India will celebrate its 70th Independence Day in 2016. The occasion is to remember the uphill battle of the enslaved India against the East India company. Although many people who have experienced the British rule era have succumbed to natural death, one can browse through a list of books and movies based on that era in order to get a good understanding of the hard fought battle.

Celebrate Independence

Come 15th August morning, everyone in this secular India will proactively wear tricolor, be it on their clothing, vehicles, social media display pictures, oil paint faces, etc. TV channel play movies based on one of the many army battles fought against Britishers and post-British rule against our neighbours. Patriotic songs at high decibels are on the playlist of every society’s Independence Day cultural function. If not all, most of us have done exactly what has been written above for the past 69 years now. We feel grateful for the freedom at our disposal which was bartered exchanged for the blood of our ancestors. Oaths are taken to never litter the streets and become a responsible citizen overall henceforth.

But what actually transpires is unfortunate and disappointing. As often described as a sodawater effect, our patriotism diminishes even before the end of 24 hours of the 15th August. This is evident as from what is found lying everywhere around the cities stomped and soiled on 15th August’s evening. Those tricolor flags which were sold on every India street on 14th of August are once again found on the same streets, abused and crumpled by the feet of the same folks who held it high that very morning.

The ones who claim to be patriotic out there need to realise, it is not about who ‘seems’ to be the most patriotic of all on Independence Day, it is about who is patriotic on days beyond this one day. India is unable to benefit from your purchase of a tricolored kurtas or scarfs which say ‘I love my India’. Your social media updates involving photos of Siachen soldiers of India in sub-zero degree temperatures will not give them any advantage over the enemies.

When you play ‘Vande Mataram’ by A.R. Rehman and ‘Ae Mere Watan Ke Logo’ by Lata Mangeshkar on your audio system, it may give you a temporary patriotic high which won’t last longer than the duration of the song. There’s dire need to address this issue before it turns into a chronic irreversible habit.

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Image Source: https://www.hindujagruti.org/national-issue/respect-flag/prevent-insult-abuse-national-flag

What must be done ? Even if one of the following, simple to implement habits are adopted, you cannot have celebrated this historic day in a better way.

  • Stop throwing anything anywhere except dustbins. Zero Littering
  • Ensure our Tricolor Flags are not discarded carelessly.
  • Show gratitude by saluting an Army personnel wherever whenever you spot one.
  • Help a Needy whenever however possible as per your capacity.
  • Keep on grasping more about our Freedom fight sagas.

Practice these habits 365 days every year to earn the prefix ‘Patriotic’, for real. Patriotism is a feeling which one experiences in general or doesn’t. When patriotism awakens at the dawn of 15th August every year goes to sleep by its dawn, all it amounts to is repercussions and nothing more than that.

In short, India needs you to become a better version of itself. It’s time to redefine patriotism, the way it should have been in the first place. Once this is accomplished, we all can roar in unison just like our patriotic hero Sunny Deol in the movie ‘Gadar’,
“Mera Hindustan Zindabaad Tha, Zindabaad Hai Aur Zindabaad Rahega !”

…. Vande Mataram ….

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