Who could possibly forget this iconic photo of Mahatma Gandhi sitting with his charkha in jail? It was American photographer Margaret Bourke-White who captured this moment on her lens when she visited Gandhi in Pune where he was imprisoned.
On World Photography Day, let’s take you back in history. This picture of American photographer Margaret Bourke-White spinning khadi at Gandhi charkha was taken in 1946. White was in India on an assignment for Life Magazine during the years that led to the partition of the country. It was the Swadeshi movement that made Gandhi pick up the spinning wheel. He encouraged Indians to make their own cloth instead of buying British garments.
In February 1958, Mohammad Zahir Shah, the king of Afghanistan, visited India after an official visit to Pakistan. Received warmly by Indian villagers, he then proceeded to a banquet hosted by Rajendra Prasad, the then President of India: the King spoke about a lasting friendship between the two countries.
Mahatma Gandhi’s ‘Do or Die’ address in 1942 inspired the nation to unify against its British colonizers.
Born on August 16, 1904, Subhadra Kumari Chauhan was a poetess is best known for her evocative nationalist poem ‘Jhansi ki Rani’. In 1923, she became the first woman satyagrahi and used her poetry to call others to fight for India’s freedom. She published a total of 88 poems and 46 short stories.
Did you know Mahadev Desai was Mahatma Gandhi’s right hand man? The great patriot and freedom fighter who was at Gandhi’s side for several years died in prison on August 15, 1942. He was Gandhi’s secretary, typist, translator, counsellor, courier, interlocutor, trouble-shooter and much more.
When Mahatma Gandhi returned to India from South Africa in 1896, a chance interview with the editor of The Pioneer, an English daily, prompted him to pen the ‘Green Pamphlet’. Published on August 14, 1896, the Green Pamphlet exposed the conditions of Indian indentured laborers and coolies in South Africa.
Sarla Thakral was the first Indian woman to pilot an aircraft. At the age of 21, she did her first solo flight in a small, double-winged plane dressed in a sari. She completed 1,000 hours of flight time to get her license which was yet another first for an Indian woman.
Vikram Sarabhai, who is credited as Father of India’s Space Program, with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi during her visit to the Experimental Satellite Communication Earth Station in Ahmedabad. It was due to Sarabhai’s efforts that Aryabhata, India’s first satellite was put into orbit in 1975 from a Russian cosmodrome.
Back in 1946, the Congress held one of its last major sessions at Meerut’s Victoria Park, months before India’s Independence. At the end of the session, Pt Jawaharlal Nehru entrusted Maj Gen GR Nagar (inset) with the khadi tricolor that was used at the meeting. Ever since, the Nagar family has been safeguarding the 9×14 foot flag which features the full charkha.
JRD Tata created history when he became the first Indian to become a licensed pilot in 1929. He famously piloted the first-ever flight of Tata Air Services (now Air India) from Karachi to Mumbai on October 15, 1932.
Duration: 3 mins
Princess Sophia Duleep Singh selling The Suffragette Newspaper outside Hampton Court Palace where she had a suite of apartments. The daughter of the last king of Punjab and Queen Victoria’s goddaughter was a prominent suffragette figure in UK in the early 20th Century
Duration: 11 mins
1955: Jawaharlal Nehru and Sonia Gandhi taking the Moscow Subway during their 16-day visit to Russia – a turning point in Moscow-New Delhi relations. Nehru was popular: Driving through the streets of Yalta (then part of USSR), he would often catch bouquets of roses that came through his window from the crowds lined on the streets.
Duration: 2 mins
Mahatma Gandhi meets the Viceroy of India Lord Mountbatten and his wife, at the Viceroy’s House in New Delhi. (Image: Getty Images)
Gira Sarabhai and her brother Gautam are the pioneers of design education in India; they founded the prestigious NID in Ahmedabad in 1961
When Michelle Obama dazzled in a Naeem Khan gown at National Governors Dinner in 2016
Dadabhai Naoroji was nearly 90 when he met Annie Besant who became involved in India’s struggle for freedom and joined the INC
1952: The year wrestler KD Jadhav became the first Indian to bag an individual medal at the Olympics
Duration: 3 mins
Duration: 2 mins
1958: Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru declared a national holiday when Milkha Singh won a Gold at the Commonwealth Games
1945: The last time Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was arrested by the British police
Prodigious teenagers Sachin Tendulkar and Vinod Kambli during a school cricket game. Their 664-run partnership in 1988 is etched in the record books.
‘Quit India’ movement: A demonstration in Madras, calling for a boycott of the Simon Commission in 1928
1915: Trams passing the grand facade of Victoria Railway Station (Now Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus) in Mumbai
Duration: 1 min
An Air India airhostess aiding a passenger on a Delhi-Bombay flight in 1946
The Beatles during their time at Maharishi Mahesh Yogi’s ashram at Rishikesh
Poet and Physicist: Rabindranath Tagore with Albert Einstein in 1930