Opinion » Lead

Updated: August 15, 2013 01:13 IST

The rediscovery of India

Gopalkrishna Gandhi
Comment (50)   ·   print   ·   T  T  

The country today needs to reinvent itself through the ideals and dreams that drove the Independence movement

Anniversaries chime, mime.

Repeating the sounds and the sentiments of the original event, they are meant to echo. But, mostly, they parody.

Days red-ringed on calendars are like Rose-ringed Parakeets. They please their “owners” by repeating what they have been drilled into doing.

The phrase signifying tedium — “year in and year out” — must come from the dull annuities of routine. Anniversaries placate routine. Repetition palliates nostalgia, packages and pots it.

Potted speeches, even stirring ones, seem “put on” when replayed to order. Archival photographs, even startling ones, seem to be serving another’s purpose when pulled out from their rest and streamed on today’s screens and surfaces.

August 15, for India, is no exception.

Many emotions

Catharsis surrounded that day in 1947. Joy and pain, triumph and tragedy were both in the air, like grey and silver clouds in astral combat. Ustad Bismillah Khan had played his mesmeric shehnai on the Red Fort’s great mound minutes before Prime Minister Nehru, shy of nothing but of the age 60, by two years, sprang to his feet. Chest out, chin up, he freed with unconcealed elation India’s new flag from its furls of subordination. If there is one word that can describe the mood of that day, it is the much-used one about the much-missed spirit — idealism.

What would Jawaharlal Nehru have had to say to the nation today, if he stood on the ramparts of the Red Fort? He would of course be speaking in Hindustani with a sprinkling of Urdu words which today could sound archaic, such as sifat (quality), iman (probity), zamir (conscience). But assuming he were to turn to English, Nehru’s 2013 message to the Indian people might go thus:

“Friends and comrades, I have had the great privilege, for it is no less, and the joy, for that is what it has been, to speak to you from atop these historic walls seventeen times. When I think of the great transactions of time that have taken place here, among these silent stones, such as the stately durbars of Shah Jehan, the petty machinations of Aurangzeb, the trial and murder of Dara Shikoh, the plunder by Nadir Shah, his loot of the Peacock Throne, the carnage around here during the Great war of Independence, Bahadur Shah Zafar’s pained sacrifice, and in what may be called ‘our’ times, the trial of the INA’s brave soldiers, and of the small men who slayed the Father of the Nation, I rather lose my words in my meandering thoughts. But you have not come here today to see me lose my words but, rather, to find them, to find the right words, the right thoughts, which may give you a sense of the importance of this day, this anniversary.

I speak to you today not as your Prime Minister but, rather, as one among you. I do not mean to or want to justify any action of our government. You who see its functioning day after challenging day can do that better than I who am trapped inside it. I often feel more locked up and caged in government than I did when I was in the jails of the British Raj. And the security guards around me — they of course are only obeying orders — stifle me. I often ask myself ‘What is all this for, this protection, this security, against whom?’ And then when I think of the man, the one man to who we owe our freedom more than to anyone else and how he just walked into three bullets, I feel ashamed of the cordons around me. And when I think of the violence both of the direct kind, and of the invisible, subtle kind that India’s daughters, India’s Dalits and tribals have to endure at the hands of brutes among her sons, I am again ashamed of the security around me. It is of course a fact that certain kinds of men, terrorists, they are often called, want to kill me. I am not afraid of death. I can grapple with any attacker and give him honest blow for blow. But I do not want to oblige some low-time mercenary or idiot wielding a gun!

Money power

We are living amidst terror, hatred, violence, and therefore in fear. There are people who thrive on those, hatred and fear. They have nothing else to them. How did this happen? When, why? I must say to you in all imandari (honesty) that the style of our siyasat (politics) has created this and politicians and political parties must take the zimmedari (responsibility) for this.

I do not intend to explain anything which our Parliament might have done or not done, either. We set it up with great arman (longings), arzu (wishes) and a sense of abru (self-respect). But when I see the way Parliament functions or, perhaps I should say, the way it does not function, it fills me with shame. Parliament is accountable before it is ‘Hon’ble’. It is obsessed by its honour when it should be absorbed in its duties.

