Subhadra Kumari Chauhan (16 August 1904) – 15 February 1948) was an Indian poet. One of her most popular poems is “Jhansi ki Rani” (about the courageous Queen of Jhansi).
|Born||16 August 1904
Prayagraj, United Provinces of Agra and Oudh, British India
|Died||15 February 1948 (aged 43)
Seoni, Central Provinces and Berar, India
|Spouse||Thakur Lakshman Singh Chauhan|
Subhadra Chauhan was born in Nihalpur village in Prayagraj District, Uttar Pradesh. She initially studied in the Crosthwaite Girls’ School in Allahabad where she was a senior and friends with Mahadevi Verma and passed the middle-school examination in 1919.
After her marriage with Thakur Lakshman Singh Chauhan of Khandwa in the same year, she moved to Jubbulpore (now Jabalpur), Central Provinces.
She was a member of the legislative assembly of the state (erstwhile Central Provinces). She died in 1948 in a car accident near Seoni, Madhya Pradesh, on her way back to Jabalpur from Nagpur, the then capital of Central Provinces, where she had gone to attend the assembly session.
Chauhan authored a number of popular works in Hindi poetry. Her most famous composition is Jhansi Ki Rani, an emotionally charged poem describing the life of Rani Lakshmi Bai. The poem is one of the most recited and sung poems in Hindi literature
A couplet repeated at the end of each stanza reads thus:
बुंदेले हरबोलों के मुँह हमने सुनी कहानी थी,
खूब लड़ी मर्दानी वह तो झाँसी वाली रानी थी।।
This and her other poems, Jallianwala Bagh mein Vasant, Veeron Ka Kaisa Ho Basant, Rakhi Ki Chunauti, and Vida, openly talk about the freedom movement. They are said to have inspired great numbers of Indian youth to participate in the Indian Freedom Movement.
The ICGS Subhadra Kumari Chauhan, an Indian Coast Guard ship, was named for the poet. The government of Madhya Pradesh placed a statue of Subhadra Kumari Chauhan before the Municipal Corporation office of Jabalpur.
On August 6, 1976, India Posts released a postage stamp to commemorate her.
On 16 August 2021, search engine Google commemorated Subhadra Kumari with a Doodle on her 117th birth anniversary. Google commented: “Chauhan’s poetry remains a staple in many Indian classrooms as a symbol of historical progress, encouraging future generations to stand up against social injustice and celebrate the words that shaped a nation’s history”
Collections of poems
- Mukul (1930)
- Yeh Kadamb Ka Ped
- These anthologies consist of some well-known poems like “Jhansi ki Raani”, “Veeron Ka Kaisa Ho Basant” and “Yeh Kadamb Ka Ped”.
- “Seedhe-Saade Chitra” (1946)
- “Mera naya Bachpan” (1946)
- “Bikhare Moti” (1932)
- “Jhansi ki Rani”
- Hingvala (or Hingwala)
“In 1923, Ms. Chauhan’s unyielding activism led her to become the first woman satyagrahi, a member of the Indian collective of nonviolent anti-colonialists, to be arrested in the struggle for national liberation”, Google wrote in its statement.
Subhadra Kumari Chouhan, the Indian poet who wrote the famous poem Jhansi ki Rani, on her 117th birth anniversary with a doodle.
The doodle shows Kumari sitting in a saree with a pen and paper. Rani Lakshmi Bai can be seen riding a horse in the background and a few other people marching in the country’s freedom struggle are also visible.
Today, Chauhan’s poetry remains a staple in many Indian classrooms as a symbol of historical progress, encouraging future generations to stand up against social injustice and celebrate the words that shaped a nation’s history.