Queens ½
Top to bottom, Left to right:

Mastani is known for being the “other woman” in the immensely popular film Bajirao Mastani but was also skilled in Warfare and accompanied her husband on his military campaigns

Rani Rudruma Devi: Succeeded her father to the Kakatiya throne at just 14 and faced much opposition because she was a woman. However, she refused to step down and took up arms against the nobles who opposed her ascension

Rani Velu Nachiyar: Became queen after her husband’s death and lead armies against colonial powers in 18th Century Tamil Nadu. She also formed women’s army called Udaiyaan after her deceased daughter

Rani Abbakka Chowta
One of the first freedom fighters in India, she defended her kingdom against the Portuguese for four decades in various armed struggles

Rani Laxmi Bai
Rani Laxmi Bai popularly known as Jhansi Ki Rani (queen of Jhansi) is possible the most popular Indian woman fighter in history. She became a symbol of resistance with her battles against the forces of the East India Company and legend says she fought many of these battles with her baby son on her back

Kittur Rani Chennamma
One of the earliest female leaders to lead battles against the British, Rani Chennamma lead many successful military campaigns against the Colonial power in the early 19th century

@reclaimthebindi @fuckyeahsouthasia @asianhistory

Elsa Martinelli, at home, seated at her piano, 1957. Photo by Angelo Frontoni.

Born Elisa Tia, Martinelli in 1953 was discovered by Roberto Capucci who introduced her to the world of fashion. She became a model and began playing small roles in films. She appeared in Claude Autant-Lara’s Le Rouge et le Noir (1954), but her first important film role came the following year with The Indian Fighter opposite Kirk Douglas, who claimed to have spotted her on a magazine cover.

7:30pm, 23 March 1931, Central Jail, Lahore, British India.

The bitter Lahore cold had kicked in after dusk, the namaz(muslim prayer) echoed from the nearby mosque. The streets of the old city were eerily quiet. Behind the high brick walls of the cantonment complex, there was a body that stood suspended in the air for a full hour. The warden ascertained that no misadventure had occurred and Bhagat Singh was pronounced dead by the medical officer. The city, or rather nation had lost their hero. This is a little anecdotal rendition of the execution of one of, or maybe the most, influential indian freedom fighters. Today marks the 84th death anniversary of this revolutionary. Singh has been my idol since i was a young boy because i always had a sense of connection with his intentions or rather his beliefs. Yes people of that time opposed him for being violent, or non-pacifist but how can every revolutionary be the same if he seeks to achieve his goal.

Singh was at the tender age of 23 when he was judicially murdered for offences that include plotting a conspiracy against the British Empire. Singh had shot a police officer by the name of Saunders, to avenge the death of his fellow comrade. Singh had managed to escape the police. What i admire about this part of Singh’s life is that how he swiftly managed to escape the tight security that was arranged to keep an eye for youths that were leaving Lahore. Singh, being a brilliant academic, disguised himself in western attire and sent towards Calcutta.

There he continued his revolutionary activities but alas, he was arrested for another conspiracy case. This time he had thrown bombs and leaflets propagating a free India inside of the Central Legislative Assembly. Singh was arrested this time, another remarkable point to note that he made no attempts to resist arrest but rather stayed in the assembly chanting slogans like “Long live revolution”

He was then sent to Delhi jail where, he led another series of revolutionary activities. He demanded equal rights for Indian and Western prisoners. He then led a hunger strike for 116 days. After which the British agreed to the prisoners demands for equal hygiene and the availability of amenities for Indians in jail.

Singh was then due to be sentenced in the next few days, his time was coming to an end. This were his final words before going happily to the gallows. “I have been arrested for waging a war, for me there can be no gallows”. Singh had successfully ignited the fire of revolution amongst the young people in India, and his dream of a free indian came true 16 years later.

While we’re mourning the passing of Mr Lee Kuan Yew today, let us not forget other revolutionaries who have played a significant part in the shaping of the countries. I would like to change my view that Bhagat Singh is a hero. Rather, i would say that he is a legend because heroes get forgotten but legends remain immortal.

Let me conclude this piece with a poem by Singh when he his time was coming.

“Non-violence is backed by the theory of a soul-force in which suffering is courted in a hope to win over the enemy. But what happens when such an attempt fails to achieve the objective? It is here that soul-force is combined wit physical force so as to not remain at the mercy of the tyrannical and ruthless enemy”


India’s aircraft carriers, INS Vikramditya and INS Viraat  participating in the International Fleet Review (IFR) 2016.

This is the last offical occasion where these two will be seen together, INS Viraat, formerly HMS Hermes, is to be decommissioned by the middle of 2016 after having served the Indian navy for almost 29 years.