As we celebrate the 67th anniversary of adopting the Constitution of India, it is time to reflect and ask ourselves whether we have internalized the ideals of liberty, equality and justice that serve as the bedrock of our nation?
26 January was proclaimed as Republic Day because it was on this day in 1930 that the declaration of complete independence (Purna Swaraj) was made the Indian National Congress. Dominion status, being offered by the British rulers, was rejected.
Have we been true to the spirit of the republic, as enshrined in our constitution? Have we honoured the sacrifice of our freedom fighters? Or have we taken this legacy for granted and pursued individual gain at the cost of our nation?
The sad truth is that real independence has eluded us. We may be politically free but are still shackled by attitudes and beliefs that hinder our progress. This freedom cannot be given; it is up to each one of us to fight for it.
For starters, we must change our mindset from that of a follower of western thought to one of original thinking. We need self-belief, the confidence that we can lead the world. But to do so, we must fight inefficiency and laziness. We must discipline ourselves to be industrious. Only then can we unleash the potential of a young and vibrant India.
Failing which, the sacrifices made by our forefathers will have been in vain. And we will be doomed to be a country of also rans. Now’s the time to put thought into action!
Do watch the video of my address to the engineering students at Dharamsinh Desai University at Nadiad, Gujarat, encouraging them to embrace a strong work ethic and believe in themselves.