The year 2021 marks the 75th Independence Day of India. That is, indeed, a proud moment for us that we, as the responsible citizens of the country, have tried our best to preserve and protect the freedom that was earned by our revered freedom fighters. We as a country do not realize that we have lived 75 years of independence, we are still young and strong. India is a youth nation, with immense energy and potential. From winning the gold medal at Olympic Tokyo 2020 to embracing newer methods of digitalization, we never hesitate to adopt changes, which are good for our future life.
Source – India.com
A discussion about our independence cannot be considered complete without acknowledging the efforts of our freedom fighters. It was the result of a long-drawn struggle that we received what was due to us for centuries – our independence from our colonizers. The freedom struggle had united the people of India in the name of swaraj. People were united under strong leadership, which played a very important role, in shaping the freedom struggle and the subsequent discourse. We cannot ever sufficiently acknowledge or praise the efforts of all of the people who in some way or the other way have participated in the struggle for self-determination.
But the struggle did not only result in providing us with our long-awaited freedom, it also resulted in the horrors of the division of the subcontinent into different nations. There was a joy of achieving freedom but on the other hand, there were people who were abandoned and had nowhere to go. And these were the horrors of the Partition of India. It is estimated that about 75000 to 100000 women were abducted, raped, and assaulted during the partition. This is so horrific to even imagine in light of what we are recently witnessing in Afghanistan.
Other than atrocities on women and children, people have reported an increase in communal violence during that time. The division of the country was done based on religion, so the communities who had existed peacefully for centuries suddenly started to view each other as enemies. People were displaced from their native places and had to start a new life altogether, which was in itself a struggle. Nobody who has suffered or witnessed the atrocities of Partition ever wants to commemorate or reiterate the horrors, it is still embedded as a bad memory in all of our minds.
Source – Boldsky.com
Amidst the celebrations of Independence Day, our honorable Prime Minister declared 14th August as ‘Partition Horrors Remembrance Day’. This was done in the memory of the people who were displaced, assaulted, and were adversely affected during the times of Partition of India. The Honorable Prime Minister also mentioned that “may this day keep reminding us of the need to remove the poison of social divisions, disharmony and further strengthen the spirit of oneness, social harmony, and human empowerment.” This was done to make us realize the serious negative effects of social divisions and lack of humanity and unity in the country.
But this decision was not welcomed by some people in the country. Some people in the country felt that it is important not to forget the horrors of the partition and one must learn important lessons from them but we should not use history as a tool to settle scores today and take revenge. Others point out how this move can affect the psyche of people. The younger generation of the families who were affected would again feel threatened(psychologically) by such discussions and memories. As their ancestors tried to move on and start a new life.
Source – Feminism in India
A section of society believes that it is important to acknowledge the innocent people who had lost almost everything during those times. Because that had a negative impact on their life, minds and their social life. It does not mark some kind of celebration but the realization of the fact that we, as the people of India should always pledge to stay united and no external force should not succeed in breaking us apart. We must promise ourselves that we would always stay together and combat the differences which divide us.
Written by- Gargi Singh
Edited by- Sanjana Dey