Indulal Yagnik

Indulal Kanaiyalal Yagnik (22 February 1892 – 17 July 1972) was an Indian independence activist, a leader of the All India Kisan Sabha and one who led the Mahagujarat Movement, which spearheaded the demand for the separate statehood for Gujarat on 8 August 1956.[1] He is also known as Indu Chacha.[1][2] He was also a writer and film maker.[2]

Indulal Yagnik
ઈન્દુલાલ યાજ્ઞિક
Indulal Yagnik 1999 stamp of India.jpg
Born(1892-02-22)22 February 1892
Nadiad, Kheda, Gujarat
Died17 July 1972(1972-07-17) (aged 80)
MonumentsA statue in garden at east end of Nehru Bridge, Ahmedabad
Other namesInduchacha
Alma materGujarat College, Ahmedabad; St. Xavier's College, Mumbai
OccupationIndependence activist, politician, separatist, writer, editor, film maker
Years active1915–1972
EmployerBombay Samachar
OrganizationGujarat Kisan Parishad, Mahagujarat Janata Parishad, Nutan Mahagujarat Janata Parishad
Known forleading Mahagujarat Movement
Notable work
Autobiography Atmakatha (Gujarati: આત્મકથા)
Parent(s)Kanaiyalal Yagnik (Gujarati: કનૈયાલાલ યાજ્ઞિક)

Yagnik was elected to the 2nd Lok Sabha from Ahmedabad constituency in the erstwhile Bombay state in 1957. He was re-elected to the 3rd, 4th and 5th Lok Sabha from the same constituency from 1962–1972.[3]

Early life (1892–1915)Edit

Yagnik was born at Jhagadia Pol in Nadiad, Kheda, Gujarat.[4] His father Kanaiyalal died at a young age while studying. Yagnik completed his primary and secondary education in Nadiad and after passing the matriculation examination in 1906, he joined the Gujarat College in Ahmedabad. After passing the intermediate examination, he took admission to the St. Xavier's College, Bombay and passed his B.A. examination from there. In 1912, he passed his L.L.B. examination.[3]

Independence movement (1915–1947)Edit

Yagnik was deeply influenced by Annie Besant during his college days. In 1915, along with Jamnadas Dwarkadas and Shankerlal Banker, he published an English language magazine, Young India, from Bombay.[3][5] In the same year, publication of the Gujarati monthly Navjivan ane Satya started. Yagnik was its editor until 1919, when he handed it over to Mahatma Gandhi. He wrote the first 30 chapters of Gandhi's autobiography in Yeravada jail after taking dictation from him.[6]

He joined the Servants of India Society in the same year but resigned in 1917 and joined the Home Rule Movement.[3] In 1918, he participated in the Kheda Satyagraha led by Gandhi.[7] In 1921 he became the secretary of the Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee. In October 1922 he started another Gujarati monthly, Yugadharm. He was imprisoned by the British from April 1923 to March 1924.[3] From 1924–28, he was the editor of Hindustan, a Gujarati daily from Bombay. During 1926–27, he was also an assistant editor of The Bombay Chronicle. He travelled to a number of countries in Europe from 1930–35.[3]

In 1936, he took active initiative in the formation of the All India Kisan Sabha and participated in its first session.[8] In 1939, he founded the Gujarat Kisan Parishad. He was again imprisoned during 1940–41 for his anti-war campaign. In 1942, he presided over the annual session of the Akhil Hind Kisan Sabha. He started thea Gujarati daily Nutan Gujarat in 1943.[3]

Post-independence (1947–1972)Edit

In 1956, Yagnik led the Mahagujarat Movement for a separate Gujarat state and became the founder president of the Mahagujarat Janata Parishad.[3] In 1957, he was elected to the 2nd Lok Sabha from Ahmedabad constituency as a Mahagujarat Janata Parishad candidate.[3] After the formation of Gujarat state on 1 May 1960, Mahagujarat Janata Parishad was dissolved.[9] In June 1960 he founded the Nutan Maha Gujarat Janata Parishad and was re-elected to the 3rd Lok Sabha as its candidate in 1962.[3]

He died on 7 July 1972 at Ahmedabad.



