Republic Day - What Does It Mean?

A chorus of young kids singing our national anthem woke me up this morning. It didn't take much time out of my early moments of the day for me to realize that it was the republic day flag hoisting being performed out a few yards from my bedroom window. The 26th of January and 15th of August are the two days that are pretty close to me. They remind me of my novice days as one of the school going lads standing in a queue on the school playground in neat, pressed white uniforms waiting for the chocolates to be distributed. India is our country and all Indians are our brothers and sisters were what we pledged immediately after our school prayer. We said it and we did it all for the sake of a mandate. Today, after a long unexpected midnight support call from the client, all that matters is that it is a holiday. The Republic day has always gifted us - with sweets to the kids and a lazy holiday for working professionals, hasn't it? Sad and true.

More than six decades after independence, seems to be an ample time in the life of young India. Lives have changed and continue to change. Our schedules are busier in the attempts to sustain our own self. This is the time when things are getting real difficult and the situation is getting only worse with the passage of time. The lessons of fraternity and brotherhood have been long forgotten into the pages of the history of the freedom struggle. In a time when it is difficult to protect our own families from getting scattered, how easy is it to think about the country?

Patriotism has gained a new meaning and a newer way of expression. It is exhibited by swaying tricolor flags on the vehicles and motor bikes on the republic and independence days, which is over a day getting replaced by the flags of political parties. It is all about hoisting, saluting and wearing the paper-made tricolor on the national days and later disposing it off recklessly among the other bits of paper. It is about bearing the inconvenience of terrorist attacks on our cities, feeling and seeing the blood of our neighbors spilled around and hoping that things will be fine the next day. It is about watching the political scandals over the news channels and taking it for granted as politics. It is about finding it worthless to cast our votes on the Election Day. It is about considering it as a part of process to bribe the government official in order to get a timely delivery of your marriage certificate. It is about finding it a nuisance to stand up for the national anthem after buying an expensive multiplex movie ticket for the flick you were long trying to catch up with. It is about singing the national song without really understanding the meaning of it.

Today we are celebrating the 61st Republic Day of India, the day when India wrote and implemented its constitution. It is time we ask a small question to ourselves as to what significance it really has had within our lives. In this age where the creamy layered are more passionate about foreign citizenships, whereas the poor is endlessly battling and blaming the circumstances, is it fine to say that we are truly republic?


  1. a gr8 question raised...its time our country becomes a little more possessive about the national heritage...and that can come with a few initiatives by the people and govt together....
    Lets hope things change for the good


  2. I loved this post of yours! Voted on Indivine as well!

    keep bloggin!

  3. Well-written. Its sad to say that 26th jan has lost its true significance and we merely treat it as yet another holiday.

  4. Very nice post.. I have felt the same many times.

  5. You might like to my post INDEPENDENCE--REPUBLIC
    Let me know your comments please

  6. Let me try answering your question Neeraj. The creamy layer tends to go out of country because they feel we don't have a good base to proliferate their knowledge to the next level. Plus, they also tend to believe that pasture on the other side is green. However, the fact boils down to the kind of support we provide for such people. If we *could* have a nation without corruption and selfishness among the politicians, we would have gone beyond imaginations in terms of development. Now that we know the reasons, let us get the right people to right job.

    Again, i see no reason why we shouldn't be celebrating the occasion. After all one fine day the dreams will be realized... only the hope is that it doesn't take a long time!

    Not sure if you have read my post on Republic Day... if not take a look :)

  7. On this occasion of Republic Day.... They released the newer version of " MILE SUR MERA TUMAR"..... Hmmm.... I was furious & totally pissed off... But woud that matter to anyone..... Everyone loves Glamor... What a funny way to glamorize it....???? The sur, taal, arth, pride...... everything is bloody missing... ALL CRAPPED UP.... Its for sure that INDIA NO LONGER CAN EXIST WITHOUT THE GLAMORIZED POTTYWOOD...Oh! Sorry...BOLLYWOOD....

  8. Despite 60 years, we have a lot to do and the beginning should be in accepting this vast diversity as a gift rather than a bone of contention as many see it!

    Long live the republic!

  9. Nice post Neeraj. I am however worried about the rising nationalism in India. Too much flag waving and patriotism is not good (this is what got America into the Iraq war). Also I am concerned that Indian government is focused on the middle class and its concerns and not on the poor people of India.

  10. such is my ignorance, but I thought it was 60 years.. considering 1950-2010 right?

    more questions - what are we doing about it ? since i am not doing anything about it - I am not asking how my country is being run.

  11. Well I too had the same question in mind..Why celebrate Republic Day??? I think I have found an another answer in addition to mine to get my sleep back...good post on the whole :)

  12. "It is time we ask a small question to ourselves as to what significance it really has had within our lives." I agree.

    wrote a post on this last year and maintain my stand this year. It is we the people who have to better ourselves .

  13. There are some struggles and there are truely some developements, there are some injustice and there are some honest officials there are violence and there are heartning events as well. We are growing by and this would all be fine soon.

  14. You're right, Neeraj, in spelling out the current scenario of nationalism in the country. But, it's heart-wrenching to see many of the hypothetically aware blogger friends too at sixes and sevens about the significant historic facts and figures.

    A bit of research doesn't call for too much of a labour for anyone to be precise and correct, at least, before venturing to blog about historic facts & figures.

    I've read quite a few posts about the Republic Day, since, yesterday, and feel utterly crestfallen to see that most of the bloggers are themselves confused as to whether it's the 60th or the 61st Republic Day of the polity. Such miserable is the state of nationalistic fervor in the minds of the masses, in general.

