As the zeal and fervour is all set for hosting the Tricolour, the 72nd Independence day is yet again in front of us. And like each passing year should we continue with the routine of either spending it as a holiday or accomplishing the duty of reaching our schools, offices or perhaps just watch the Parade at DD National? Celebrating this day invokes a sense of patriotism but have we really taken out time to know the depth or reality of this day after 72 years? Routine life can lead us to take for granted the freedom that we have been blessed with. So today, let me give you different perspectives on what this day means to different people I interacted with.
With my daily cup of tea and a breakfast of knowledgeable thoughts given by my Grandpa, I happened to ask him the questions from the closet of my mind. Inquisitive about what independence day now means to him, I was answered with the most amazing words by him. After so many years of Indian struggle, he connected it with his parental struggle, in raising his children, to using his limited resources and unlimited love to raise his children. To him, Independence day means one more day to celebrate his existence in an independent country like India without any bondage to his requirements and living conditions.
With his vision about being grateful for having a life of freedom, I came across my little neighbour who was all dressed up in an orange and green suit, with the tricolour in those tiny hands, this day meant to her nothing less than a grand celebration of singing the Patriotic song and letting go of some balloons in the air. Little does she know how with the passing years, she just might come to understand the depth behind the words she is singing!
In the park adjoining my house, I often come across a group of 8-10 gentlemen who are in their sixties. And out of sheer curiosity, I just happened to again put forward this very question to them. To my surprise, the amount of energy they instilled in me with their opinion just took me aback. For them, this day meant ‘spreading the value of good health and yoga’, as they had a plan to create awareness about the same in the neighbourhood!
And as I wandered more in search of another answer to my question, I got to thinking. What does this day mean to me? Does its essence lie in the freedom I exercise while making the choices I am able to make as an elder daughter, the freedom to ‘free myself from the negatives of life’ and the freedom to be a part of a great city like Chandigarh? This and much more went through my mind as the 15th of August drew closer!
Well, I did realize something. Everyone in the entire Tricity, even the entire country have their own meaning attached to this day. Nevertheless, not a single heart should forget the sacrifice each soldier makes each day at the border and the struggle every martyr laid to make India an independent country. But at the same time, these 72 years should be an opportunity to reflect on our daily life and not just a mere day to forward patriotic pictures on Whatsapp, Facebook and other social media.
As we celebrate the 72nd Independence day, it’s necessary we come up with our own meaning of freedom! And while we are at it, why not be thankful for the freedom we do enjoy? Here’s wishing you a Happy Independence Day!