India Independence Day
India Independence Day is celebrated on the 15th of August every year. The independence day of India marks the end of the British raj in India and the birth of a free, independent nation after a long struggle of more than 200 years. It holds a very significant place in the history of India as it reminds every Indian of the new beginning that was achieved by the blood and sacrifice of thousands of freedom fighters who laid down their lives so that we could see a new dawn in a free country.
15th August 1947 is the historic day when provisions of the 1947 Indian independence act came into effect and transferred India its legislative sovereignty. After adopting the constitution of India on the 26th of January 1950 India became a republic. Indian Independence Day also marks the anniversary of the partition of India and Pakistan.
The Indian independence movement is known worldwide for non-violent resistance against British colonialism.
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How is India Independence Day celebrated?
One can see government buildings and government offices, ministries, malls, etc., lit up in tri-color representing the Indian flag. A beautiful Rajpath can be seen all lit up before Indian Independence Day celebrations. All over the streets shops and people can be seen selling flags and kites for the occasion.
Television channels loaded with patriotic films, radios airing patriotic songs, and different programs held on the day create an aura and a spirit of patriotism among the people. On 15th August 1947, the first prime minister of an independent India hoisted the “Tiranga” (tri-color) on the Red Fort (in Delhi, which was a political center in British India). This started a tradition that continues to date.
Importance of Red Fort on India Independence Day
Celebrations take place all over the country but the main staging area is the Red Fort premises, in Delhi. The red fort a living symbol crafted the history of medieval India, and today it is a connection between the past and India’s present. The prime minister of India arrives at Red Fort after paying his respects at the Rajghat (a memorial dedicated to Mahatma Gandhi) and receives a salute from the guard commander who requests an inspection by the prime minister of the ready guard of honor (comprised of representatives from the Indian army, Indian navy, and Indian air force).
As the inspection starts the band positioned there strikes up a slow march. Then the Prime Minister moves towards the Lahori gate, the entrance of the central courtyard of the red fort from where he unfurls the national flag. With the unfurling of the flag, parallelly the band strikes the Jana Gana Mana (the national anthem of India) synchronized with 21 honorary gunshots (ikees topon ki salami) and then addresses the nation which is broadcasted on Doordarshan (India’s public broadcasting service).
Independence Day is celebrated with enthusiasm, with parades, march pasts, and many cultural performances in other parts of the country. Occurrences of kite flying as a competition and also as a festivity can be seen, which has been continued since 1927 when freedom fighters flew kites with slogans of “go back Simon” in protest.
What happened on 15 August 1947 (India Independence Day)?
Every year independence-Day in India is celebrated with enthusiasm and is declared a national holiday in India. On the midnight of 14th – 15th, August British India was divided into two dominions namely India and Pakistan. This division was a black mark on history because of the bloody violence that took place when the people across the border had to make a tough decision either to stay or to shift to the other nation.
This religious violence was a result of the decades of hate planted by the Britishers between the two of the major religions in India for their benefit to weaken the Indian freedom struggle starting from the division of Bengal.
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Role of Bengal Partition in the Division of India and Pakistan
Bengal the nerve center of Indian nationalism, was aimed at by the British so as to weaken it. The decision of the government to divide Bengal was made public in 1903. The reasons given were that the population of Bengal was too large to administer effectively. The partition of Bengal plays a key role in seeding the demand for two-nation at the time of independence.
They wanted to do this by dividing Bengal on the basis of language and on the basis of religion. To woo Muslims, Curzon argued to make Dacca the capital of the new Muslim Province, thus the government was propping Muslim communalists (as it has done before) to counter congress and the national movement.
Even after repeated petitions to the government, the British declared the partition in July 1905. On August 7th, 1905 with the passage of the Boycott resolution in the Calcutta town hall, the formal proclamation of the swadeshi movement was made. The movement saw huge participation from students, women, the Zamindari class, lower middle class in cities and towns.
Movements in support of Bengal’s unity and swadeshi were organized in many parts of the country which resulted in the annulment of the partition of Bengal. Just 6 years after the partition, in 1911 Lord Hardinge reunited Bengal in a response to the riots that took place in the swadeshi movement.
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Brief Struggle for India Independence
In the historic year 1757, the battle of Plassey was fought, the East India Company won, and after this, the power of the Company started expanding and they started to show their dominance over the affairs of the Indian states.
After this long struggle, the whole country united against the British rule to fight for Independence. During this freedom struggle, freedom fighters like Bhagat Singh, Chandrashekhar Azad, Subhash Chandra Bose, etc. laid their lives for India’s Independence, and finally, after this long struggle, India got the much-awaited Independence on the 15th of August 1947. India’s freedom struggle has always been an inspiration to the world as it was the most non-violent campaign that the world has ever seen.
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