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At 70, India exudes youthful exuberance

Issue 352 August 15, 2016

As India marks its 70th Independence Day, millions of Indians will celebrate the event, remembering those who fought for the country’s freedom in the past century.

Indians born in India will recall the festivities that they would have attended as students and adults, and try to instil pride among their children and grandchildren.

Although it is more than seven decades since India became a free country with its own Constitution, Legislatures and Judiciary, the tumultuous years of the Freedom Movement and the sacrifices of thousands of people suffering foreign rule are still recalled at festivities held at educational institutions and other venues in India and overseas. In New Zealand, the Indian High Commission will host a flag-hoisting ceremony at the official residence of Indian High Commissioner in Lower Hutt followed by a programme of speeches and cultural performances in the evening at the Wellington Indian Association. Similar events will be organised by the Auckland Indian Association in Auckland and others elsewhere in New Zealand.

Serious challenges

Undoubtedly, India faces serious challenges, some of them threatening political and economic balance. The country has shown its resilience in overcoming these over the years. But the most important and most difficult challenge is to bring about a shift in the mindset on social issues. The ‘Common Minimum Programme’ that was mooted in the 1980s needs a revisit to revitalise the societal fabric and make it reflect the basic characteristic of India as a tolerant, secular and developing country.

India has always followed the path of ‘Ahimsa’ or Non-Violence and it has never been an aggressive country. On the contrary, it has been a victim of infiltration and unlawful occupation by its neighbours.

India has been a victim of terrorist attacks long before 9/11 but unlike some others, it did not wreak vengeance on perpetrators. Its nuclear programme is based on self-defence and primarily for peaceful purposes such as power generation and space exploration.

Global Player

Prime Minister Narendra Modi stands for a New India which reaches out to countries and people in a spirit of cooperation for universal benefit. Since taking oath of office on May 26, 2016, he has visited almost 50 countries, establishing a personal rapport with world leaders. His overseas trips have had three major objectives, namely, to attract Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), engaging the 20 million strong Indian Diaspora and seeking India’s greater participation in regional and international forums as a Member.

Mr Modi is a great orator, capable of articulating on issues with conviction. His speeches in parliaments of various countries, conferences, summits and the United Nations have been a source of inspiration.

Genuine Peace

Speaking at the UN General Assembly on September 25, 2015, he called for unified work towards ‘genuine peace.’

“No one country or group of countries can determine the course of this world. There has to be a genuine international partnership. This is not just a moral position, but a practical reality. We need a genuine dialogue and engagement between countries. Our efforts must begin here – in the United Nations. We must reform the United Nations,” he said.

India has since long called for combined efforts to combat terrorism, strike at the roots of terrorists and bring to justice those supporting and sheltering terrorists.

Mr Modi asked the members of the UN to adopt the ‘Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism,’ and become partners in establishing peace, stability and order in the outer space and cyber space.

“Globalisation has created new poles of growth; new industries; and new source of employment. At the same time, billions live on the edge of poverty and want; countries that are barely able to survive a global economic storm. There has never been a time when it has seemed more possible than now to change this state of affairs,” he said.

Marching towards its chosen destiny, India disparately needs its sons and daughters to promote the ideals of their forefathers, freedom fighters and leaders to make it even a greater nation.

The country needs men and women who would not just do lip service but contribute towards its continued progress and prosperity.

Indian Newslink is published by Indian Newslink Limited from its offices located at Level 1, Number 166, Harris Road, East Tamaki, Auckland 2013 and printed at Horton Media Limited, Auckland. All material appearing here and on our web editions are the copyright of Indian Newslink and reproduction in full or part in any medium is prohibited. Indian Newslink and its management and staff do not accept any responsibility for the claims made in advertisements.

Managing Director & Publisher: Jacob Mannothra; Editor & General Manager: Venkat Raman; Production Manager: Mahes Perera; Graphic Designer: Shine Kumar

Phone: (09) 5336377 Email: info@indiannewslink.co.nz

Websites: www.indiannewslink.co.nz; www.inliba.com; www.inlisa.com

 

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