    Imagine, had the fanatic martyrs foreseen this, when they sacrificed their lives for the nation's freedom, had Bismil crooned with tremendous hope and pride...

    "Shaheedon ki chitaon par lagenge har baras mele,
    Watan par marne waalon ka yehi baaki nishaan hoga..."...???

    How can today's Indians afford to be so individualistic & heartless as to conjure up the very beastly idea of deceiving the selfless martyrs by thinking - "why to celebrate the Republic Day?"???

    I'm sorry to say, but it's a matter of immense disgrace on the very existence of such people who are, in fact, a futile liability to the nation.

    May God enlighten them with unforgettable lessons!

    "Hai liye hathiyaar dushman taak mein baitha udhar,
    Aur hum taiyyaar hain seena liye apna idhar,
    Khoon se khelenge holi gar vatan muskhil mein hai,
    Sarfaroshi ki tamanna ab hamaare dil mein hai,
    Dekhna hai zor kitna baazu-e-qatil me hai..."

    My supreme tributes to the nation's selfless martyrs on India's 61st Republic Day! It's thanks to them, after all, that today we enjoy the right to freedom of expression among other fruits of freedom, and are able to vent out our opinions.


    Shrinath Vashishtha
    Port Blair.
    Andaman & Nicobar Islands (India).

  15. I'm sorry about the slightly verbose comment, but it's pretty difficult to control myself when it comes to the national issues and patriotism.

    And as you know, dear Neeraj, I never post my comments just for the sake of commenting on a post. I always try my best to do justice to the blogger's efforts and opinions and most importantly, the topic under discussion.

    Thanks and keep blogging with a purpose, as you always do! Cheers to you! :)

  16. @Shrinath, your optimistic approach is always full of zest and I am almost always intrigued by your thoughtful comments! I agree and anticipate your thinking!

    One of my blogger friend just dropped me an email to rectify the sentence of this post as he felt that it is the 60th republic day and NOT 61st. I later discovered that the problem here was that he was treating the republic day as an anniversary and hence the confusion.

    Just for the sake of records, India was declared republic on 26th Jan, 1950 which marked the 1st republic day! Subsequently, the republic days are being observed. It is the 61st Republic day that we celebrated yesterday! Just to reiterate that the day is not an anniversary celebration!

  17. thats a beautiful pic. The post is good too and yes, we need to thing of what we have given to the country rather than continuously crib about what the country has given us..

  18. On 26th Jan it applied its constitution to was written over a period of 2 years 11 months..adopted on Nov. 26, 1949...No offence but patriotism cannot be make bonded to a day...Now is it really worthless and not going at all to election booth and then see another scoundrel being elected and then singing mera bharat mahan?

  19. Nice thoughts. Well, I think, Yes there are so many problems in front of the nation but that doesn't mean we are not republic or republic day doesn't have any significance. We are a democracy and things work bit differently in democracy; maybe little slow. We must remember that India is a house to 1.1 billion people and in spite of that the condition is much better. We don't purchase a pistol in india (like US) just to protect ourself. We live much free life as comapred to progressive countries.

  20. The generation that witnessed the freedom struggle will empathize more with the Independence day. The degree of emphathizing like it or not decreases with the subsequent generations. The fervour of national bond will gather steam only during wars/ terror attacks and sporting events (cricket when it comes to India). It is human nature. A man who worked hard to build a business empire will empathize more with the wealth he gained rather than his grandson who inherits the wealth.

    And about problems that we face, Every nation faces problems in various scale in different plane. Agreed our 60 years of journey had its own bumby ride, falls but we still managed to keep our step forward, still we managed to have a democracy with its own pros and cons. We are only 60 years since we charted our own path... We are still young as a nation and learning from mistakes ...

  21. A common man who wants to work for the country,but he never get a chance or the people who are in higher positions will never allow him to do and the people who are in the assembly chambers are not helping the people nor working for the country... i feel will you agree with me?
    i have seen lot many happing but iam a common man were i cant go aganist...

  22. If i have posted a wrong matter in this site then iam sorry. But i mean to tell the fact no one can agree with me and they tell leave all these matter and just go with your work. I can tell one thing they are playing with common people,who are getting smashed between the higher authorites and their orders this is not fair, they are just a common people who just affort not even for their daily bread....

  23. Common people had never got any freedom they are still under some higher commands and political leaders....

  24. @Pooja, I kinda agree with the point you are trying to make. This can be a drawback of democracy. When we say that the government is of the people, by the people and for the people, every crap mentality is treated equally fine with the other. There is almost no difference between a beggar and a CEO of a great organization. What disheartens me is the kind of people entering politics. I really feel bad when I had to visit a corporater of my locality (a 2nd grade passed housewife turned politician) in order to get my engineering certificates attested. I am a strong believer in quality education. Education imparts a power to initiate thinking. A minimal primary education must be a mandate in order to enter politics. Illiterates and criminals MUST NOT be allowed into power. When we talk about equal rights, the right must be observed in terms of getting oneself educated and not really about merely entering into politics. Politics is NOT a game, it is a GREAT responsibility and only serious and concerned leaders must be made illegible to enter it. It is just because of such shortcomings of our current government system that serious and able leaders are unable to sustain into politics.

    I am SURE that enforcing a minimal criteria for entering politics will filter the filth out of the system upto a considerable extent.

  25. that was really a thought provoking post...but our nation is made up of us...if it is corrupt its us who has made it corrupt... if only people can understand that individually one can also be the change, then maybe we can hope for a better republic...

  26. thought provoking... but as soon as we finish saying it... our thoughts end... ! sadly tats true... as a nation we have become a bunch of thick skinned people !