Just overheard a conversation between two random Indian citizens --
Random girl to someone else: "Oh! Right! It is Independence Day tomorrow! Well, it no longer has any significance to me. I have given enough importance to this day back in school. Now it's just another day off from work."
A really old man walks up to that girl and says, "Beta, I guess you should probably go back to school and learn what this day means to citizens of this country.”
After decades of hysterical struggle and overcoming all the challenges, on 15th August, India woke up to a new life, as a free country. We owe our freedom to several revolutionaries like Rani Lakshmibai, Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Mahatma Gandhi, Netaji Subhashchandra Bose, Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Vallabhai Patel, who selflessly dedicated the prime of their lives for freedom struggle. India, being one of the oldest civilizations of mankind, has never invaded any country, but has always adopted and absorbed, being true to the old adage of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’, which in English means one world one family, i.e. every living being on the earth is different and we should all respect this difference.
We all probably know this famous Bollywood movie in which the hero educates a foreign national about India no longer being the land of snake charmers as it was once falsely perceived. In that one scene the hero very subtly highlights all important aspects of India such as unity in diversity, military strength, responsible for important technical inventions such as zero, trigonometry, etc. and last but not the least, humility. We have the determination, skill, strength and knowledge to be among the best but at the same time we respect our adversaries, and make every effort to live peacefully with everyone.
Today, India is world’s largest democratic country and one of the fastest growing economies amid copious quandaries plaguing our modern society, due to which ‘independence’ remains a mere abstract idea to many. However, no country is perfect; we, the people have to make it better by realizing that “In democracy the government is of the people, by the people and for the people.”
It all started on 15 August, 1947, when in the wake of independence, our first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru said, “Long years ago we made a tryst with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially.”
This Independence Day, let us take a pledge to rise above self interests and instil a sense of morality, responsibility and respect through our actions in order to give real substance to our patriotism.