the construction of the cellular jail.
The prisoners in the Kala Pani jail were treated worse than animals. They led a miserable life bearing the cruelties of the British and staying away from their family and loved ones. They went through various inhuman tortures and were almost left half dead by the British.
Some of the prisoners started a hunger strike in the early 1930s against the cruel acts of the British officials but nothing made any difference until the intervention of Mahatma Gandhi and Rabindranath Tagore into the matter when Britishers started releasing the prisoners.
Every story related to our independence brings a different level of chills down our spine! Our freedom fighters really went through a lot to gift us this beautiful thing called freedom. We cannot thank them enough for enabling us to take birth and breathe in a free India! Jai Hind!