In 1905, Savarkar started his secret society Abhinav Bharat – on the lines of Young Italy the revolutionary society of Mazzini. At the time of India’s independence, many Congress Party leaders were still members of Savarkar’s secret society – the Abhinav Bharat. They included Balasaheb Kher, Chief Minister of Bombay Province, Ravishankar Shukla, Chief Minister of Central Provinces, Sikandar Hiyat Khan, the Muslim Chief Minister of Punjab just to name a few. President of the Congress Party Acharya J B Kripalani himself was a member of Abhinav Bharat.
Due to Savarkar’s efforts, there arose a succession of revolutionaries. For example, Khudiram Bose (1908), Madanlal Dhingra (1909), Anant Kanhere, Karve and Deshpande (1910), Bal Mukund, Avadhabihari, Amirchand and Vasant Vishwas (1915), Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev (1931), Udham Singh (1941) and many more. Those who were sentenced to death went to the gallows fearlessly. Even the British officers admired their courageous behaviour and it made tremendous impact on the minds of millions of Indians.
Those who were not sentenced to death were sentenced to Transportation for Life to the Andaman Islands. They too accepted their fate with fortitude. The first one to be sentenced this way was the elder brother of Savarkar, named Babarao (Ganesh). So important was the sentencing of Babarao that Viceroy Lord Minto informed it to the Secretary of State for India, London by telegram. Bhagat Singh and Rajguru met Savarkar secretly when the latter was in internment in Ratnagiri (1924-37). Subhash Chandra Bose met Savarkar in Mumbai in 1943. On Savarkar’s advice, Bose slipped out of India and later formed the Indian National Army.