I know I probably sound like a broken record at this point but I want to reiterate how sorry I am for not being so active on this blog. Not that anyone actually cares, but I still feel like I’m letting some people down by not writing so often (like my number one fan… thanks, Amma). Anyway, I guess I’ll just jump right into it, huh? (this is really short, sorry).
Although I wasn’t born there, this day still holds so much meaning for me. If India didn’t gain independence, my dad couldn’t have come to the US (which means I might not exist and you couldn’t read my mediocre blog). Without 300 years of fighting the British, you wouldn’t have yoga, turmeric or curry. It’s crazy to think about how much India has affected the world through the years and without freedom, none of that would be possible.
Most people know who Mahatma Gandhi is; a small man with an immense amount of strength and willpower. He helped shape India into what it is today and is often considered the father of the nation. However, he isn’t the only one that sparked change. Here are some of my personal favorite freedom fighters, get ready to learn about some incredible people. Sarojini Naidu: a poet and activist. She traveled across the country giving speeches and fighting for rights, later becoming the first woman that was elected as governer of an Indian state. Mangal Pandey: a soldier in the British East India Company army. He revolted against the greased cartridges used by the British (they were using animal products which went against Hindu practices) and later was hanged by the British. Rani Lakshmi Bai: a kick ass queen (she ruled alone) who led her army against invading Brits and struck fear in anyone that crossed her path. She may have died in battle but she lives on forever in our spirits. Jawahar Lal Nehru: one of Gandhi’s closest friends who helped fight for political freedom. After Gandhi’s death, he became the first prime minister of India. Chandra Shekar Azad: a revolutionary that would do anything for India’s freedom. He started off peacefully with Gandhi and later began using arms to fight the British rule and eventually shot himself instead of being killed by British officers. Subhash Chandra Bose: a revolutionary that founded the Indian national army and was part of the Indian National Congress. His plane went missing and later people found out he died in a plane crash, but some people believed he was still alive and claimed to have seen him. Bhagat Singh: a revolutionary that wouldn’t take anyone’s crap and was considered a martyr for Indians during the revolution. He was sentenced to death by hanging after avenging another freedom fighter’s death (Lala Lajpat Rai). When he got to the rope, he kissed it and tied it around his neck by himself, which was basically a giant “take that” to the Brits. These men and women have been inspiring millions (including me) every single day, even after their deaths. I cannot imagine what horrors they went through, how much they sacrificed and lost just for me to be here today. Without them, India wouldn’t be the country it is today, inspiring, strong and progressive. From them, I learned to be strong and resilient during hardships, always stand up for what I believe in and never take any nonsense from people that want to see me fall. I could talk about these heroes forever, but for your sake, I will stop now.
India’s independence is not just a day to see fireworks and enjoy, it’s also a day to realize my background, my history, and my story. Today is a day that reminds me of who I really am, where I came from and how grateful I should be for all that. I’m so proud to call myself Indian. To say that I come from a country with so much diversity it puts the US to shame. I come from a place where the people are warm, welcoming and loving. I I come from a country that is so colorful, both literally and figuratively. I come from a country that has shown strength, resilience, and passion for centuries. I come from a country that gives me pride in my identity, makes me excited to show off my roots and brings forth parts of me I wouldn’t have otherwise. I love you India, thank you for being such a beautiful place, one day I will be back to visit you.
This isn’t even half of what India is, but it is so beautiful and I love it, so I’m sharing it with y’all. (for those interested, this is the same guy who sang Jai Ho from Slumdog Millionaire).
Till next time,