Baji Rout Gopabandhu Das Jayee RajGuru
Madhusudan Das Veer Surendra Sai Malati Choudhary
Maharaja Krushna Ch Gajapati Laxman Nayak Naba krushna Choudhary
Saheed Baji Rout

October 11th is an unforgettable day in the history of Odisha. 73 years ago that Baji Rout, a young ferr boy from Nilakanthpur village of Dhenkanal was killed by the British soldiers. The death that shook the nation and added fuel to the ongoing freedom struggle made Baji Rout the youngest Martyr of freedom struggle in India. It was around 8 pm on October 10th in 1938 when British police arbitrarily arrested some people of Bhuban village and took them to the Bhuban Police station .

Protesting against this injustice, leaders of the Prajamandal gheraoed the police station, demanding immediate release of the arrested people. The British police instead opened fire at the agitators that killed two people. However after this incident the British police lost its heart and tried to flee the place. The opted to go to Dhenkanal via Nilkanathpur Ghat it was the shortest route to Dhenkanal.

On the wee hours of October 11th, they reached Nilkanthpur Ghat when it was raining. The thirteen year old Baji Rout was on guard of a country boat at that time. He was ordered by the troop to ferry them across the river Brahamani immediately. Baji who had had already heard details of the brutality of the troop understood that had resorted to villagers and had understood if the British troops were to be obstructed, then they needed to be stopped from going across to the other bank. He therefore refused to ferry them across.

The troop threatened to kill him if he did not ferry them across immediately. Baji however rejected their orders again. One of the British soldiers hit Baji Rout head with his gun butt that fractured his skull severely. He collapsed, but he rose again gathering whatever little strength and courage was left with him, and raising his voice to the highest pitch beyond even his strength, warned the British troops not to ferry them till alive. A soldier pierced his bayonet into the soft skull of the brave boy even as another started firing ruthlessly.

While one of the bullets hit Baji and he lay dead, his other friends Laxman Malik, Fagu Sahoo, Hrushi Pradhan and Nata Malik were also killed. The incident shook the entire nation. People from within and outside the state lauded the supreme sacrifice of the barve martyr. The funeral procession of Sahid Baji Rout started from his native village of Nilakanthpur to Khan Nagar in Cuttack. It’s a shame that 73 years on the youngest martyr of Indiahas not received due recognition from the Government of India. Though he is mentioned in the who’s who of Indian Martyrs being published by the government ofIndia, this young martyr definitely deserves more.

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