And everywhere, money is King. Not the voter, not the Constitution, but money. When something or someone is King, what becomes of the Republic? From the roadside vendor who has to pay a regular mamul in some hundreds of rupees to the giant Corporate that bribes its way to contracts with so many zeroes that I cannot count, we are now become a Jamhuriyat-i-Naqad, a Republic of Cash.

We have become a soulless people, a people without self-confidence, without morale. A nation that does not have any ideals cannot survive. So, is there no hope? Is it all finished? Harghiz nahin, most certainly not. I spoke of the petty machinations of Aurangzeb, of the loot by Nadir Shah. We have modern versions of those amid us. But we also have, amongst us, great souls inspired by Dara Shikoh and Bahadur Shah. If we have men of the kind who killed our Bapu, we also have great and brave soldiers of a united India such as Netaji Subhas Bose would have been proud of.

What we need

And so while I am a disappointed man, as disappointed as you, not just in our politics and in our administration but in the reshe, tar and sut, the very fibre of our nationhood, I also know that the so-called ordinary people of India have an extraordinary core of values in them, plain human values that make them help each other in distress and in dejection. The number of courageous Indians who, unfazed by the wrongdoings of so many, continue to fight for justice, for honesty, for service, is amazing.

With their help, we must reinvent ourselves. We have to go back to where we started, to the roots of our ideals, our dreams. That good man, Kamaraj from Madras, you will remember, gave us a plan that we called the Kamaraj Plan. Ministers resigned office in large numbers to go back to the people, to where they came from. That gave us, then, an ehsas (sense) of idealism, of sacrifice and service for India’s greatness. I will say no more except this that India needs to be governed by men and women, even if they be from outside of Parliament, outside of politics, honest people, idealists, not self-seekers disguised as pragmatists, patriots who are motivated not by power and money but by the ideals of justice and fair-dealing, giving the nation a leadership that can look us — you and me — in the eye. As I leave you, I have a request: You have shown me love as you have shown perhaps to no one. But please do not iconize me, do not idolise me, do not make a cult of me. All cults are wrong, personality cults more than all others. Disagree with me, show me where I err, correct me. I would prefer that you do that than that you follow me unthinkingly. Oxen and sheep do that, not descendants of Asoka and Rajendra Chola, Akbar and Shivaji.

I now exhort you to say, chest out and chin up, not thrice from hollow lungs but just once like a bellow from your hearts — Jai Hind!”

(Gopalkrishna Gandhi is a former Governor of West Bengal.)

More In: Lead | Opinion

Mr. Gopalakrishna Gandhi is the right man to lead our country at this
critical hour - But,who will bell the cat - It is we the public should
unite together to build consensus for this in the interest of our

from:  R.Gurumurthy
Posted on: Aug 17, 2013 at 10:13 IST

I wonder how many of the commentators were born 67 years ago,in
1947,when we achieved Independependence.We had a literacy rate of
about 18%.We had lost about a million people due to partition.We had
no industries to speak of.Our country was a hotch- potch of princely
states and provinces carved out to satify the colonial power.There
were refugees streaming in from Pakistan and many groups rushing into
Pakistan.The Bihari Muslim population in Bangladesh is an example.
Those who say that we have made no progress in 67 years do not know
what they are talking about.In 1947,there was great fear that our
infant nation would not survive.There is no such fear now and our
future looks brilliant.
Let's give credit to the substantial achievements the country has
made and solve the many herculean problems yet to be resolved.

from:  M.P.Chandran
Posted on: Aug 17, 2013 at 04:48 IST

It is a big slap on the face of present PM by parody and very nicely
articulated. Full of rhetorics, empty in substance that can't give any subsistence and sucour to the poors in this nation who still don't know the very meaning of "Aazadi or Independence" and they are not miniscule but consists of miilions of Indian poors, numbers may be difficult to gauge but no less than half of its population. Sad and a nice satire, if someone will draw a message out of it. Will they...???

