The Unknown and the Unsung “Alluri Sitarama Raju”- UPSC Current Affairs

The Unknown and the Unsung “Alluri Sitarama Raju”

It’s time to upgrade your UPSC CSE preparation with our daily dose of Current Affairs. In today’s edition, we will talk about The Unknown and the Unsung “Alluri Sitarama Raju”.

Let’s dive in.

Context

To celebrate the unknown and the unsung under the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav program, Prime Minister Modi launched the year-long celebrations on the 125th birth anniversary of Alluri Sitarama Raju, on 4 July 2022.

In case you missed our yesterday’s edition of Current Affairs, you can read it here.

About Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav

  • It is an initiative by the Government of India, to commemorate 75 years of Independence. 
  • It was launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi from Sabarmati Ashram.
  • Among various other things, the program provides an opportunity to celebrate the unsung, the unknown, and the underappreciated.
  • It provides government at every level to come up with civil society, NGOs, spiritual organizations, and passionate individuals, thus the unique participation opportunity and scope make it one of the world’s largest programs of this nature. 
  • The Mahotsav commenced on 12th March 2021 and extended for one additional year till August 15, 2023.
  • Themes: Freedom struggle, [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], etc.

About the Legend Alluri Sitaram Raju (1897-1924)

  • Alluri Sitaram was a freedom fighter and an Indian revolutionary from Andhra Pradesh.
  • His heroic deeds gave him the name “Manyam Veerudu” (Hero of the Jungle) by local villagers.
  • He didn’t belong to the tribes, but still understood the sufferings of tribal people caused by the British colonial administration.
  • He educated, trained, and awakened the Adivasis for their rights on forest produce and to fight against the oppressive Madras Forest Act, 1882.
  • He waged wars against the British administration in response to the 1882 Madras Forest Act.
  • Rama Raju was caught and martyred on May 7, 1924.

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Manyam Rebel (August 1922 – May 1924)

  • The revolt was against police, forest, and revenue officials, in ‘Manyam’ (forest area), thus called Manyam rebel.
  • It is also known as the Rampa rebellion.
  • The Rampa rebellion coincided with Mahatma Gandhi’s Non-Cooperation Movement
  • Reasons: 
    • Britishers prohibited tribals from entering forests and collecting forest produce, under the Madras Forest Act, 1882.  
    • The new laws and systems threatened their way of life itself.
    • There were embargoes on collecting minor forest produce and bans on tribal agriculture practices. 
    • Tribals were pressured to work as forced labor. 
    • They were exploited by moneylenders, police, muttadars, and village headmen commissioned by the colonial government to extract rent. 

The Manyam Rebellion 

The rebellion started under the leadership of Alluri Sitarama Raju.  

Rebels attacked three police stations of Chintapalli, Krishnadevipeta, and Rajavommangi in the forests of the Godavari Agency in the Madras Presidency.

They looted 26 police carbine rifles and 2,500 rounds of ammunition.

The armed revolution ultimately ended by capturing & killing Alluri Sitaram Raju in May 2024.

Recognitions

In 1986, the Indian Postal Department issued a stamp in honor of Alluri Sitarama Raju and his contribution to India’s struggle for Independence. 

Raju has long been a folk hero in the region, and the 1974 Telugu film Alluri Seetharama Raju, featuring actor Krishna, became very popular.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled a 30-foot-tall bronze statue of Alluri Sitarama Raju at Bhimavaram in Andhra Pradesh as the year-long celebrations of the freedom fighter’s 125th birth anniversary. 

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