Govind Ballabh Pant
- He was the Premier of United Provinces (1937 – 1939),
- He was the First Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh (1946 -1954)
- He became the Union Home Minister (1955 – 1961)
- He was a recipient of the highest civilian award, the Bharat Ratna in 1957.
- It was during his tenure that states were re-organised on linguistic lines.
- He is remembered as one of the country’s most prominent freedom fighters and an administrator.
Contributions in National Movement
- In Kashipur, he established an organisation called Prem Sabha that started working towards several reforms.
- He also saved a school from shutting down due to non-payment of taxes to the British government.
- As a lawyer, he fought the Kakori case.
- Following Gandhi’s footsteps, Pant also organised a massive salt movement in the United Provinces.
- In May 1930, he was arrested and held at Dehradun jail.
- He was elected to the United Provinces Legislative Assembly as the candidate of the Swarajist Party from Nainital.
- When in government, he contributed to the cause of society as,
- He tried to bring in reforms which would do away with the Zamindari system.
- He pleaded to the Government for lowering agricultural taxes on farmers.
- He encouraged many cottage industries in the country
- He raised his voice against the coolie-beggar law, which forced porters to transport the heavy luggage of British officials without any payment.
- He was always against a separate electorate for minorities, saying the step would further divide communities.
- He also protested against the Simon Commission.
- During the Second World War
- He tried to conciliate between Gandhi’s faction, which advocated supporting the British Crown in their war effort, and Subash Chandra Bose’s faction, which advocated taking advantage of the situation to expel the British Raj by any means necessary.
- He was arrested from 1942-45, for signing the Quit India resolution, he spent three years in Ahmednagar Fort.
Contributions in free India
- As the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh, he worked for the upliftment of the farmers and the eradication of untouchability.
- As a Home Minister, he championed the cause of Hindi as the national language or rashtrabhasha.
- A statue of Govind Ballabh Pant that was removed from the Parliament premises recently would be unveiled at its new location, a roundabout opposite Gurdwara Rakab Ganj on Pandit Pant Marg.