from:  Tejpal
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 23:28 IST

Sir,the above column written by you is heart rendering and it has
greatly inspired me.The suggestions given by you should be adopted as it
is the need of the hour. This column has inspired me and enlightened the
doused spirit of patriotism in my heart!Thank you writing such a
wonderful piece on the tragic downfall of this once glorious country.

from:  saloni dangwal
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 18:14 IST

The article is astounding. It depicts how will Mr. Jawaharlal Nehru will address the gathering if he is alive today. Sixty seven years of independence have not brought the changes that were envisaged by our leaders who struggled a lot for India's freedom.

from:  Vasumathi PB Varadhachari
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 13:57 IST

This is a true version of speech by a prime minister in my

from:  Prashant
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 12:02 IST

Very good article...Republic Indian should rethink on this

from:  Sumandhar Kamble
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 08:36 IST

Thank you. I have tears streaming down my cheeks. There are millions and millions of patriotic Indians, peace-loving, secular, nationalistic Indians just waiting to love India as it should be, as it was meant to be, a "light unto all nations."

from:  JJJackxon
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 06:50 IST

Thank u sir for shaping our thinking

from:  Arun Kr Singh
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 03:30 IST

"That good man, Kamaraj from Madras"
Mr.Gandhi. Do you know what Mrs. Indira Gandhi did to Mr.Kamaraj.

from:  Sundaram
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 01:42 IST

Beautiful article. So simple yet so difficult for people to work united
towards this vision.

from:  Sandeep
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 01:26 IST

The best line which I think most indians should follow
" But please do not iconize me, do not idolise me, do not make a cult of me. All cults are wrong, personality cults more than all others. Disagree with me, show me where I err, correct me. I would prefer that you do that than that you follow me unthinkingly. Oxen and sheep do that, not descendants of Asoka and Rajendra Chola, Akbar and Shivaji"

from:  Tulsi
Posted on: Aug 16, 2013 at 00:08 IST

We will not re-invent. We will endure destruction to the point where we will have to die and be reborn. Indians are not made of stern stuff. We accept being victims of many wrongdoings, and carry on mutely. We will pay a very very high price for this twisted non violent acceptance of all that is wrong.

from:  B S Kumar
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 23:59 IST

I despair when I ponder on the quagmire of India in all dimension.
Corruption is just imbibed into us. I agree with the sentiments of author on Republic of cash. Contemplate on any action, thought, plan you have, the ultimate goal is to make more cash!
We need to change the defination of success. At this moment, the only thought recurring in my mind is " Let's go to vedas..Swami vivekananda"

from:  Ripunjay
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 23:48 IST

Sir, its a soul rendering piece. In this world where every thing is a SHADE OF GREY we need to strictly adhere to WHITE and not accept any GREY. That's the only way to salvation

from:  Anonymous
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 23:39 IST

That was awesome.. came to know about a lot of things.. Happy Independence Day.. Feeling proud to be an Indian..

from:  Saurav Chanda
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 23:03 IST

Very well written and presented article. A nation is not only built by its government but its also built by its citizens. Looking at the Current scenario we need to stand strong against corruption and ill practises

from:  Abhay Chauhan
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 22:39 IST

Very normal and doesnt fit to be called Leaders speech. Melodramatic, thats a better way to describe it. And Does it offer any solution? Dont think so, but sure will be a feel good speech for poor.

from:  Sunil
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 22:09 IST

Spellbound. It is true that the ship is loosing its control over its rudder. Maybe it is time the young members of the crew joined arms to help the old captain gain confidence again. India will always have her sons to make her proud. Maybebit is time we turned our attentionnto drape our Mother in a new saree.

from:  Pritam
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 21:45 IST

Excellent article..hats off

from:  Julian Anand
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 21:13 IST

The time has come as the nation looks forward to a cleaner government
FOR the people and an Iron Man at the helm of affairs!
A very thought provoking article and profoundly put.

from:  Gordon Maelzer
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 21:12 IST

