Tomorrow will be the 70th Independence Day of India. The entire country will celebrate the day. Many people sacrificed their lives for the precious freedom. The struggle for freedom making the day is most eventful day in Indian history. Today let us discuss some interesting facts about the Indian Independence and the date 15th August.
India unofficially got its Independence on 18th July 1947 then why we celebrate the Independence Day on 15th August!
Actually, it was the last Viceroy of India, Lord Mountbatten’s decision because the date “15th August” was very lucky for his career. At the time of World War II, the Japanese Army had surrendered before him (he was the commander of the allied forces) on that very day 15th August 1945.
When the date was decided there was an outrage among the astrologers across the country because according to the astrological calculations 15th August was considered to be an unholy and unfortunate date. But Lord Mountbatten was adamant on 15th August. So the astrologers suggested the midnight between August 14 and 15 as the day according to the English starts at 12 AM but according to the Hindu calendar starts at sunrise.
Where was our National Flag first unfurled?
Our first National Flag was first unfurled at the Parsee Bagan Square in Calcutta on August 7, 1906, and the flag had horizontal stripes of red, yellow and green. The red strip at the top had eight white lotuses embossed on it in a row. The green strip had a white sun on the left and a white crescent and a star on the right.
Only one licensed flag production!
India is a huge nation but only Khadi Development and Village Industries Commission is authorised for making the flag of India. The Karnataka Khadi Gramodyog Samyukta Sangha in Dharwad is the only maker of our glorious flag. Earlier, the flags were made with Jayadhar, a popular variety of cotton which grown in Karnataka. But now it has started using khadi.
The design of the present flag
Pingali Venkayya at Bezwada first designed the present national flag in 1921. Then it had red, green and white stripes. The red and green colour stood for the two main communities of India while the white symbolised the rest of them. In the centre, it had a spinning wheel which has now replaced by the Ashoka Chakra and the red strip has been replaced by the saffron strip.
India’s freedom and the partition
The partition plan was announced on June 3, 1947, but it was implemented on 14th August. On that same day a new nation Pakistan was established and on the next day, India got its independence. This partition was the black chapter of Indian history and it had cost many lives. Nearly 3.5 million Hindus and Sikhs migrated from Pakistan to India and almost 5 million Muslims from India to Pakistan.
No official National Anthem
At the time of its independence, the country had no official national anthem. Jana Gana Mana was originally written in 1911 penned by Rabindranath Tagore and was composed in Bengali. The song was first sung on the second day of the annual conference of the Indian National Congress in Calcutta on December 27, 1911. At the knock of midnight on August 14, 1947, the historic session of the Indian Constituent Assembly opened with Vande Mataram and closed with Jana Gana Mana.
During the General Assembly of the United Nations in New York in 1947, a recording of the song was played by the orchestra in front of the world gathering and it received wide applause. Finally, the Constituent Assembly formed a committee to select the National Anthem. On 24th January 1950, President Rajendra Prasad officially declared Jana Gana Mana the National Anthem and Vande Mataram as the National Song.
Other countries share their independence with India
North Korea, South Korea, Bahrain and Republic of the Congo share their independence with India. The day also commemorated the second anniversary of Japan’s surrender to the Allied Forces.
Goa wasn’t a part of India after the independence
Even after the independence, Portugal continued their claim on Goa. Portugal amended its constitution and declared Goa a Portuguese state. As a result, Portuguese troops started their firing at Indian steamers and fishing boats. India sent their Army to free the region. Within three days, India liberated Goa. Finally, Goa officially became a part of India on December 19, 1961.
Mahatma Gandhi did not participate in the celebrations
The Father of the Nation was not present in the celebrations in Delhi. The people were obviously happy for the freedom but at the same time the whole nation was burning of communal fire and partition and the most affected area was Bengal. Gandhiji received many requests from people of Hindu and Muslim because both communities believed his presence would stop the killing. Mahatma Gandhi went to Bengal did fast, offered prayers for the entire day and saved thousands of lives.
Gandhiji wanted to disband the Congress
Immediately after the independence, Mahatma Gandhi wanted to dissolve the Indian National Congress. The reason was the party was organised to fight for freedom. So after getting freedom, there was no meaning in continuing the organisation. Gandhiji thought in an independent state there was no need for the INC instead, Gandhiji wanted other arrangements. He drafted this resolution for Congress on the eve of his assassination.
560 states joined the Indian union
After the independence, 560 princely states joined the Indian union and Hyderabad and Junagadh was seized by the Indian Army.
The Boundary Commission formed the border
The border between India and Pakistan was formed by the Boundary Commission, a body appointed by Lord Mountbatten. A British lawyer Sir Cyril Radcliffe headed the commission.
Jawaharlal Nehru and his Nehru Jacket
The country’s first Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru was considered as a global style icon. His Nehru Jacket became globally famous and he even featured in the Vogue magazine.
Hindi is not the national language of India
As stated by the article 343 of the Indian Constitution, Hindi is not the national language of the country rather it is India’s official language.
Every year we celebrate the day and remember the freedom fighters and their struggle. It is because of them we got the right to say in the government. Over the last 70 years, our country has faced many negative phases which are not possible to change now but the future is in our hands. Freedom doesn’t mean only freedom from the British; it means freedom from the poverty, corruption, unemployment and freedom for the women. Let us ensure we will make India a better place for the future generation.
Happy Independence Day.