Freedom Fighters of India – First Freedom Fighter of India, Top Freedom Fighters Names

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

Freedom fighters of India: Freedom fighters are the prime reasons behind the freedom against British rule. Be it Bhagat Sight or Subhash Chandra Bose, they did not care about their lives and sacrificed themselves for the freedom of the motherland. Independence is the result of the violence, conflicts, and movements of various freedom fighters in India and a history of hundreds of rebellions against the rule of East Indian companies.

Mangal Pandey was the first freedom fighter of India, as he was witnessed as a forerunner of the first war for Indian independence, the 1857 revolt against the British. Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. B R Ambedkar, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Jawaharlal Nehru, and Bhagat Singh are some of the top freedom fighters names. This article will provide you with a list of 10 freedom fighters of India, along with their contribution to the struggle for freedom.

Freedom Fighters of India

All those national heroes of India who had contributed to the nation in achieving freedom from the British rule of the East India Company were called the Freedom fighters of India. Many people from different backgrounds came forward and raised their voices against the cruel rule of the Britishers. Some were revolutionaries, while others believed in the power of silence and non-violence and followed the path of peaceful protests from time to time.

Freedom Fighters of India UPSC Notes

The outcome of the tremendous freedom struggle fought by our great Indian freedom fighters, India attained its independence on August 15, 1947. With the help of outstanding freedom warriors, a number of conflicts, movements, battles, and uprisings were fought for India’s independence.

First Freedom Fighter of India

Mangal Pandey was the First Freedom Fighter of India. He was the first one to inspire many Indians by raising the phrase “Maro Firangi Ko”. Mangal Pandey was born on 19th July 1827 and was among the earliest extremists who uplifted soldiers of India to commence the Indian Mutiny and the 1857 Great Rebellion.

As a warrior in the 34th Bengal Native Infantry Battalion of the East India Company’s military, he led the Sepoy revolution that eventually resulted in the 1857 revolt. He was assassinated on 8th April 1857 at Barrackpore in foresight of a Sepoy revolt.

List of Freedom Fighters Names

Several freedom fighters of India lost their lives in the practice of making India free from British rule. It was not only the males who stood against the British and fought for independence, but the female freedom fighters like Rani Lakshmi bai and Begum Hazrat Mahal gave a tough fight and created a wave of terror among Britishers.

The freedom fighters names who fought for the right to liberty and freedom are as follows:

  • Vinayak Damodar Savarkar
  • Vasudev Balwant Phadke
  • Ubaidullah Sindhi
  • Tanguturi Prakasam
  • Subodh Roy
  • Shyamji Krishna Varma
  • Rash Behari Bose
  • Pritilata Waddedar
  • Surya Sen
  • Madan Lal Dhingra
  • Khudiram Bose
  • Prafulla Chaki
  • Chittaranjan Das
  • Subhas Chandra Bose
  • Chandra Shekhar Azad
  • Bhavabhushan Mitra
  • Sucheta Kriplani
  • Alluri Sitarama Raju
  • Kanneganti Hanumanthu
  • Parbati Giri
  • Lakshmi Sahgal
  • Tirupur Kumaran
  • Kanaiyalal Maneklal Munshi
  • Bhikaji Cama
  • Senapati Bapat
  • Basawon Singh (Sinha)
  • Kartar Singh Sarabha
  • Bagha Jatin
  • Annie Besant
  • Jogesh Chandra Chatterjee
  • Roshan Singh
  • Ram Prasad Bismil
  • Sachindra Bakshi
  • Rajendra Lahiri
  • Manmath Nath Gupta
  • Ashfaqulla Khan
  • Asaf Ali
  • Begum Hazrat Mahal
  • Bahadur Shah Zafar
  • Chetram Jatav
  • Bakht Khan
  • Mangal Pandey (India’s first freedom fighter)
  • Rani Laxmi Bai
  • Veerapandiya Kattabomman
  • Rani Gaidinliu
  • Bhagat Singh
  • Pingali Venkayya
  • Dr. Rajendra Prasad
  • Jawaharlal Nehru
  • Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
  • Dr. B R Ambedkar
  • Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Freedom Fighters of India and Their Contributions

Indian Freedom Fighters have an outstanding contribution to making their country free from British rule by uniting the masses against them. The most prominent freedom fighters of India and their contribution to the struggle for freedom are tabulated below.

