1870 – Great freedom fighters, leader of the Swaraj Party ‘Deshbandhu’ Chittaranjan Das was born. He believed in achieving ‘Swaraj’ or independence through non-violent means and propagated communal harmony, Hindu-Muslim unity and cooperation.
After differences cropped up in the Indian National Congress, he along with prominent leaders like Motilal Nehru and Huseyn Shaheed Suhrawady formed the ‘Swaraj’ Party. He was the first mayor of the Calcutta Corporation.
1927 – The Last King of the Kingdom of Kashi H.H.Maharaja Vibhuti Narayan Singh was born.
1951 – State owned railway services of Baroda, Bombay and Central India Railway (BB&CI), Rajputana, Saurashtra and Jaipur were merged to create the Western Railway division.
1988 – Captain of the triumphant under-19 cricket team in 2008, ICC Cricketer of the Year 2012- swashbuckling middle order batsman Virat Kohli was born.
Kohli who has emerged as an ODI specialist is known for his ability to chase targets down. He made his international debut in an ODI against Sri Lanka in 2008 while he earned his test cap in 2011 against the West Indies.
2011 – Eminent singer, lyricist, poet, musician and filmmaker Bhupen Hazarika passed away. He was often seen as the voice of Assam and Northeast India. He sang in many languages but mostly in Assamese, Hindi and Bengali. His compositions were generally based on romance, communal harmony, justice etc. He also donned the director’s hat quite a few times and churned out classics like ‘Shakuntala Sur'(1961), ‘Lati-Ghati'(1966), ‘For Whom the Sun Shines'(1974) and his last venture ‘Siraj'(1988). In 1961, ‘Shakuntala Sur’ brought him appreciation in the form of National Film Award for Best Feature Film in Assamese. In 1975, he received another National Film Award, this time for Best Music Direction. In 1987, he was honoured with the ‘Sangeet Natak Akademi Award’ and was given the ‘Sangeet Natak Akademi Fellowship’ in 2008. The Government of India conferred on him the Dadasaheb Phalke Award in 1992, the Padma Shri in 1997, the Padma Bhushan in 2001 and the Padma Vibhushan (posthumously) in 2011.