Alluri Sitarama Raju

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    • Recently Hon PM of India has launched year-long celebrations to remember contributions of Alluri Sitarama Raju.
      • The fourth of July marks his 125th birth anniversary.

    Alluri Sitarama Raju:

    • Early life:
      • He was born in present day Andhra Pradesh on 4th July 1897 to Alluri Venkata Rama Raju and Suryanarayanamma.
      • He was a sanyasi and a strong believer in justice who raised his voice and waged many a battle against unlawful British policies.
      • Alluri, a born rebel, became a sanyasi at the age of 18.
    • Contribution to freedom struggle and welfare of Adivasis
      • He roamed the hills and forests of the Agency area as a bala sanyasi and mingled with the local tribal community. 
        • The tribals, in turn, regarded him as a mystic who would rescue them from their humiliating existence at the hands of the British authorities.
      • Initially, Sitarama Raju, under the influence of Gandhiji’s Non-cooperation movement, inspired the tribals to seek justice in the local panchayat courts and boycott the colonial courts.
        •  However, these steps did not alleviate their suffering and eventually, he used this movement to spread awareness about the need for change. 
      • Rampa Rebellion:
    • The British government passed the Madras Forest Act in 1882. 
    • It banned the villagers from practising their traditional agricultural system of shifting cultivation known as Podu cultivation, forcing them to raise particular types of crops. 
    • It had also laid severe curbs on their movement in the forest area.
    • Alluri Seetarama initiated the famous “Rampa Rebellion” or Manyam Rebellion in 1922-1924 against the Forest Act in Visakhapatnam-Godavari agency area of the then Madras Presidency
    • He galvanised the tribals to fight against the injustices of the British.
      • He also utilised sporting traditional weaponry like bow-and-arrow and spears, and employing tactics like using whistles and beating drums to exchange messages amongst themselves. 
    • A guerrilla warrior:
      • His deep understanding of the forest terrain and skillful use of tribal war tactics made him a highly successful guerrilla warrior who struck terror in the hearts of the British.
        • This gave him the title of “Manyam Veerudu” or the “Hero of Jungle”
    • Death:
      • After putting up a massive effort for nearly two years, the British managed to capture Alluri in the forests of Chintapalli.
        • He was then tied to a tree and executed by shooting on 7 May 1924 in the village of Koyyuru.
      • The fierce revolutionary laid down his life for the freedom of the motherland at the young age of 27 years.
    • Recognition post-independence:
      • The Independent Indian Government released a postal stamp in his honour at the village of Mogallu, considered by many to be his birthplace.
      • In 2022, the Government of Andhra Pradesh carved out a new district named after Alluri from the erstwhile Visakhapatnam district.
      • Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled a 30-feet tall bronze statue of revolutionary fighter Alluri Sitarama Raju as part of his 125th birth anniversary celebrations at Pedda Amiram village near Bhimavaram in West Godavari district on Monday.
      • Every year, the Government of Andhra Pradesh commemorates his birth date, the 4th of July, as a state festival. 

    Source:TH