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Why do we celebrate Independence day?
Independence day is celebrated as our national festival on 15th August every year. It is the most important day for every Indian as India got independence from the British rule who treated our people as slaves. After a long struggle by our freedom fighters(such as Mahatma Gandhi, Jawahar Lal Nehru, Bhagat Singh, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, Chandra Shekhar Azad, Moulana Abul Kalam Azad, Sukhdev, Rajguru, Balgangadhar Tilak, etc.) and many other countrymen, we got our freedom.
Our freedom struggle:
Over the history, India has several invasions. During the 17th century, Britishers visited India for trading with the Mughal Emperor. After the fall of Mughal emperor, the Britishers gained support from the local rulers by offering them some offers. They began involving in the Indian affairs by mid of 18th century. In 1757, After the victory of British in the Battle of Plassey, the rule of East India Company have started. Slowly they took control over a large part of our country. They established their offices throughout the country and started ruling. British ruled India for over 200 years. Their rule damaged cultural, social, economical and political life of Indians.
Kingdoms were forcefully occupied and kings were punished for no reason. Farmers and small traders were imposed heavy taxes. They have treated our people as slaves and punished cruelly for simple things. People could not tolerate this. From then people became strong and started demanding self ruling.
So, In 1857, a great revolution started against the British rule by the people of India. This Rebellion of 1857 is India's first fight for our Freedom which is called as the Revolt of 1857.
Within a year, after the revolt of 1857, the East India Company has come to an end and many new policies have been started by the British government. Some of the reformists like Raja Rammohan Roy, Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar, Bankim Chandra were seen fighting against the british rule.
Many groups emerged throughout India against the British rule for the freedom. One among them was the Indian National Congress Party. Its main aim was to put forward the views of middle class citizens.
Partition of West Bengal took place in 1905. They even shifted the capital of the country from calcutta to Delhi. The Britishers want to follow divide and rule policy. Britisher passed several reforms like "Morley-Minto" reform which aimed at creating differences between the Hindus and Muslims. After that Jallianwala Massacre took place in 1919 in Punjab. Many people were died in this Massacre.
Mahatma Gandhi came back to India after the first world war and observed the situation in our country. Mahatma Gandhi wanted to fight with non violence and truth. So he started "Satyagraha movement". The person who practices satyagraha is called a Satyagrahi. After that, in 1920, Mahatma Gandhi started the Non-Cooperation Movement. Main aim of Non-Cooperation movement is that, surrendering the titles, honours and resigning the posts in local bodies, refusing the foreign goods, withdrawing children from the schools and colleges controlled by the government, refusing the recruitment of military and other services, etc. This movement continued till 1922. Then the Simon Commission was sent by the Britishers to India to study constitutional reforms and make recommendations to the government. No single Indian was included in this, which was an insult to Indians. So the Congress party decided to boycott Simon commission. All over the country people started chanting the slogan "Simon Go Back". To suppress this movement, police started lathi charges.
People were charged heavy taxes. Salt Act was passed by the British government. So, Mahatma Gandhi started Dandi March for the unjust laws of the British government from Sabarmati Ashram to Dandi. He launched Civil Disobedience Movement formally whose main objective was to break the unjust laws such as Salt Law.
On 8th August 1942, Quit India Movement was launched by Mahatma Gandhi with the slogan “Do or Die”. Though our Leaders are lathi charged and arrested many times, they did not stop their fight against the British for our Independence till 1947.
We fought with non-violence for our freedom. But some of our Leaders like Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose followed Violence with the slogan “Give me blood and I will give you freedom”.
Millions of people lost their lives for our freedom. At last We got our freedom (or self rule) after 200 years of British rule on 15th August 1947. So we call this day as our “Independence Day”
So we must always remember our freedom fighters who have struggled hard and sacrificed their lives for our freedom which made our country as a Democratic country. Without their struggle, our lives could not be as easy as now. So we must always remember our freedom fighters.
Independence day celebrations:
We celebrate Independence day as our national festival. Every year on August 15th, we celebrate Independence day by hoisting our National Flag, Singing our National Anthem and patriotic songs.
In New Delhi: On this day, our Prime Minister hoist our tricolor national flag at the Red Fort in New Delhi which is followed by singing the national anthem "Jana gana mana" and gun salute. Then our Prime Minister addresses the nation remembering our freedom fighters and their struggle. This is followed by March-past and tableaus representing the religious and cultural heritage.
In schools, colleges and private offices, celebrations are started with flag hoisting followed by singing the national anthem and patriotic songs. Speech on our freedom struggle will be given by the chief guest, which is then followed by Cultural activities and competitions. In schools, Children participate with enthusiasm in the Independence Day celebrations, by dressing up as our freedom fighters. After these events sweets were distributed as a part of celebration.
We can even find people in the streets celebrating Independence day by wishing each other hoisting our national flag, singing our national anthem and buying our national flag. We can find people wearing saffron, white or green colour clothes, tricolour wristbands, etc. which shows the feeling of patriotism.
Festivals play a significant role in our day to day lives. We worship different Gods and accordingly there are different festivals that we celebrate to mark the occasion. Festivals provide us with an opportunity to spend quality time with our family, friends and relatives. There are so many rituals attached to the festivals and this makes the entire concept of celebration of festivals even more colorful & exciting.
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