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AAZADI KA AMRIT MAHOTSAV
Author: Anchal Verma, I year of B.A.,LL.B. from University of Lucknow, Faculty of Law
We, as an Indian feel overwhelmed with extreme joy and excitement on hearing the word ‘azadi’. A word which was once merely a dream to achieve is now at the doorstep of its Diamond anniversary. It marks a moment to cherish and admire our achievements and glories as we celebrate the ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav' on 15th August, 2022. In fact, it is an attempt by Government of India to celebrate, cherish and honour 75th years of independence and the magnificent last of its citizens, culture and achievements. Commencing 75 weeks ahead of its 75th year of independence, this mahotsava will last till 15th August, 2023.
It aims at encouraging the youth of the nation to come up with their ideas and to pave the way forward for the Independent India; a nation independent in its actions, policies and most significantly, a nation which considers people as its sovereign. The Mahotsav launched with an objective of creating a vision for the country in 2047 sustains on the basis of its pillars of struggle for independence, ideas and achievements, actions and resolutions of 75 years. These pillars are meant to make the younger generation aware of the history and struggle for independence. As our honourable Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Damodardas Modi, has aptly said, “ The Azadi Amrit Mahotsav means elixir of energy of independence; elixir of inspirations of the warriors of freedom struggle; elixir of new ideas and pledges; and elixir of Aatmanirbharta. Therefore, this Mahotsav is a festival of awakening of the nation; festival of fulfilling the dream of good governance; and the festival of global peace and development." Indeed, it is a tribute to the warriors of the freedom struggles, to those who renered their services for the development of the nation and are still working for the upliftment of its citizens.
Indians are fortunate enough to witnesses the completion of 75 years of their Independence but certain questions still remain unanswered; Are we really entering in the amrit kaal ? The question of poors dying of starvation, the suffering of people in annually flooded areas, the deteriorating condition of press freedom raises a question before every Indian to ponder over the celebration of this Amrit Mahotsava. Will this celebration be worth remembering if one segment of the country feels alienated or goes to bed with an empty stomach. In the 2021, in Global Hunger Index, India ranked 101st out of the 116 countries with a score of 27.5, indicating the level of hunger that is serious. The wave of Covid-19 has forced many to shift to the below poverty line section. This occurred despite government’s attempt to provide every poor household with the free ration throughout the pandemic. The situation would have been even more horrific in absence of such initiatives.
The situation seems to be more tense on observing the report ‘Democracy under Seige’ by the Freedom House. As per this report, India's status as a free country has changed to "partly free". It states that that there has been growing political influence on the social activists and press media. The incidents of CAA protest and migration due to sudden lockdown was violative of citizen’s right. Moreover, government’s ignorant response towards such issues not only questions the policies of the government but also makes us contemplate the extent of democratically elected government’s accountability.
‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ is an another campaign under the celebration of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to encourage people to bring the Tiranga home and to hoist it to mark the 75th year of India’s independence. No doubt, our national flag means a lot to every Indian Citizen. Pinning a Tiranga at homes, is indeed a symbolic representation of our personal connection, sentiments and commitment towards the task of nation building. It may even denote the idea of ‘Unity in Diversity’ that besides being from different religion, caste, class and states we as a citizen stand united for the national cause. We may have different views, ideologies and attitudes towards an issue but when it comes to the interest of nation, we stand united as an Indian besides our varied identities. But unfortunately, the reality stands far away from these illusions. Can merely pinning our national flag at our homes be the guarantor of our patriotism. If this applies, many deserving people would be devoid of the title of being patriotic. Where and how a daily wage earner will pin the flag who spends his nights on footpath, who finds it difficult to meet his both ends and for whom to have a cloth on his body is a blessing.
Also, on this special occasion of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, it would be injustice if one the strongest pillar of the society – women, remain untouched. They have built up a world for themselves. None of the field remained untouched by them. However, there body also remains easily accessible to all. Even today the cases of rapes and violence against women have surged up. This makes us ponder over the way forward for them.
Observing this Mahotsava merely as celebration and remembrance of the valour and valiance is not enough. Responsibility accompanies the Maturity. Since India will complete its 75 years of Independence on 15th August, 2022, it reaches its maturity age. It becomes its responsibility to maintain the democratic structure within and outside country on international forum and increase the extent of its accountability. The river of amrit is worth praising if it remains accessible to all. No one should be deprived of it. Also, we can can not conclude something as amrit by the time natural death becomes the only reason of human's death. Therefore, attempts should be made so that Amrit Kaal does not witnesses starvation. The communal hatred needed to be clamped upon else it may ruin the country from within. Hope that equally accessible Amrit Dhara will flow throughout the country and all citizens will take a deep bath in it and feel relaxed. Let’s hope for the positive…. What ends as achievement commences from a mere hope…!
1. Government of India, Ministry of Culture, https://amritmahotsav.nic.in/
2. Drishti IAS Blog, https://www.drishtiias.com/blog/azadi%20ka%20amrit%20mahotsav
3. Global Hunger Index, https://www.globalhungerindex.org/india.html
4. BBC NEWS, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-india-56249596
5. Government of India, Ministry of Culture, https://amritmahotsav.nic.in/har-ghar-tiranga.htm