Statue of Indulal Yagnik in a garden at east end of Nehru Bridge, Ahmedabad
  • Yagnik's most notable work in Gujarati language is his autobiographical work, Atmakatha (Gujarati: આત્મકથા) in six volumes.[2][10][11]
    • Jivan Vikas (Development of Life)
    • Gujarat ma Navjivan (New Life in Gujarat)
    • Karavas (Imprisonment)
    • Jivan Sangram (Life's Struggle)
    • Kisan Katha (Peasant stories)
    • Chhella Vahen (Last streams)
  • Yaroḍā āśrama:1923–24 na Gandhiji na Karavas na Sansmarano, 1952 – reminiscences about Mahatma Gandhi during his imprisonment in Yeravada Jail[10]
  • Pīr-i Sābarmatī (Urdu) (Gandhi as I knew him), 1943[11]
  • Shyamaji Krishnavarma: life and times of an Indian revolutionary, 1950[11]
  • Fight for Swadeshi, 1954[11]
  • Raṇachoḍadāsa Bhavāna Loṭavālā nī jīvana jharamara (Life of Ranchoddas Bhavan Lotvala), 1952[11]
  • His novel Maya has the Mahagujarat Movement as the backdrop and he wanted to make a Hindi film on the subject but it never happened.[12]
  • Jaher Jivan na Sathi[10]


He started or edited several magazines including Young India, Navjivan ane Satya, and Yugadharm, and newspapers including Mumbai Samachar, Nutan Gujarat, The Bombay Chronicle, and Hindustan.


  • Asha-Nirasha – a play depicting the Satyagraha movement in Bardoli, Gujarat[11]
  • Raṇasaṅgrāma – collection of three plays[10]
  • Śobhārāmanī saradārī[10]
  • Varaghodo : Jagrat Stritva nu Natak – a play on feminism[10]


  • Rashtrageet – anthology of patriotic poetry[10]

Short notesEdit

  • "A Programme of Swadeshi for Complete Swaraj", 1967[10]
  • "Agrarian Disturbances in India"[10]


His company, Young India Pictures, produced more than ten films in Gujarati.[2][13] Some of them are:

  • Pavagadh nu Patan (1928)
  • Kali no Aekko
  • Kashmir nu Ghulab
  • Young India
  • Rakhpat Rakhapat


  • India Post issued a postage stamp depicting his photo with his publication Navjivan and a couple holding the flag in background on 9 December 1999.[14]
  • A statue of Indulal Yagnik was erected in a small garden at east end of Nehru Bridge, Ahmedabad, and the garden was named after him.[15]


  1. ^ a b Vashi, Ashish (29 April 2010). "Lifting Indu Chacha to higher pedestal". The Times of India.
  2. ^ a b c d Vashi, Ashish (24 June 2011). "Reprint of Indulal Yagnik's autobiography set for release". The Times of India. Retrieved 29 November 2012.
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j Chakrabarty, Bidyut (1990). Subhas Chandra Bose and middle class radicalism: a study in Indian nationalism 1928–1940. London: I. B. Tauris. p. 178. ISBN 1-85043-149-3.
  4. ^ Chavda, Hitesh (22 February 2013). "Birthplace of architect of Gujarat in shambles". Retrieved 4 September 2014.
  5. ^ Chandra, Bipan and others (1998). India's Struggle for Independence, New Delhi: Penguin Books, ISBN 0-14-010781-9, p.161
  6. ^ "Indulal boycotted Swadeshi movement to express disapproval of Bapu's philosophy". The Times of India. 25 June 2011. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
  7. ^ Chandra, Bipan and others (1998). India's Struggle for Independence, New Delhi: Penguin Books, ISBN 0-14-010781-9, p.180
  8. ^ Chandra, Bipan and others (1998). India's Struggle for Independence, New Delhi: Penguin Books, ISBN 0-14-010781-9, p.345
  9. ^ Vashi, Ashish (30 April 2010). "Common man who never became CM". The Times of India. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
  10. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Google books Author search".
  11. ^ a b c d e f "Google books Author search".
  12. ^ Vashi, Ashish (27 April 2010). "Midnight's Children saw golden dawn". The Times of India. Retrieved 25 November 2012.
  13. ^ K. Moti Gokulsing; Wimal Dissanayake (2013). Routledge Handbook of Indian Cinemas. Routledge. p. 89. ISBN 978-1-136-77284-9.
  14. ^ "Photo Gallery-Indulal Yagnik Stamp". Press Information Bureau. Retrieved 30 November 2012.
  15. ^ Vashi, Ashish (29 April 2010). "Lifting Indu Chacha to higher pedestal". The Times of India.