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Thursday, January 25, 2018

Celebrating 69th Republic Day of the Nation

The history of our  Nation is a fascinating epic of a great civilisation. It is a history of amazing cultural continuity.  Though the history was written by invaders and we might not have studied the fullest glory of the Nation, the Gangetic civilisation and its influence on humanity, the growth of royal institutions are all brilliant.  The great cities of Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro when  discovered in the 1920s, presented India in a greater perspective to the whole World.   the history of the Indian subcontinent attained a new dimension.  The  great cities of the Indus civilisation proved to be much older. Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro show a surprising similarity although they were separated by about 350 miles. In each city the archaeologists found an acropolis and a lower city, each fortified separately.

The Nation has a great history but was subjugated for a couple of centuries by the British and 15th Aug 1947 provided happiness.  There is another day of National importance.  Each year, 26th January is a day on which every Indian heart fills up with patriotic fervour and immense love for motherland. There are many significant memories as it was this day when the Indian Tricolour was first unfurled in January 1930 at Lahore, by Pt Jawaharlal Nehru and the declaration of an independent Indian National Congress was made.

26 January, 1950 was the day when the Indian republic and its constitution came into force.  For us love for the Nation is the foremost and Mother India ranks upper most in our heart and mind. 

India - the Maha Bharat  is a great Nation where humanity has lived since ages. The month of January creates an aura of patriotism as Republic Day falls in this month.  After independence, laws were based on modified colonial Govt. Of India Act 1935 – a draft Constitution was prepared by the committee and submitted to the Assembly on November 4, 1947. The Assembly met, in sessions open to public, for 166 days, spread over a period of 2 years, 11 months and 18 days before adopting the Constitution. After many deliberations and some modifications, the 308 members of the Assembly signed two hand-written copies of the document (one each in Hindi and English) on January 24, 1950. Two days later, the Constitution of India became the law of all the Indian lands. The Constitution of India came into effect only on January 26, 1950. Following elections on January 21, 1950, Rajendra Prasad was elected as the president of India. This was, in fact, a deliberate act, signing the constitution on January 26, to mark and respect the freedom fighters who wanted January 26, 1947 as India's initial Independence day.

Thus on 26th January, 1950 that Republic of India was formed and the Constitution of India came into force. Over these years India has come a long way in overcoming various obstacles and hurdles to rejoice in the moments of triumph, glory and the pride of being an independent nation. Republic Day reminds us of the fulfilment of the pledge that was made on the midnight of Independence as a "tryst with destiny". Republic Day is celebrated with much enthusiasm throughout the country. The patriotic fervour of every Indian on this day brings the whole country united. To honour the occasion, a grand celebration is held at New Delhi, the national capital. The celebrations begin with spectacular presentation projecting India's military prowess. The President of India - unfurls the National Flag, followed by the National Anthem. The different regiments of Army, Navy and Air Force march in-synchrony from Rashtrapati Bhavan, along the Rajpath and reach the India Gate saluting the President of India, who is also the Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Armed Forces. This is followed by a massive parade by other military troops including State Regiments.  

Since 1950, India has been hosting head of state or government of another country as the state guest of honour for Republic Day celebrations in New Delhi. During 1950–1954, Republic Day celebrations were organised at different venues (like Irwin Stadium, Kingsway, Red Fort and Ramlila Grounds). It was only starting 1955 when the parade in its present form was organised at Rajpath.  The guest country is chosen after a deliberation of strategic, economic and political interests. Do you know, who is the Chief Guest this year ??

The transition of India from a British colony to a sovereign, secular, and democratic nation was indeed historical. It was a long journey of around two decades that started with the conceptualisation of the dream in 1930 to its actual realization in 1950. The seeds of a republican nation were sowed at the Lahore session of the Indian National Congress at the midnight of 31st December 1929.  Those present in the meeting took a pledge to mark January 26 as "Independence Day" in order to march towards realizing the dream of complete independence from the British. The Lahore Session paved way to the Civil Disobedience movement. It was decided that January 26, 1930 would be observed as the Purna Swaraj (complete Independence) Day. Many Indian political parties and Indian revolutionaries from all over the country united to observe the day with honour and pride. On this Republic Day, read what the great Constitution of India, that propounds liberal democracy, has in its store. Let's also feel proud in pronouncing what the Preamble to our Constitution says.

History will repeat itself this Republic Day. On January 26 , 1950 when India celebrated its first Republic Day, the chief guest was south-east Asian strongman Sukarno. Sixty-eight years on, India has again invited an Indonesian President, Joko Widodo, to grace the occasion. Only this time, the Indonesian President will not be the solitary chief guest. The country will roll out the red carpet for heads of nine other Asean countries who will witness India display its military might and cultural diversity during the parade.  Leaders from the 10 nations -- Thailand, Vietnam, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos and Brunei -- will be present on a stage enclosed with a 100 feet wide bullet-proof glass.

This year the Guests in the function would be :
1.         Joko Widodo, President of Indonesia since2014.
2.         Lee Hsien Loong, the third can current Prime Minister of Singapore has been in office since 2004. Mr Lee is the eldest child of Singapore's first first Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew.
3.         Nguyen Xuan Phuc, Prime Minister of Vietnam and member of the Politburo of the Communist Party of Vietnam.
4.         Dato Sri Mohammad Najib bin Tun Haji Abdul Razak, Prime Minister of Malaysia was sworn into office in 2009. He is the eldest son of Abdul Razak Hussein, Malaysia's second Prime Minister.
5.         General Prayut Chan-o-cha, a retired Royal Thai Army officer and current Prime Minister of Thailand.
6.         Aung San Suu Kyi, State Councillor of Myanmar serves as the country's de facto leader and has been in office since 2016. She was also the recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1991.
7.         Rodrigo Duterte is the President of Philippines, who took office in 2016. The 71-year-old is the oldest in his country to assume presidency. 
8.         Haji Hassanal Bolkiah Mu'izzaddin Waddaulah, Sultan of Brunei is also the first and current Prime Minister of Brunei. He acceded to the throne after the abdicatrion of his father Omar Ali Saifuddien III.
9.         Thongloun Sisoulith, the Prime Minister of Laos.
10.       Hun Sen, Prime Minister of Cambodia has been in office since 1985. He is Cambodia's longest serving head of government.
Let us all celebrate Republic Day 2018 with gaiety.  Jai Hind

With regards – S. Sampathkumar

25th Jan 2o18.

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