Freedom Fighters Names Major Contribution
Mahatma Gandhi He is commonly known as the Father of the Nation;

He was a Civil rights activist in South Africa;

He started and led the most important movements like the Quit India movement, Civil disobedience, Champaran, and Kheda Satyagraha;

His ideology was Non-violence

Dr. B R Ambedkar He is referred to as the father of the Constitution;
First Law Minister of India
Dr. Rajendra Prasad First President of the Republic of India;
Leader from Bihar
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Active participation in the Quit India Movement and Civil Disobedience Movement;
An important role in unified India
Jawaharlal Nehru Pre-eminent fighter;
First Prime Minister of India
Bhagat Singh Youngest and most influential revolutionists
Rani Gaidinliu Naga spiritual and political leader
Pingali Venkayya Designer of the flag on which our National Flag is based
Rani Laxmi Bai Indian Rebellion of 1857
Veerapandiya Kattabomman 18th-century Tamil chieftain;
Refused to accept the sovereignty of British East India; Company and raised war against them
Mangal Pandey Indian Rebellion of 1857
Bakht Khan Indian Rebellion of 1857
Chetram Jatav Indian Rebellion of 1857
Bahadur Shah Zafar Indian Rebellion of 1857
Begum Hazrat Mahal Indian Rebellion of 1857
Asaf Ali Indian National Movement
Ashfaqulla Khan Kakori conspiracy

Top 10 Freedom Fighters of India

To make India a wonderful place to live, each Indian Freedom Fighter made his own unique contribution. To end the power of foreign imperialists and their Colonialism in India, a fairly large group of revolutionists and activists from different racial backgrounds got together. The top 10 freedom fighters of India are:

  1. Mahatma Gandhi
  2. Subhas Chandra Bose
  3. Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel
  4. Mangal Pandey
  5. Bal Gangadhar Tilak
  6. Bhagat Singh
  7. Chandra Shekhar Azad
  8. Ram Prasad Bismil
  9. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru
  10. Khudiram Bose

1. Mahatma Gandhi

Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, popular with the name Mahatma Gandhi or Bapu, is the Father of the Nation for his contribution to the nation. He was an Indian freedom fighter and reformist who initiated many movements and spread the ideology of non-violence. During his initial days, he started the following movements:

  • Champaran Satyagraha: 1917
  • Kheda Satyagraha: 1918
  • Ahmedabad Mill Strike: 1919

He was against the Rowlatt Act of 1919 and called this act the Black Act. In opposition to this act, he organized the Satyagraha Sabha. To achieve this idea, Purna Swaraj launched the Non-Cooperation movement in 1920. His other contributions include the Dandi March of 1930 against the salt law and the Quit India Movement in 1942.

2. Subhas Chandra Bose

Subhash Chandra Bose was among the most successful nationalist in Indian history. He was born on 23rd January 1897 in Orissa and was also widely known as Netaji. He was a fiery nationalist, and his relentless patriotism made him a hero. He entered the Indian National Congress and took part in the civil disobedience movement.

Bose belonged to the radical section of the Indian independence movement. He acted as the leader of a revolutionary young wing of Congress from the start of the 1920s to the end of 1930. He is supposed to have died in a flight accident on 18th August 1945.

3. Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel

Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel was a man of ethics and an Indian freedom fighter born in 1875 in Gujarat. He was a lawyer by profession, but he withdrew from his career. He was the secretary of a political organization named Gujarat Sabha. He won the “Iron Man of India” for his tremendous contribution to Indian independence.

He initiated the Kheda Satyagraha in 1918 under the guidance of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi against the high agricultural taxes. In 1928, he succeeded in canceling the increasing tax rates. After his success, he got the title of “Sardar”. He became the first deputy Prime Minister of India after independence.

4. Mangal Pandey

Mangal Pandey was an Indian Soldier who played a crucial role in starting the Revolt of 1857. He was the first freedom fighter in India who was appointed as a sepoy in the British East India Company in the 34th Bengal Native Infantry regiment. He initiated the rebellion against the East India Company for making the gun cartridge greased with animal fat (pigs and cows) that Muslims and Hindus could not consume as it was against their religion.

Mangal Pandey was one of the well-known freedom fighters of India who stood against such action and influenced his fellow sepoys to rebel and shoot the Europeans for guarding their religion and country.

5. Bal Gangadhar Tilak

Along with Bipin Chandra Pal and Lal Lajpat Rai, Bal Gangadhar Tilak formed the extremist wing of the Indian National Congress. He was a critical independence activist and an Indian Nationalist teacher. Being the first leader of the Indian Independence movement, he was entitled “Lokmanya.” He believed in Swaraj and is known to spread the same among the masses. He propagated the idea of nationalism among people by initiating the ritual of celebrating the Shivaji Utsav and Ganeshotsav (in 1894).

