(Last Updated on : 06-08-2012)
Asoka Mehta, alternatively spelled as Ashok Mehta, was a prominent Indian freedom fighter and a nationalist. He was one of the most well known Indian socialist politicians and was one of the major leaders of the Indian National Congress
Party. Mehta, along with Jai Prakash Narayan (Jayaprakash Narayan
), aided in the organisation and setting up of the socialist wing of the Indian National Congress Party. He was also deeply involved in the politics and the administration of the western Indian city of Bombay, presently known as Mumbai
. Asoka Mehta was born on 24 October 1911 in Bhavnagar. He actively participated in the Quit India movement
, also known as August Movement or Bharat Choro Andolan, which was a civil disobedience movement launched by Mahatma Gandhi
in August 1942.
Due to his involvement with the Quit India movement, Asoka Mehta was arrested by the British Indian Police and was sentenced to rigorous imprisonment. After the nation achieved independence from the rule and suppression of the British Empire in India
, he aided in the setting up and organisation of various Trade Unions in Bombay (now Mumbai
). Later, Asoka Mehta was appointed as the Mayor of the city of Bombay in the year 1946 and he served the position until 1947. During the early 1950s, he retired from active politics. In his later life, Mehta wrote a number of books that focused on his experiences, on the Indian freedom struggle and the significance of socialist reforms.
The Praja Socialist Party
(PSP) was established in September 1952 with the merger of the Socialist Party and the Kisan Mazdoor Praja Party
(KMPP). Asoka Mehta was appointed as the General Secretary of the Praja Socialist Party (PSP) and later served as the Prseident of the party from the year 1959 to 1963. In the same year, he agreed to be appointed as the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission. Later in the year 1964, Mehta was evicted from the Praja Socialist Party (PSP), he became a member of the Indian National Congress Party.
Asoka Mehta became a member of 1st Lok Sabha and 2nd Lok Sabha during the year 1954 to 1957 and 1957 to 1962. He was again elected for a 3rd time for the 4th Lok Sabha
from Bhandara Lok Sabha constituency. Mehta became a member of Rajya sabha during the year 1966 until 1967. Asoka Mehta died in the year 1984.