Mangal Pandey was born on 19 July 1827 in the village of Nagwa in the Ballia district of Uttar Pradesh. A sepoy in the 34th Regiment of the Bengal Native Infantry (BNI) of the English East India Company, he entered the annals of Indian history for attacking his British officers, sparking off the First War of Indian Independence or as the British termed it, the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857. At Barrackpore near Kolkata on 29 March 1857, Pandey attacked and injured his British sergeant, besides wounding an adjutant. A native soldier prevented him from killing the adjutant and the sergeant-major. He was arrested and sentenced to death. He was hanged on 8 April 1857.
The primary reason behind Mangal Pandey's behavior was because of a new type of bullet cartridge used in the Enfield P-53 rifle.
It was rumoured that the cartridge was greased with animal fat (pig and cow fat), which neither Hindus nor Muslims consumed. The cartridges had to be bitten off to remove the cover, which was detested by both the Hindu and Muslim soldiers in the army. The general feeling was that British intentionally did it. What added to the discontent was that the Commandant of the 34th BNI (Bengal Native Infantry) was a known Christian preacher.
There are many who have questioned whether Mangal Pandey was a brave martyr or one who attacked his officer under intoxication. The Bollywood movie, 'Mangal Pandey - The Rising' in 2005 was based on the life and times of Mangal Pandey. His life was also the subject of a stage play titled 'The Roti Rebellion'.
|Born||19 July 1827|
|Place of Birth||Nagwa, Ballia district, Uttar Pradesh, India|
|Died||8 April 1857 (aged 29), Barrackpore, Calcutta, West Bengal, India|
|Known for contribution as||Mutineer / Indian freedom fighter|
|Political Career||Sepoy (soldier) in the 34th Bengal Native Infantry (BNI) regiment of the British East India Company|
|Indian freedom movement|
|Shivaram Rajguru||Dadabhai Naoroji|
|Surendranath Bannerjee||Jatindra Mohan Sengupta|
|Laxmi Sehgal||Jawaharlal Nehru|
|Abdul Gafar Khan||Khudiram Bose|
|Rash Behari Bose||Lala Lajpat Rai|
|Rani Lakshmi Bai||Madan Mohan Malviya|
|Ram Singh Kuka||Mahatma Gandhi|
|Lala Hardayal||Mangal Pandey|
|Begum Hazrat Mahal||Maulana Abul Kalam Azad|
|Bipin Chandra Pal||Motilal Nehru|
|Sri Alluri Seetarama Raju||Nellie Sengupta|
|Veer Savarkar||Pandit Balakrishna Sharma|
|Subhash Chandra Bose||Puspa Lata Das|
|Bhim Sen Sachar||Ram Manohar Lohia|
|Acharya Kripalani||Ram Prasad Bismil|
|Aruna Asaf Ali||Sagarmal Gopa|
|Ashfaqulla Khan||Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel|
|Bal Gangadhar Tilak||Shaheed Bhagat Singh|
|Chandra Shekhar Azad|