Bal Gangadhar Tilak was the founder of the Swadeshi Movement and the Home Rule League movement in the areas of Central Province and Maharashtra. To educate the masses about glorious Indian History, he started two newspapers in Marathi and English, namely Kesari and Mahratta. Along with all these contributions, he introduced the Trisutri-Swaraj, Swadeshi, and National education programs, i.e., the three-point program.

6. Bhagat Singh

Bhagat Singh was one of the appealing revolutionary freedom fighters of India who believed in the ideology of revolutionary socialism. Since his childhood, he has been against the British exploitation of Indians. In 1926, he founded the Naujawan Bharat Sabha, which sparked a revolution among the masses (young workers and peasants) against British rule.

Apart from being the secretary of the Sabha, he was also an active member and a leader of the Hindustan Republican Association. With his youthful thinking, he used to carry out specific political discussions in different study circles in Lahore.

  • He was highly inspired by Lala Lajpat Rai, who the police officers killed due to an extreme lathi charge during the Simon Commission protest;
  • So, he and his revolutionary friends decided to kill those policemen but ended up killing another one because of a lack of identity;
  • In 1929, he threw two bombs inside the Central Legislative Assembly;
  • They were arrested for this act and sentenced to hang out till death.

7. Chandra Shekhar Azad

Chandrashekhar Sitaram Tiwari, an Indian freedom fighter popularly known as Chandra Shekhar Azad, was born on 23 July 1906. He was a famous revolutionary freedom fighter of India who participated in the Non-cooperation movement started by Gandhi but got arrested during his participation in the movement. Later after the movement was suspended, he renounced non-violence.

Simultaneously, the founder of the Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA), Ram Prasad Bismil, and its three significant leaders (Rajendra Nath Lahiri, Roshan Singh, and Ashfaqulla Khan died. After this incident, Chandra Shekar Azad reorganized the association into Hindustan Republican Association (HRA). He started collecting funds from Hindustan Republican Association (primarily by robberies).

He got constant support from Motilal Nehru and was primarily involved in the following events:

  • Kakori train dacoity, 1925;
  • The shooting of John P. Saunders at Lahore, 1928;
  • Attempt to blow up the Viceroy of India’s train, 1939.

8. Ram Prasad Bismil

Ram Prasad Bismil was one of the notable freedom fighters of India and a patriotic poet. He formed a revolutionary organization called Matrivedi and launched Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA) with Ashfaqulla Khan, Sachindra Nath Bakshi and Jogesh Chandra Chatterjee, and Sachindranath Sanyal.

9. Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru

Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru is a renowned name in the Indian independence movement for his efforts to internationalize India’s freedom struggle. His first big involvement in India’s politics happened in 1920 during the Non-cooperation movement. He continued to fight for India’s freedom and became India’s first Prime Minister after independence.

10. Khudiram Bose

Born in Midnapur, West Bengal, Khudiram Bose was one of the youngest freedom fighters of India’s independence movement. At 15, he became a part of the Anushilan Samiti and joined in several revolutionary activities. At 18, Khudiram and Prafulla Chaki attempted to kill Douglas Kingsford, the British Chief Magistrate. Khudiram was arrested and sentenced to death by the court for this crime.

Women Freedom Fighters of India

It is impossible to undervalue the role played by women in the fight for India’s independence. A lot of strong women spoke out against British control. Many women freedom fighters in India marched in procession, gave speeches, and organized demonstrations and seminars. These women had great courage and a strong sense of patriotism. Following are a few well-known women Freedom Fighters of India:

  • Rani Lakshmi Bai
  • Annie Besant
  • Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay
  • Mirabehn
  • Begum Hazrat Mahal
  • Savitribai Phule

1. Rani Lakshmi Bai

Rani Lakshmi Bai, popular by the name of Rani of Jhansi in Indian History, was the wife of Maharaja Gangadhar Rao. She aimed to restrict the Britishers from attacking her palace and kingdom. After the death of her husband, she took the responsibility to protect her state and became queen of Jhansi from 1843 to 1853.

During the revolt of 1857, Britishers entered the Star Fort of Jhansi and seized the fort. She had a significant role during the revolt of 1857 and died in a fight with the British troops.

2. Annie Besant

On 1 October 1847, Annie Besant was born in Ireland’s Annie Wood. She was a well-known political activist, an advocate for women’s rights, and a freedom warrior against the church. After arriving in India, Annie Besant grew involved in the continuing fight for freedom against British rule.

