Veer Savarkar's Wife, Yamunabai: Modern 'Sita', 2 Kids Died, Fight Against A Mob Post Gandhi's Death

Randeep Hooda's film, 'Swatantrya Veer Savarkar' has brought Vinayak Damodar Savarkar's life into the spotlight. Thus, today, we will discuss Veer Savarkar's backbone, his wife, Yamunabai Savarkar.


By Rishabh Naudiyal Last Updated:


Veer Savarkar's Wife, Yamunabai: Modern 'Sita', 2 Kids Died, Fight Against A Mob Post Gandhi's Death

Vinayak Damodar Savarkar is one of the most debatable names in India's freedom struggle. Even after so many decades, there's a huge debate about Veer Savarkar's life and his fight against Britishers for India's independence. For years, people have claimed without solid evidence that Veer Savarkar inspired Indian revolutionaries like Bhagat Singh and Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.

Randeep Hooda's film, Swatantrya Veer Savarkar, ignites debate around Veer Savarkar's life all over again

All these ifs and buts about Veer Savarkar's influence and work as an activist came into the spotlight after Bollywood actor, Randeep Hooda announced his debut as a director with the biographical drama titled Swatantrya Veer Savarkar. The film's teaser has once again claimed that Veer Savarkar inspired Bhagat Singh, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Khudiram Bose, and the armed revolution.

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What's interesting is the fact that Randeep Hooda portrayed the character of 'Vinayak Damodar Savarkar' in the film which is directed by him. Randeep Hooda joined hands with Mahesh Manjrekar and Utkarsh Naithani for the film's story. The cast of Swatantrya Veer Savarkar includes Ankita Lokhande, Amit Sial and a series of foreign actors like Mark Bennington, Richard Bhakti Klein, Ed Robinson, Russell Geoffrey Banks, and more.

Veer Savarkar formed 'Mitra Mela' at the age of 16 and contributed to India's freedom struggle movement

Vinayak Damodar Savarkar was born on May 28, 1883 in Maharashtra’s Nashik region. Right from an early age, he was concerned about India's freedom struggle. According to Lok Sabha Secretariat Documents in 2019 titled, Swatantryaveer Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Veer Savarkar started penning poems for well-known newspapers at the age of 10.

While growing up, he saw people around him suffering and losing their lives due to the miseries of famine and plague under British rule. It was then he took the oath to sacrifice his life to make India free. As a result, at the age of 16, he formed a group named Mitra Mela (later changed to Abhinava Bharat), whose sole aim was to fight for India's complete political independence. Talking about his education details, Veer Savarkar completed his Bachelor's degree at Pune's Fergusson College and studied at Gray's Inn Law College, London.

Veer Savarkar's famous escape at Marseilles, which led to his imprisonment in the Andamans

When Vinayak Damodar Savarkar was studying in London, he started the Free India Society and realised the importance of getting international support for India's freedom struggle. Due to his revolutionary activities, he was arrested for the first time in March 1910. While he was getting transported to India from London, Veer Savarkar escaped the ship at Marseilles, grabbing the attention of the international press.

Veer Savarkar died due to starvation after he decided to perform self-sacrifice

However, Veer Savarkar was soon caught by British guards and was imprisoned in the Andamans in 1911. After exiting prison in 1924, Veer Savarkar started his fight against various topics. From penning a series of inspirational books, working as the President of Hindu Mahasabha, introducing blank verse metre Vainayak into Marathi poetry and working towards purifying the Marathi language, Veer Savarkar dedicated his life to society.

The revolutionary passed away on February 26, 1966, due to starvation. As per News 18, Veer Savarkar self-sacrificed himself by performing a fast at 82. He stopped taking medicines and food as he was convinced that he had served his life's purpose and that there was no point in waiting for death with a miserable body that could not come for society's betterment.

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Meet Veer Savarkar's wife, Yamunabai Savarkar, who was referred to as a modern-day 'Sita'

Even after so many years of his demise, Veer Savarkar still inspires so many people. Still, unfortunately, his wife, Yamunabai Savarkar, never got the same recognition despite sacrificing her entire life for him. For the unversed, Yamunabai was born into a rich and influential family. Her father, Ramchandra Trimbak was the Dewan of the principality of Jawahar. Due to her friendship with Veer Savarkar's sister-in-law, she met him and fell in love with him after knowing his love for the nation.

In one of his editorial pieces, renowned author, Ratnakar Sadasyula referred to Yamunabai Savarkar as a 'modern day Sita'. Explaining the reason behind such a compliment, Ratnakar explained that Yamunabai was born in the lap of luxury. Even then, she decided to sacrifice a comfortable life and support her husband, Veer Savarkar, in his mission to fight for India's freedom. The couple got married in February 1901, and as it was expected, Yamunabai faced a lot of problems but never surrendered.

Veer Savarkar and his wife, Yamunabai Savarkar's two children died months after their birth

From living a simple life and staying away from her husband for almost a decade, Yamunabai was involved in a series of movements that contributed heavily to India's struggle for freedom. She was a stellar force in Savarkar's life, and it can be understood by the fact that despite the death of her two children, Prabhakar and Shalini, who passed away due to smallpox and infancy soon after birth, Yamunabai continued fighting for India's freedom.

Yamunabai Savarkar never let the pain of her personal life come between her and Veer Savarkar's mission for India's freedom. However, in the later years, Yamunabai welcomed two sons, Prabhat and Vishwas, who were with her till the end. Due to her active participation in freedom movements, she got the title of 'Mai' by fellow revolutionaries courtesy of her kind and helping nature.

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Veer Savarkar's wife, Yamunabai Savarkar fought against a mob who attacked their residence in Dadar

According to Indian historian, Vikram Sampath's book, Savarkar: A Contested Legacy, an angry crowd of 500 to 1,000 people reached outside Vinayak Damodar Savarkar's residence in Dadar after Mahatma Gandhi's assassination on January 30, 1948. As per the book, Veer Savarkar's younger brother, Dr. Narayan Damodar Savarkar suffered a serious head injury after the crowd hit him with stones and bricks. During the horrific attack, Veer Savarkar's wife, Yamunabai and their son, Vishwas were also there, and according to Ratnakar Sadasyula, she fought against the mob with a stick.

Veer Savarkar didn't attend the cremation of his wife, Yamunabai Savarkar and passed away 3 years after her death

According to Ratnakar Sadasyula, Yamunabai Savarkar passed away on November 8, 1963, after lymphoma stuck her in 1956. When Veer Savarkar was informed of his wife's death, he was heartbroken about losing his biggest support but controlled his emotions. He didn't even attend Yamunabai's cremation as, according to him, he had already bid farewell to her. As per Ratnakar, on his wife's death, Veer Savarkar said:

"Mai (Yamunabai Savarkar) has passed, her life has been fulfilled. I have already bid farewell to Mai. I do not feel up to it to go there (crematorium)."

What are your thoughts on Vinayak Damodar Savarkar's wife, Yamunabai Savarkar, who gave her all in India's fight for freedom? Does she deserve more recognition? Let us know.

Also Read: When Mahatma Gandhi Got Angry With His Wife, Kasturba Gandhi For Just 4 Rupees

Sources: Veer Savarkar-The Woman in his life and Swatantryaveer Vinayak Damodar Savarkar
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