Gopalakrishna Gandhi's analysis through the imaginary Curent Indipendence Day address of
Nehru sums up the dismal state of India. Across the board right from the lowest rung of
position of authority to the highest levels nothing talks other than money. The social moral
and ethical standards of the people in authority have dropped abysmally low; the reason for
this is they achieve such positions by unethical methods and therefore the entire hierarchy of
administration/ governance is infested with such material. Elections are won through bribing
the innocent common man, only to regain multi-folds using their positions of authority.
Resolutions by oath on an Independence Day are nothing but hypocrisy. The solution lies in
sound election reforms that should specify stringent qualification standards for eligibility and
expeditious and stringent punishments to the officers in positions of authority guilty of
misusing their powers for personal gains.

from:  M.R.Sampath
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 21:07 IST

I agree with suggestion that the government should any public apology to
the children that the politicians have failed in doing a good job since
last 67 years. This kind of step will inspire people to be honest.
Honesty is we the citizens of India need in today's troubled times.

from:  Shreyash
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 20:54 IST

67 years ago....
Good people raised their voices against imperial rule and fought for justice and freedom.
Too many good people are just being spectators to the wrong deeds that are happening across our country.
Its time to have ethical society, or else we can't sustain this huge population.

from:  Charan
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 20:38 IST

An excellent presentation from the grandson of the father of the nation. Panditji wrote the
DISCOVERY OF INDIA, I am told, while in prison. Gopalakrishna Gandhi , can echo the
Sentiments of the first PM and present THE REDISCOVERY OF INDIA, to the nation.

from:  Gopal karumathil
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 20:02 IST

The grandson of MAHATMAJI, has succeeded very well in standing in the shoes of
PANDITJI, while analyzing the Present scenario on the independence eve. The people's
Republic as enshrined in the Constituion has become the REPUBLIC OF CASH. This is the
Main theme in the presentation , and this was done possibly due to the various scams
Baffling the nation. This should serve as real food for thought to all the political parties in
The country. When Panditji wasvin power, the bitterness between the party in power and
the opposition was not there to this extent. I remember a particular incident during the
elections. AK GOPALAN, the then lecader of the opposition was again seeking reelection to
The Lok Sabha. Panditji passed through that constituency but did not address the
electorate to attack Gopalan, and proceeded straight to Kozhikode for the election meeting.
To explain the Policy of Congress. Political tolerance has now vanished altogether

from:  C p Chandra das
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 19:53 IST

Fabulous article sir. Hats off. Happy Independence Day

from:  Jaydev
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 19:04 IST

I Agree with Luhar Sen. The word "our babu" itself is a cult. After 1947, lot of men wanted to be "bapu" by drinking condensed milk, nuts, fruits pealed by ashram fellows. India which was ruled by hand full foreigners for 1500 years cannot be a role model for other nations.

from:  Sundaram
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 18:16 IST

You mentioned Gandhi, bose , bahadur shah zafar also. But you are right in not mentioning the great bhagat singh because yes, Nehru would never have appreciated the courage and bravery of bhagat singh, rajguru and sukhdev. They would be deeply saddened to see the india we live in.

from:  Dilsher
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 18:06 IST

Awesome piece of writing.... I wish any of the minister have courage to accept their mistakes before the population instead of taking credits of what they have not done.. Totally mesmering speech..... A grand salute to the writer..