Along with Bal Gangadhar Tilak, she established Home Rule League in 1916, continuing this important struggle with the objective of gaining the Dominion of India. Her work earned her the title of the First Woman President of the Indian National Congress in 1917. On 20 September 1933, she passed away in India. She had a strong, courageous personality all of her life.

3. Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay

Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay was one of the well-known freedom fighters of India and the first woman to run for office in India from the Madras Constituency, and even though she was defeated, she paved the way for future women in the country.

Her involvement in the fight for Indian independence and her role as the inspiration for the rebirth of Indian handicrafts, handlooms, and theater in an independent India made her most famous.

4. Mirabehn

Madeleine Slade, also known as Mirabehn or Meera Behn, emigrated from England to India in the 1920s to live and serve with Mahatma Gandhi. She supported the Indian Independence Movement on behalf of the British. She dedicated her life to spreading Gandhi’s principles and the advancement of humanity.

When Mirabehn was a resident of India, the liberation movement was at its height during the Gandhian era. She accompanied Gandhi and other guests to the Round Table Conference in London in 1931. It is called The Spiritual Journey in Mirabehn’s autobiography.

5. Begum Hazrat Mahal

Begum Hazrat Mahal, popular with the name Begum of Awadh, was born in 1820. She was the wife (2nd wife) of Wajid Ali Shah (Nawab of Awadh). Begum Hazrat Mahal led a significant role in the Indian Rebellion of 1857 against the rule of the British East India Company. Her contribution during the revolt inspired the youth, and they gave her the title “The Tigress.”

Her husband was exiled to Calcutta. So, to abolish the British rule from her kingdom, she declared her minor son the new king and herself a regent of Awadh. In the beginning, she used to work in association with Nana Sahib. But, later, during the Attack on Shahjahanpur, she joined the Maulavi of Faizabad.

6. Savitribai Phule

The first female teacher of India, Savitribai Phule, is a pioneering figure whose utmost importance as one of the female freedom fighters of India was gender equality and the upliftment of the marginalized. Along with her husband, Jyotirao Phule, she fought relentlessly to spread knowledge and education among the women of India and for the rights of women, Dalits, and backward classes.

Freedom Fighters of India UPSC

India has a rich chronology of freedom fighters who played an important role in getting independence for the country from British colonization. Several freedom fighters battled tirelessly, surrendering their lives and sovereignty to make India a self-dependent nation. The list of freedom fighters of India, their contributions, and the events of independence has an eminent role in the IAS Exam and comes under the Indian History Syllabus.

Candidates can read and learn about the first freedom fighter of India along with the list of freedom fighters using Indian History Notes for UPSC. You should practice Freedom Fighters of India UPSC questions to understand the topic well and score good marks in this particular section of the exam.

Freedom Fighters of India MCQs

Questions for Prelims: In which year the Interim Government of India (Arzi Hukumat-i-Hind) was formed by Subhash Chandra Bose? (1) 1941, (2) 1942, (3) 1943, (4) 1945
Answer: 1945

Question: Who gave the slogan, Satyameva Jayate? (1) Mohammad Iqbal, (2) Bal Gangadhar Tilak, (3) Bankim Chatterji, (4) Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya
Answer: Pandit Madan Mohan Malviya

Question: Freedom Fighter Shaheed Bhagat Singh was associated with which of the following Organisation? a) Hindustan Socialist Republican Association, b) Indian National Congress, c) Both Indian National Congress and Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA), d) The Swaraj Party
Answer: Hindustan Socialist Republican Association (HSRA)

Question: Which of the three freedom fighters of India were hanged to death in the Kakori Train Conspiracy in 1925? a) Sardar Udham Singh, Ram Prasad Bismil, Ashfaqulla Khan, b) Ram Prasad Bismil, Bhagat Singh, Ashfaqulla Khan, c) Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev, Rajguru, d) Roshan Singh, Ram Prasad Bismil and Ashfaqulla Khan
Answer: Roshan Singh, Ram Prasad Bismil and Ashfaqulla Khan

Mains Questions: Discuss how India’s freedom and ideals inspired other countries to fight for their independence and other injustices.

UPSC Notes
Dances of India Prehistoric Period
Types of Banks In India Role of Mahatama Gandhi in Freedom Struggle
Directive Principles of State Policy Governor General of Bengal
Schedules of Indian Constitution French Revolution
Important Articles in Constitution India Indian National Congress Session
Indian Judiciary IPC Sections List
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