Who Was Usha Mehta? Sara Ali Khan To Play This Indian Freedom Fighter

Sara Ali Khan, joined by Karan Johar, recently launched the inaugural motion poster of their upcoming film, Ae Watan Mere Watan, at the 54th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa. 

Trisha Majumder
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Who was Usha Mehta

Sara Ali Khan, joined by Karan Johar, recently launched the inaugural motion poster of their upcoming film, Ae Watan Mere Watan, at the 54th International Film Festival of India (IFFI) in Goa. The captivating poster depicts Khan's character speaking into a microphone, teasing fans with a glimpse of the film.


Sara Ali Khan recently shared the latest motion poster of Ae Watan Mere Watan on their individual social media accounts on Monday, November 20. Sharing the motion poster, she wrote, "Aazad aawazein, qaid nahi hoti” 🇮🇳🎙️ Presenting the motion poster of a film very very dear to my heart. A story of bravery that I believe deserves to be told- and I’m honoured to be a part of that telling."

Check out the post here. 

Who Was Usha Mehta?

Usha Mehta was a freedom fighter who played an extremely important role in disseminating news across the country through radio during the Quit India Movement in 1942. She was born in Gujarat and was heavily influenced by Mahatma Gandhi and his philosophies from a very young age. She started participating in Indian freedom movements right from the age of eight against Simon Commission. Her father was a judge under the British Raj and did not encourage her to participate in these movements soon they moved to Bombay but she did not let any of it stop her from voicing her rebellion against the British.


She completed her graduation and started preparing to study law when the announcement of the Quit India Movement happened and she decided to fully concentrate on the freedom struggles and take a break from her studies. She attended All India Congress Committee sessions to know more about the decisions being taken by the leaders. Mehta believed that radio could be the platform to reach many together to spread correct information and not be found by the police easily.

On August 14, 1942, Usha Mehta along with her associates announced the launch of Congress Radio. Mehta decided that she would read out the news bulletin in English and Hindi. Her famous line was "This is Congress Radio calling on 42.34 meters from somewhere in India". The radio show would begin with the song Hindustan Humara and end with Vande Mataram.

This radio show continued for some months by alternating their locations to hide from the British radar but on November 12, 1942, Usha Mehta along with her associates were caught and arrested by the British police and tried in court, following which she was given a jail sentence of four years. During her stay in jail, the police offered to send her abroad for studies if she revealed information about the freedom fighters but she refused and completed her sentence.

She was released in 1946 becoming the first political prisoner to be released in Bombay. According to reports, when Mehta got her release, she said, "I came back from the jail happy and proud because I had the satisfaction of carrying Bapu’s message, ‘Do or Die’ and having contributed my humble might to the cause of freedom."

In her later life, Usha Mehta attained a PhD in Gandhian thoughts. She has spoken about her thoughts about India post-independence in detail which have been compiled in a book called Freedom Fighters Remember, by Naveen Joshi. The Government of India awarded her Padma Vibhushan in 1998. At the age of 80, Mehta passed away.

Suggested Reading: Ae Watan Mere Watan: Sara Ali Khan Drops First Motion Poster

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