from:  Nikita
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 16:28 IST

India is celebrating today, but there is one point India has not solved during the last 66 years of independence. How to eradicate poverty. This is a decisive question and it must be solved. Despite being the fourth largest economy in the world, a large percentage of India´s population lives in absolute poverty. People around the country are involved in multiple occupations, ranging from textiles and agriculture to handicrafts and information technology. While there is certainly no lack of skilled labour in India, there is a lack of literacy amongst the nation´s poor resulting from the financial inability to acquire a proper education. This creates a vicious cycle, where generation upon generation of underprivileged individuals are unable to obtain the education they require to become successful in the rapidly expanding India of today.
Eradicating poverty in India would mean a complete revitalisation of multiple facets, including a better system not only to accommodate underprivileged student but to do so purely on the basis of need and intellect and not caste. This in itself could prove to be a daunting task since admission requirements to institutions higher education still vary for differ ent castes. Also, in order for the public to experience adequate medical attention, there would need to be an influx of medical facilities to accommodate the millions that will require medical care in the next years.
India´s economy has worked extremely well and the economic boom is fuelled by a generation of bright, English-speaking worker and professionals. This combination of skill and English language proficiency allows them to work remotely for foreign companies in call centres and custom service departments, and pursue careers ranging from IT domain to business environments in India as well as abroad.
However, there is still the matter of giving people the opportunity to reach this level of success, and this requires a drastic initiative to provide high quality education to the masses.There is a chance for dissolving poverty in India, but it will prove difficult to accomplish this task.
But education is the best way to eradicate poverty.

from:  kurt waschnig
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 15:02 IST

With all due respects to the author, let us not beat around the bush with a plethora of words from the Urdu lexicon, but just be morally honest enough to ask a few fundamental questions: why is that even after 66 years of "free" India, we have a propensity to support dynastic politics, why is that despite almost 6 decades of rule by a single party, Roti, Kapda, Makaan is an issue not just in the entire country, but more importantly from the very constituencies that have produced most of the ruling party PMs. If those who were entrusted with the task were been Imandaar,Zimmedar etc... we would not have an eulogy for a speech on the occasion of 67 yeas of "free" India. We would have had one that fills people with strength than despair. Guess, it would be more honorable to issue an official apology to the children of this country and tell that we have failed them (and how).

from:  Luhar Sen
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 13:49 IST

That such a meaningful article has come from the pen of Sri Gopala Krishna Gandhi is no surprise, considering that his genes came from two of India's greatest leaders, The Mahatma and Sri Rajaji. Till recently he was the Governor of West Bengal, the position his grand father Sri Rajai occupied on the day of our Independence.

As he himself has suggested, India should be led by people of selfless character. From his exemplary record as Indias Foreign Service officer and as West Bengal Governor, we can hope that he will be allowed to provide that rare kind of modern leadership from the Rashtrapathi Bhavan before long. A grandson of (real)Gandhi and Rajaji should do justice to that post and from Rashtrapathi Bhavan, he may well bring back to the country the value of honesty and integrity in public service.

from:  S.P. Krishna Murthy Dallas USA.
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 12:57 IST

One could hardly comprehend the mind/concern of veteran leader Gopal
Gandhi through this column, but understands the mind of Aam Admi of
the land or an IIT/IIM graduate on this august occasion. Contemporary
India has brought to this pass by none other than Congress party and
its leadership. Least endeavour has been made to eradicate poverty &
illiteracy and to provide Roti, Kapada and Makan but to amass money
for themselves,their families by fully understanding the intricacies
of politics in a democratic system. At least the country should have
been transformed trash-free like west by now which would have helped
improve health standards. With population beyond 1.25 billion it would
be disastrous in the days ahead if we do not have able corrupt-free
dynamic leadership. Discovery/Rediscovery of India History indicates
things would go on as it is in future too an we are indeed highly
conservative non-changers.

from:  Vyas K Susarla
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 12:06 IST

Well written Sir. I wish there were leaders in India who could follow their conscience, admit their mistakes, try to rectify them, enlighten the masses and bring growth,harmony and prosperity to our nation.

from:  rahul handoo
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 11:56 IST

The reconnoiter of Jawaharlal Nehru's vision in contemporary times by the author depicts the lost "subjectivity" and "objectivity" for which we yearn for "Independence" on the 66th anniversary of our glorified achievement. The rampart of Red Fort witnessed all tribulations of time which in contemporary being evanesced from our minds. Thanks! to all complexities which we imbibed in us far away from our novel objectives for a Just, Equal and benevolent society in general and politics in particular. Being the biggest democracy India should serve a model nation for others but the denigration in morals have put us in the dockyard in the global footing.
From the annals of history we can figure out that the inequity, class distinction, serfdom , monarchy etc. were responsible for revolutions : American, French and Russian. The governance in present times remind us of the similar milieu stratified in those time in the society at large. Let us not forget the recent Arab Spring...

from:  rishi
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 11:51 IST

Great thinking, elegantly expressed.
The country is full of icons and idols, not ideals; we must reinvent ourselves.
Jai Hind; not just, but; chest out, chin up, bellowing from deep heart!

from:  prajeesh eledath
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 11:34 IST

I totally agree with the content of the speech except for one - glorification of the past. Already we have paid a huge price in terms of loss of life and property before and after partition just because of glorification of the past during the early years of independence struggle...

