Born on 31st October 1875, Patel completed his schooling at the age of 22 years. However, he would be a late bloomer and went on to study law and become a renowned Barrister.
He married Jhaverbaben Patel and moved to Godhara in Gujarat. He had to wait his time before going to Europe to study further and returned to India only to support his family, unperturbed by national struggle.
The first Home Minister of India was a man of iron will. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was also the first commander in chief of the Indian army until India became a republic in 1950. In 2018, India constructed a massive ‘Statue of Unity’ paying homage to this giant of a man and leader.
His first altercation with the British came in 1917 in Ahmedabad on the civil issue of sanitation. In October 1917, he met Gandhi and became the secretary of the Gujarat wing of the Indian National Congress. He was a successful barrister who now joined in the freedom struggle at the behest of Mahatma Gandhi.
During the Bardoli Satyagraha, he rose to prominence for his strong resolve and unfettering leadership. It was during this movement that he was given the moniker of ‘Sardar’.
He was particularly active in defending the rights of peasants, workers and farmers. He took part in several national movements like Civil Disobedience Movement, Quit India Movement etc.
However, the legacy of Patel was cemented after India got its freedom. He played the pivotal role in the assimilation of erstwhile Princely States of Hyderabad, Kashmir etc and cement the integration of independent India.
He was one of the first people to accept the proposed partition of India based on faith. He was also closely involved in segregating the public goods and assets between the two nations.
He was actively involved in aiding the victims of communal violence after partition of
the country. In his efforts, he also banned the Hindu rightwing organization named RSS who fomenting communal hate and disorder.
After independence, he joined the government as the first minister of Home Affairs and Information and Broadcasting.Patel took a lead in dividing public assets in the partition of India.
He will always be regarded as the ‘Ironman of India’ for his unflinching fortitude and
ability to show determination even in the face of insurmountable odds.