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Dr. Mookerjee’s mother Jogmaya Devi exclaimed, on hearing of her son’s death. “Proudly do I feel that the loss of my son is a loss to Mother India !”

Born on 6th July 1901 in a famous family. His father Sir Asutosh was widely known in Bengal. Graduated from Calcutta University he became a fellow of the Senate in 1923. He enrolled as an advocate in Calcutta High Court in 1924 after his father’s death. Subsequently he left for England in 1926 and became a barrister in 1927. At the age of 33, he became the world’s youngest Vice-Chancellor of the Calcutta University and held the office till 1938. During his tenure, he introduced a number of constructive reforms and was active in Asiatic Society of Calcutta as well as was a member of the Court and the Council of the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore and Chairman of the Inter-University of Board. He was elected as member of the Legislative Council of Bengal as a Congress candidate representing Calcutta University but resigned next year when Congress decided to boycott the legislature. Subsequently, he contested the election as an independent and got elected. He became the opposition leader when Krishak Praja Party – Muslim League coalition was in power 1937-41 and joined the Progressive Coalition Ministry headed by Fazlul Haq as a Finance Minister and within less than an year resigned. He emerged as a spokesman for Hindus and shortly joined Hindu Mahasabha and in 1944, he became the President. Pandit Nehru inducted him in the Interim Central Government as a Minister for Industry and supply. On issue of Delhi pact with Likayat Ali Khan, Mookerjee resigned from the Cabinet on 6th April 1950. After consultation with Shri Golwalkar Guruji of RSS Shri Mookerjee founded Bharatiya Jana Sangh on 21st Oct. 1951 at Delhi and he became the first President of it. In 1952 elections, Bharatiya Jana Sangh won 3 seats in Parliament one of them being that of Shri Mookerjee. He had formed National Democratic Party within the Parliament which consisted 32 members of MPs and 10 of Members of Rajya Sabha which however was not recognised by the speaker as an opposition party. To voice his opposition he turned outside Parliament and on Kashmir he termed the arrangement under Article 370 as Balkanisation of India and three nation theory of Shaikh Abdullah. He opposed the Indian National Congress ‘s decision to grant Kashmir a special status with its own flag and Prime Minister. According to Congress’s decision, no one, including the President of India could enter into Kashmir without the permission of Kashmir’s Prime Minister. In opposition to this decision, he once said “Ek desh mein do Vidhan, do Pradhan aur Do Nishan nahi challenge”(A single country can’t have two constitutions , two prime ministers , and two National Emblems) Bharatiya Jana Sangh along with Hindu Mahasabha and Ram Rajya Parishad launched a massive Satyagraha to get removed the pernicious provisions. Mookerjee went to visit Kashmir in 1953 and was arrested on 11th May while crossing the borders.of kashmir. A veteran politician, he was respected by his friends and foes alike for his knowledge and forthrightness. He outshined all other Ministers in the cabinet except perhaps Pandit Nehru by his erudition and culture.

Mookerjee was arrested on entering Kashmir on 11 May, 1953. Thereafter, he was jailed in a dilapidated house.Mookerjee had suffered from drypleurisy and coronary troubles. He was administered penicillin despite having informed the doctor-in-charge of his allergy to penicillin, and he died on 23 June, 1953. His death in custody raised wide suspicion across the country and demands for an independent enquiry were raised, including earnest requests from his mother, Jogamaya Devi, to Jawaharlal Nehru. Nehru declared that he had inquired from a number of persons who were privy to the facts and, according to him, there was no mystery behind Mookerjee’s death. Jogamaya Devi did not accept Nehru’s reply and requested the setting up of an impartial enquiry. Nehru, however, ignored the letter and no enquiry commission was set up. Mookerjee’s death therefore remains a matter of some controversy. Kudos to the great leader.

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Kartikey Misra

A student of law, co-founder eltrivate, Individualist, Narcissist. Totally believes in Nationalism. Has an interest in politics, history, religion, literature and international relations. Loves to hunt pseudo liberals and pseudo seculars.

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