Happy Independence Day – 2013

Published on: Aug 15 2013 by Sachin
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13 08 15 Independence Day Mahatma Gandhi Quote

Friends,

We got our independence on 15th August 1947 after a lot of sacrifices made by the people of that generation. Today is 15th August 2013, our 66th Independence Day. I take this opportunity to wish all of you a very happy independence day. May this day bring joy and happiness. And more importantly, may this day bring with it lots of hope for a better future for our country, for us and for our future generations.

This blog is about my feelings and emotions on the same day (15th August) but in the year 1997. I was an engineering student. From June 1997 itself, I was seeing a lot of advertisements and banners talking about India’s 50 years of independence. There was so much being talked about the achievements of the country. 15th August 1997 was celebrated with pomp and grandeur. It was probably the time that the economic reforms of 1991 were starting to bear fruits. At that time, I was ignorant of the economic indicators but I could clearly see the rampant corruption prevalent in those years. I used to write poems and short verses (shairis) during my student days. Seeing all the madness around inspired me to write a poem to express my anguish. I was looking for an answer to a question I had ‘Did we as a nation grow enough to celebrate 50 years of Independence with so much pomp and grandeur’?

Recitation of the poem (in Hindi). Please click on the arrow. 


(If you are unable to listen to the poem by clicking on the arrow, click here to directly play the audio stream.)

Now flash forward 16 years from 1997 to 2013. When I read my poem again, I find that the problems I was looking at in 1997 have only increased, not by the rate of inflation but manifold. The rate of rise in corruption beats the rate of inflation hands down. Such is the state of affairs of our nation. Sadly, I am 16 years forward but the question still remains. Have we really made it good for ourselves and our future generations to really feel proud about the achievements of our country? Who can guide us to well-being and prosperity? The answer may not be as obvious if we try to look for it around us. We will only find the answers of these questions within us. The message that I want to pass is that everyone must feel responsible for the happenings around us. Only when we decide to make ourselves the ‘messiah’ that I am searching for in my poem, we will start seeing improvements. The answers to the questions that bother us about our nation really lie within us and our readiness to take on the battlefield for the beautiful nation we must offer our future generations. Else we will be leaving them a country that is worse than what we got from our earlier generations. We owe this resolution to the future generations of our country.

13 08 15 Independence Day Tri-color Significance

The poem is written in Hindi. I have provided a recitation and a transcript of it in English. I have also made an attempt to translate it into English without losing any of the contextual significance. If anyone of you can translate it better, please write to me and I will make changes.

Transcript –

TALAASH (The Search)

Kaise Jee Rahe Hai Hum,
Watan Ka Kya Haal Hua Hai,
Badh Rahi Hai Yaha RishwatKhori,
Neta Har Maalamaal Hua Hai. (1) 

Neta Ko Parwah Hi Nahi,
Awaam Kaise Jee Rahi Hai,
Yeh Ab Ke Baar Ki Baat Nahin,
Aisa Toh Saalosaal Hua Hai. (2) 

Azaadi Ke Pachaas Saalo Me,
Sirf Azaadi Ka Jashan Manaya Hai,
Bahut Unnati Ki Hai Watan Ne,
Yehi Sochke Man Ko Behlaya Hai. (3) 

Kaun Hai Jo Watan Ke Liye Jee Raha Hai,
Kisne Apne Khoon Ko Jalaaya Hai,
Ek Insaan Kya Kar Sakta Hai,
Isi Sawaal Se Antarmann Ko Sulaya Hai. (4) 

Zaroorat Hai Ek Masihe Ki,
Jo Bhatkon Ko Raah Dikhayega,
Khud Ko Kabra Me Dafnakar,
Murda Lashon Ko Firse Jagayega. (5) 

Is Mode Se Watan Ko Jo Sawaar Sakega,
Aise Masihe Ki Talaash Hai Mujhe,
Kahin Na Kahin Who Bana Hi Hoga,
Jis Masihe Ki Aas Hai Mujhe,
Kahin Na Kahin Who Bana Hi Hoga,
Jis Masihe Ki Aas Hai Mujhe. (6)

Translation

(1) What is the state of affairs of our nation? Are we indeed living a meaningful life? The corruption is so rampant. Almost every other politician is getting richer and wealthier by each passing day.

(2) The politicians do not care for the welfare of the citizens of the country. And this is not a recent phenomenon. This has been happening since years now.

(3) In the fifty years of our independence, we have only superficially celebrated being independent. We have consoled ourselves with the thought that our nation has truly grown and prospered.

(4) Is there anyone who is doing something for the welfare of the country and the citizens? Is there anyone who is ready to sacrifice his blood for the country? “How can one person change the (political) system?” This is the question each one of us poses to put our souls to sleep.

(5) In this age, we need a savior (messiah) who will guide the people; who have forgotten the right path (of life). The person will have to go through sacrifices to get the message across to the nation.

(6) I am looking out for such a messiah who will save the nation from the problems being faced. And I certainly believe that the messiah I am looking for is already born and existing in this world.

13 08 15 Saluting the Indian Flag

Final Thought – The messiah I am referring to in my poem as the savior is none other but our own self. Only if we awaken our souls and get our minds to think in the right direction, we will be able to bring about the change we wish to see for our nation. And really, we got a beautiful country from our earlier generations that allowed us to go for our dreams and aspirations. Leaving behind a country that offers enough dreams and hope for the next generation is our moral obligation to the young and yet to be born generation of India. We owe it to them.

Wish all the citizens of my country a very happy (and thought provoking) Independence Day.

— Sachin

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