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Lenin at 150: Twitter Flooded with Tributes as the Revolutionary's Name Hits Home for Many Indians

© Sputnik / Vladimir Astapkovich / Go to the mediabankA Lenin monument in Moscow
A Lenin monument in Moscow - Sputnik International
New Delhi (Sputnik): As the world commemorates the 150-year anniversary of Vladimir Lenin, Indians remember the Russian revolutionary leader, whose ideas strongly influenced the country’s struggle for freedom. The 1917 Bolshevik Revolution under Lenin inspired the Ghadar movement, the Khilafat impulse, and the Reshmi Roomal Tehrik in India.

Vladimir Lenin is termed controversial for his ideas and philosophy by historians, but India has a connection with the Russian revolutionary leader which dates back to the country's struggle for freedom.

On his 150th birth anniversary, Twitter has been flooded with tributes to the leader, whose ideas have influenced Indian politics.

To date, left-wing student organisations in India advocate the ideas of the founder of the Soviet Union. There have been many Indian artists who have remained admirers of Lenin and have penned poems about him.

​Known as the leader of the working masses, Lenin led India's leaders at the time of the freedom struggle, such as Jawaharlal Nehru, Mahatma Gandhi, B.R. Ambedkar, and Savarkar, to agree upon one thing and that was his ideas.

Lenin was also ahead in appreciating India’s mass movements for freedom: in the 1900s, freedom fighter Bal Gangadhar Tilak developed one of the first mass movements, Swadeshi, where the working class participated enthusiastically. In 1909, Tilak was slapped with sedition charges by the British authorities, invoking mass protests.

Lenin slammed the British, saying that with the “infamous sentence pronounced by the British jackals on the Indian democrat Tilak”, the “British regime in India is doomed”.

Soon after the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, India witnessed the Ghadar movement, the Khilafat impulse, and the Reshmi Roomal Tehrik — all mass movements against the British colonial rule.

India’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru even wrote "almost at the same time as the October Revolution led by the great Lenin, we in India began a new phase in our struggle for freedom. Our people for many years were engaged in this struggle with courage and patience. And although under the leadership of Gandhi we followed another path, we were influenced by the example of Lenin”.

Gandhi and Lenin’s ideas were two ends of the spectrum, but the two agreed on the definition of socialism, which termed it as more than just a transformation in economic relations, but a transformation in human psychology as well.

At present, the Hindutva right has reviled the revolutionary leader — considering the recent incident of removing his statue in the north-eastern state of Tripura— but their ideologue Veer Savarkar was influenced by Lenin’s thoughts as well. Indian Prime Minister Narenda Modi — who later condemned the incident of razing Lenin’s statue by his party workers — is also influenced by socialism and has been called a torchbearer of Lenin’s economic ideology by several experts.

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