Saturday, August 15, 2009

An emotional Independence Day

I watched a re-run of the movie Gandhi last night on TV. There were many emotional moments during the movie, as I watched the story of India's struggle for independence. I could not stay unmoved as I watched the brutal lathi charges, the bravery and countless sacrifices. I rejoiced at the smallest victories, I cried at the losses, I despaired at the Partition.
When the movie was over, I went to bed thinking - This story is my legacy. This is what I have inherited. These are my heroes, ordinary men and women, born of the same soil as I am.
Right now, outside my house, they are playing the usual Independence day mere pyaare vatan...saare jahan se acchha...apni azaadi ko hum...It should be cliched and cheesy, but instead, today, it gives me goosebumps.
I remember the movie I watched, and the zeal of the men and women who died to give us India.
But I believe you don't die, unless every memory of you is erased from the hearts and minds of your countrymen.
Let's remember then, the heroes and the leaders, the ordinary men and women, who gave me the right to stand up and say, "I am Indian, and I am free!"


NatInTO said...

It's one of my favorite movies because it always makes me reflect on how the lives of a few people have changed not only their time but future generations all over the world. We often focus on the political movements, the battles, the treaties; and in all that, we tend to forget about some of the real unsung heroes that make freedom possible, the everyday people who have to pick up the pieces and start over in a new home, a new city, even a new country, who understand that pride comes with respect and freedom goes hand in hand with tolerance. When I watch the movie, I realize that those values and ideas have not been forgotten and left behind. I can see those values are still very strong everywhere I go in India and that's definitely a lesson for the rest of the world. I believe it's not just a matter of "having freedom"; it's what you do with it that really matters...

Ravi Ramakantan said...

“Generations to come will scarce believe that such a man as this ever in flesh and blood walked this earth”.
Those words of Albert Einstein from the last part of this movie still reverberate in my mind.. the only movie I have seen thrice in theaters and had made no attempt to hold back my tears the first time I saw it!

Leela Salivati said...

It is just staggering to think of this word legacy that you used. Because the legacy, which is what it is, is - one man - who inspired millions in this country to stand up for their rights with non-violence as their weapon. It sounds ridiculous that it happened. That people withstood lathi after lathi, went on fasts, followed everything that that diminutive scantily clad mortal asked them to do, by the millions, to give us the biggest and arguably the greatest democracy on earth. Wrenched back from seasoned and resolute imperialists . What on earth are we doing thats remotely reflective of that sort of greatness....of that legacy.