Nehruji being a witness to this, I do not hope him to talk about Rajendra Chola or Akbar or Ashoka or Shivaji.. This leads to unnecessary digging of the past as to who was really a great administrator. We all know the contributions of these so-called Kings..

What I hope Nehruji will talk about is the cost we have paid to this rich , beautiful and sweet fruit - The Independent India....
I also hope he will address the nation about the uncertainities and chaos among people of this once colonial country which is sutured into a nation by joining pieces of nations. The call of the day would be to think of a single united nation called India rather than independent nations. What we need today is nationalism..

from:  Sri Pratap Manda
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 11:09 IST

I am pained, anguished by multitude of scams, a sham "demockery" of sorts, an economy or rather a country that seems to be on an autopilot... But I am simply amazed at the resilience of my motherland & her people. If properly organised we can no doubt work wonders and leave other nations behind. I am reminded of behaviour of crabs. No sooner one climbs the other pulls down and this is the bane of this country. Endless politics with people simply not applying mind on whether such antics are required at all.
But when the deliverance will come is everyones question. Perhaps it will be the day literate brothers and sisters of this country organise themselves and help poor & needy and learn to put the nation above anything else. Till then we will be a nation that is all at once fragmented yet united, progressing yet poor, a nation of discordant voices. My heart & of course of many readers, sometimes bleeds at this gloomy and dismal state of affairs. Hope to see a better and strong India.

from:  Balram Rathod
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 10:46 IST

Interesting piece of imagination by the writer. Having read few archives on, by, about Nehru ji, I can imagine him saying everything else but the last paragraph. Various historical accounts speak of his inability to listen anything against him. Is it only me because of selective reading or is there anyone else to who agrees with me?

from:  Abhishek
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 10:27 IST

It is true reflection of Indians mind who are disappointed over irresponsible behavior of government and degrading political values.

from:  Naveen Yadav
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 10:16 IST

A very true sentence:”The country today needs to reinvent itself through the ideals and dreams that drove the Independence movement.”
India is celebrating and on such a day is it important to think of the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. He was not the first, nor would he be the last, but he is certainly the most famous of the world´s peaceful dissidents. Mahatma Gandhi – also affectionately known as Mahatma – led India´s independence movement in the 1930s and 40s by speaking softly without carrying much of a big stick, facing down the British colonialists with stirring speeches and non-violent protest. For his troubles, he´s often named among the 20th century´s most important figures and remains revered in India as father of the nation. More than anything else, Gandhi proved that one man has the power to take on an empire, using both ethics and intelligence. Other peaceful resisters such as Martin Luther King Jr. during the 1960s civl rights movement and Tibet´s Dalai Lama have emulated his methods in years since, shaking up dynamic of world politics in the process.
Finding extreme poverty and famine in his own Gujarat province, Gandhi led an initiative to clean up the area, install new schools and build hospitals. He was ultimately arrested by British-appointed landlords for causing unrest, but talked his way out of jail and negotiated better conditions for the Indian farmers. Indeed, Gandhi was known as much for his wit and intelligence as for his piety. When he was arrested several more times over the years for his actions during the movement, Gandhi calmly fasted in prison, believing that his death would embarrass the British enough to spur independence, which had become the focus on his politics by 1920.
Gandhi´s non cooperation movement, kicked off in the early 1920s, called for Indians to boycott British goods and traditions and become self-reliant. His most famous protest came in 1930, when Gandhi led thousands of Indians on a 250-mile march to a coastal town to produce salt, on which the British had a monopoly.
India finally gained full independence in 1947 when Gandhi was 78. Although some historians argue that independence was inevitable with Britain´s economic collapse after World War II, most agree that it would not have happened without the foundation of dissent he built among several hundred million Indians throughout the 1920s and 30s.
Martin Luther King Jr. is said to be have been heavily influenced by Gandhi´s philosophy of non-violence, believing it to be the only logical approach to the problem of race relations in America.
Gandhi´s ideals and his vision have still the power to inspire Indians to create an India with opportunities for all.

