“At the stroke of midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom.” This was the line of the speech ‘tryst and destiny’ that was delivered by Pandit Jawarharlal Nehru at midnight which marked the freedom of India. But the only question that still strikes my mind after the 70 years of freedom is, are we free? Can we really call ourselves as ‘free Indians’? In an obvious way, yes. But if we analyse it further my response will be, no. Do we take “independence” as simply independence from Britishers? If yes, then surely we have become independent from British rule. In fact that’s the reason “Independence day” is commemorated for – to mark the day we got independence from Britishers, and to remember the martyrdom of our courageous freedom fighters.
The part of India which makes me question is, where a farmers child still goes to his sleep without even a piece of grain whereas his father is the one who fills the stomach of millions in Indians, where people still live on the filth of others on the streets, where there are more than half living on Rs. where still a girl longs for her education and schooling and envy’s her brother for getting the same, where the children fantasize of how a school is, where a mother is still afraid to give birth to her princess, and where justice is defined by the heaviness in the pocket whereas in the truth. This is what makes me question on the freedom.
Yes, every country has it’s problem and none is perfect but the citizens of it have worked really hard towards achieving all these goals. The citizens of India are very lazy to change themselves, let it be the country. We are a country where the PM needs to start a cleanliness drive across the nation to keep our surroundings clean, where the sessions of Parliament are washed away with trivial issues of blame games to prove the self-worth by the honorary parliamentarians and some are just slept over. A country where the rape victim is blamed for the rape rather than the assailant. We are the people of a nation where on one hand “Gau hamari mata hai” (no offense to the religion) but “biwi abhi bhi juti hai”. A country where giving donations in institutions for our child’s admission or bribing is okay, but giving it to the poor is not under the excuse that he’s physically good and can earn on his own.
This is country full of hypocrisy and stereotypes, which can not be changed. But with a collective effort maybe the change at least comes in progress. Let us collectively take this responsibility of being truly free – by realizing that as we demand our rights, in the same way, we need to fulfill our duties too. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel once said – “Every citizen of India must remember that he is an Indian and he has every right in this country but with certain duties.” Let us try to get free this Independence Day instead of getting lost in the murky odour of hypocrisy, injustice and evils that cripple the society. It is not just a holiday or a day for great freedom sales but more than that.