Shaheed Diwas: Check Martyrs' Day Histories and Significance

By : Neha Dhyani

Updated : Jan 11, 2022, 12:39

In India, Shaheed Diwas or Martyrs' Day is celebrated on seven different dates. The dates are 23rd March, 30th January, 19th May, 21st October, 17th November, 19th November, and 24th November. Shaheed Diwas is celebrated on these dates to honour notably gallant and brave Indian men and women who lost their lives while saving our country from external enemies.

Shaheed Diwas Celebrated on Seven Days

Shaheed Diwas or Martyrs' Day is celebrated on seven different dates as follows:

23rd March- Bhagat Singh

23rd March will remain forever etched in our memory since, on this day in 1931, three brave leaders, Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru, and Sukhdev Thapar, were hanged by the Britishers. 23rd March is celebrated as Shaheed Diwas in Hindi to commemorate the contributions of Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru, and Sukhdev Thapar for India's independence.

The three brave leaders were hanged till death in Lahore for assassinating John Saunders in 1928 when they mistook him for James Scott, a British Police Superintendent. They took this step as an act of revenge against James Scott for ordering a lathi charge that caused Lala Lajpat Rai's death. Indians will observe the 91st death anniversary of the three brave freedom fighters on 23rd March 2022.

30th January- Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

30th January is observed as Shaheed Diwas for remembering and ruing the assassination of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the father of the nation. On this day in 1948, M.K.Gandhi was assassinated by Nathuram Godse. Mr Gandhi was assassinated when he was offering his evening prayers at Gandhi Smriti in Birla House.

Every year on 30th January, India's President, Vice President, Prime Minister, Defence Minister, and the Service Chiefs of Army, Air Force, and Navy lay wreaths on Mr Gandhi's samadhi at Delhi's Raj Ghat. It is followed by a two-minutes countrywide silence in the memory of Indian martyrs. The 30th January Shaheed diwas date is as special for Indians as the 23rd March Shaheed Diwas.

19th May- Bengali people were shot and killed by paramilitary forces

Shaheed Diwas is also celebrated on 19th May since, on this date, eleven (11) ethnic Bengali people were shot and killed by paramilitary forces. The incident took place after the Assam Pradesh Congress Committee took up a proposal in April 1960 to make Assamese the State's only official language.

Eventually, the bill was passed in October 1960, making Assamese and the State's only official language. This incident gave birth to protests by the ethnic Bengali community at Barak Valley. On 19th May, as the ethnic Bengalis started enforcing a complete hartal, the paramilitary forces opened fire, killing 11 people. This is why 19th May is declared as Bhasa Shaheed Diwas.

21st October- CRPF men who lost their lives to a Chinese ambush in 1959 in Ladakh

The National Police Commemoration Day or Shaheed Diwas is celebrated on 21st October to pay homage to the brave CRPF men who lost their lives to a Chinese ambush in 1959 in Ladakh. The incident took place when a CRPF team was patrolling the hot spring area in Ladakh and was ambushed by a Chinese army team.

The Chinese army launched grenades and followed a fire attack that led to ten deaths, and seven were captured as prisoners. This day is also commemorated to honour the 33,000 police personnel who have lost their lives on duty since 1961.

17th November- Lala Lajpat Rai

The Odisha government celebrates 17th November as Shaheed Diwas every year to honour the death of the famous freedom fighter Lala Lajpat Rai. He is also referred to as the Lion of Punjab for his exemplary role in leading the freedom struggle against the British.

19th November- Rani Lakshmi Bai

Shaheed Diwas is also celebrated on 19th November in Jhansi to commemorate the birth anniversary of Rani Lakshmi Bai. Rani Lakshmi Bai, a.k.a. Jhansi ki Rani, played an instrumental role in leading the Indian Rebellion of 1857.

24th November- Guru Tegh Bahadur

24th November is celebrated as Shaheed Diwas to remember and honour the ninth Sikh guru, Guru Tegh Bahadur, a.k.a. Hind ki Chadar. He sacrificed his life for upholding the rights of the people. He was beheaded by Mughal emperor Aurangzeb in 1675.

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FAQs about Shaheed Diwas

  • When is Shaheed Diwas celebrated in India?

Shaheed Diwas is celebrated on 23rd March, 30th January, 19th May, 21st October, 17th November, 19th November, and 24th November in India.

  • What is Bhagat Singh Shaheed Diwas?

23 March shaheed diwas is celebrated an also as 23 march shaheed diwas in Hindi to commemorate the contributions of Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru, and Sukhdev Thapar for India's independence.

  • Why is 30th January celebrated as Shaheed Diwas in India?

30th January is observed as Shaheed  Diwas for remembering and ruing the assassination of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, the father of the nation.

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Neha DhyaniNeha DhyaniMember since Jul 2017
An IT engineer turned Writer, Neha is a versatile content creator at ‘Gradeup’, who covers news and top stories of the education sector. She has been in the industry since 2015. She is passionate about her work, however, when she isn’t crafting content, she’s probably reading, playing badminton, watching YouTube or just lazing around. Her email address is neha.dhyani@gradeup.co.