Bo Aung Kyaw

Bo Aung Kyaw (December 22, 1938/ 1:30 p.m/ Judson College)
During the third university boycott, on December
the 20th, 1938, students gathered since
early morning at the RUSU building. There were
26 buses in front of the building, many people
didn’t know yet that the ABSU leaders planned
to defy act 144. At 8.15, Ko Hla Shwe gave a
speech to the students and said, “Your facial
expression are very patriotic and nationalistic, I
believe that you are ready to give your right arm
for our cause. You seem don’t care if you are
killed or jailed. I believe your zeal. Today we will
defy the government’s unjust law. Don’t bring
a needle - we won’t use even a needle as a weapon.” The students were
very excited and shouted “Let’s go now”. There were 8,000 students. They
marched downtown. In fact, the students didn’t know where they were going;
it was still a secret. Only EC members knew the plan. When the students
were at the Government Secretariat building and encircling it, the
students realized their leaders’ plan. The students stood around the office
so that no one could enter or leave.
The British forces didn’t know how to handle it, and they looked ludicrous.
Students were shouting “We shall overcome”, and “We are the masters
of our country” etc. When the Police Commissioner gave an order to
the police to disperse the crowd, the police dragged them and kicked them
with their boots. Some students were injured and some were angry, but student
leaders warned that they should be patient and not fight back in any
way, warning them not to turn to violence.
At 10 am, the police encircled the students. At 11 o’clock, deputy commissioner
U Po Sa came and the police withdrew within half an hour. Many
people came and provided food and water etc for the students. Later, the
students decided to return Rangoon University, and departed from the of-
fice. However, they came across the police on the way to the University, and
the police wouldn’t allow the students to go forward. There was tension between
the students and the police. The students tried to pass by the police,
but were beaten with batons. Members of the public who were watching
and supporting the students were also beaten by the police. The police ruthlessly
rained blows on the students. Many students fell to the ground. Some
tried to run away from there and escape, but they were chased and beaten to
death by police. Many people and students were injured, including Ko Aung
Kyaw. His head was smashed by a police truncheon. Later he was died of
his injuries. After he died, he was called “Bo Aung Kyaw”. He was the first
student to be killed by the police in Burmese history.