“Peasantry is the soul of India. India is a country of peasants and agriculture being its most valuable ornament. The more development is made in the agriculture field, more we develop at the national level. The real growth of India could be measured with prosperity and self-sufficiency of peasantry.”-Chaudhary Ranbir Singh [Hooda]
Chaudhary Ranbir Singh [Hooda] was one of those brave sons of Mother India who staying on the forefront of the battle for India’s freedom from the shackle of British imperialism fought with courage under the leadership of Mamatma Gandhi; who after independence worked day and night for rebuilding the nation, for the rural masses, peasantry in particular.
Born on November 26, 1914 in a Jat Kisan family of Sanghi village of Rohtak district [Haryana], Ranbir Singh studied at the Vaishya High School and the Government College of Rohtak and completed his graduation in 1937 from the Ramjas College of Delhi. His father Matu Ram was a progressive and respected farmer of the area and an ardent supporter of education for rural people, which in fact could pave the way for studies of his own son, Ranbir Singh.
Those were the dayswhen Mahatma Gandhi was busy with the nationwide preparations of the final fight for the freedom of India. How then an enthusiastic, nationalist and freedom lover youth like Ranbir Singh could astray from the call of the Mahatma? With a firm determination that “We are born for the nation, our Motherland, India, and it is our foremost duty to liberate it from the alien rule at any cost”, he, not only became a lieutenant of Gandhiji in the region, but also jumped in the battle. Staying in the forefront he participated in the Individual Satyagraha [1940-41] and the Quit India Movement , and for his nationalistic activities he became a tough challenge for the imperialists. For this, he was imprisoned four times and kept in the several jails including the Central Prison of Lahore, Ambala, Firozepur, Hisar, Multan, Rohtak and Sialkot.
For his organizational abilities, understanding of rural India, mass contact and nationalistic approach, he became a leading figure; therefore, he was elected to the Constituent Assembly of India . Along with this, he became a member of the Interim Parliament [1950-2], and was also elected to the First and the Second Lok Sabha [in 1952 and 1957 respectively] from the Rohtak Constituency. Moreover, he was elected to the Punjab Vidhan Sabha in 1962 and soon thereafter was inducted to the Punjab Cabinet as the Minister In-charge for Power and Irrigation, where his role and contribution in the development of the Bhakhra-Nangal Project remained noteworthy. After the formation of Haryana he again as a Minister in the State Cabinet served the masses in the best possible manner.
Chaudhary Ranbir Singh worked for the welfare of the masses. He founded many educational institutions in rural areas with the purpose of imparting education among poor and making the people self-reliant. Among them the name of Subhash School at Kharkhande and schools at Munger Bilibilan and Polangi are worth mention here.
Perhaps it was he who was elected to the seven different houses namely the Constituent Assembly of India, the Central Legislative Assembly, the Interim Parliament, Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha, and Vidhan Sabhas of Punjab and Haryana respectively and thus created a history. He was a solid voice of rural masses, Kisans in particular. It is well evident from all of his speeches in different house and suggestions he made from time-to-time as a member to different committees of Parliament. His exemplary works are still the source of inspiration for the youth of the country.
Chaudhary Ranbir Singh breathed his last on February 1, 2009 at the age of 95. The Post and Telegraph Department of India released a stamp in his memory and tribute on the occasion of his Second Nirvana Day on February 1, 2011.