from:  kurt waschnig
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 10:09 IST

Truely motivating. .will definitely get such motivation from Red fort day.....

from:  Dr SANTOSH
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 10:07 IST

I wish it could happen.

from:  sunder lohia
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 09:29 IST

Changes / discoveries do not happen all of a sudden. Everything needs
the gestation time. English rule was there for about 200 years; the
tyrant rulers also were there. In the name of democracy, now we have
misrule; there is no spirit only words, letters and rituals. Whom to
blame, people - ourselves, politicians or destiny/ God. From stone age
level to this level, thousands of years. To rediscover, it may take
decades, if not hundreds. Real freedom while living may be a dream.
Let us celebrate another Independence day.By dreams and Positive
thinking alone if things can be achieved, country will be different
today. But for constructive dreams / positive thinking also, you need
proper atmosphere.

from:  Gopalan
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 09:24 IST

I have only read of Nehru and the Indian Struggle. Many times I have
tried to comprehend in my mind, how these great leaders would speak and
position themselves in hard times like these. This article is
inspirational as well as shuttles between past and present, chin high.
On this day, I too look up with pride and hope that good times are
nearing and the wrong doer's will be lead to shame. 'Jai Hind'.

from:  adithya bharadwaj
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 06:47 IST

The decay of a system is rooted at the very beginning itself. The
orientation of Indian politics towards a family was the first sign of
it, which we all greeted vehemently and still continue to do so.
Remember the drama held in our Parliament when "Soniaji" refused to
assume the PM's chair! Some of them were seen weeping.. some were
hysteric.. And may felt ashamed of having such elected members!
The continuation of Indian Civil Service and Police force who were the
assistants to the colonial rulers was a big mistake. These people are
still under the erstwhile legacy and continue to be arrogant and
dictatorial - completely ignoring that it is independent India now!
Perhaps it is time to have another movement to get really independent.
It is certainly high time to educate patriotism , civic sense ... and
all human qualities. But when we have a Parliament which refuses to
give the details of economic offenders - despite a ruling by the apex
court- much can not be expected. Sad indeed!

from:  Viswanath Pillai
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 06:32 IST

All is not lost. There is space for idealism.

Our daily lives, immersed in providing for our families, while being true to our jobs, can be
absorbing. The research we do, products we sell, services we provide from banks to govt.
offices, food we cultivate, feed a machine that provides jobs to millions. As long as the
economy expands more and more people will benefit. India across the board is spending a
greater share of its income in goods and services, and not food, which means we are much
more than hand to mouth in existence.

So then can we take a day or a few hours, from each month, or week and spend time on a
cause we can support? Tuitions for poor children? Keeping our streets clean? Planting
trees? Protecting reserve forests? With the spread of social media, our facebook pages are replete with positive stories, with organisations we can reach out to. We can be the positive stories.
Idealism can be our reality too.

from:  Anand
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 06:28 IST


from:  Pavan
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 04:33 IST

While not wishing to besmirch the memories of a late leader, it would be
more apt for the Mahatma,Sardar Patel, Ambedkar, Rajaji or Subhash Bose
to deliver the imagined speech. Unfortunately words like Imandari,
siayasat, zimmedari (and other words from the Urdu thesaurus) started to
lose their meanings under Nehru's watch -- some by his own doings, value
systems and arrogance. Perhaps the mention of "personality cult" in the
last para obliquely refers to NaMo, not Rahul or Sonia.

from:  Jay Ravi
Posted on: Aug 15, 2013 at 02:49 IST
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