Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday inaugurated the 'Chauri Chaura' centenary celebrations at Chauri Chaura in Uttar Pradesh via video conferencing.

The day marks the beginning of the 100th year of the 'Chauri Chaura' incident, a landmark event in the country's fight for Independence.

Narendra Modi said that the Chauri Chaura incident was not a single incident of setting fire to a Police Station, but it was the collective manifestation of the angst against the British rule.

He added, “martyrs of Chauri Chaura may not have been given the desired place in history, but their sacrifice is immortal.”

Modi also released a postage stamp to mark the beginning of the centenary celebrations.

A group of freedom fighters participating in the non-cooperation movement launched by Mahatma Gandhi in 1922 were fired upon by police, leading to the death of many of them. In retaliation, protestors attacked and set fire to the Chauri Chaura police station, killing many of its occupants.

Gandhi had called off the movement due to the violence. The killing of the Chauri Chaura policemen had resulted in the arrest of hundreds of protesters with 228 of them being put on trial, six of them dying during it and 172 ordered to be hanged to death with the remaining sentenced to long-term imprisonments after a hasty eight-month trial.

Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, Yogi Adityanath was also present on the occasion. The centenary celebrations and various events planned by the State government began in all 75 districts of the state.

The Uttar Pradesh government has planned to develop the 'Chauri Chaura Shaheed Memorial' in Gorakhpur as a heritage tourist spot ahead as the state government decides to hold year-long celebrations to mark 100 years of the 'Chauri Chaura' incident.

Various programs will be held at memorials of our great freedom fighters. Essay writing, debates and other competitions will be held across the state. Various government departments will use the logo of the Chauri Chaura Centenary for all correspondences. In a novel initiative, students of government and govt-aided schools of Gorakhpur Division will be taken on a tour of the Chauri Chaura martyrium and other memorial sites.

The State Government has also launched a dedicated website to sensitize the young generation about the sacrifices of our great freedom fighters. The Chief Minister has ordered the inclusion of the historical event in the State Board curriculum.
(With inputs from agency)