The year 2017 marks the 70th Independence day of India. Independence Day is a celebration of freedom. Freedom of speech, expression, religion and much more which we are using and misusing today is the result of the struggle and sacrifices of our freedom fighters. Recently during a conversation with my cousins, I wondered why 15th August 1947 is celebrated and not any other day in the year. I was surprised to read the facts behind our dated celebration of freedom.
The Labour Party (Britain) in its election manifesto promised to grant independence to English colonies including India. It won 1945 election after World War II, taking over a financially weak country (Britain) and fulfilled its promise of Independence to India.
August 15th, 1947:
- Lord Mount Batten was appointed to administer power transfer by 1948. Jinnah’s demand of separate nation accelerated issues. Transfer of power preponed to 1947.
- It was wholly last Viceroy’s decision of declaring freedom to India on August 15. This date is believed to be very lucky for him because Japan surrendered before him during World War II on the same date. So his lucky day struck our independence day.
The first speech in Independent India is given by Jawahar Lal Nehru. In the speech, ‘Tryst with Destiny’, he said and I quote:
“At the stroke of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will awake to life and freedom.”
No! There is no hidden philosophical meaning behind this. He literally meant, at the stroke of midnight hour because of astrological reasons.
According to astrological calculations August 15, 1947 is treated to an unholy day which brings bad fortune. Indian astrologers denied announcing this day as Independence Day and Lord Mount Batten was not ready to change the day because it was lucky for him.
There is a fight for Independence and also a fight to announce Independence. In between all disputes solution popped in differences. I heard difference divide and for the first time differences united.
According to English calendar, day changes when clock strikes 12 at midnight; and in Indian calendar day does not change till sun rise. So to satisfy sentiments of each group 12 A.M is decided as a time of independence.
In the happiness of birth of a nation, holy Shankha was blown immediately after Nehru’s speech, i.e. 12 A.M. Consequently, India received Independence at midnight.
Finally, this is the history behind the Independence day date and time. Interesting right! Do let us know your views in the comments section below: