Vice President calls upon youngsters to strive hard for building an India that the freedom fighters envisioned

New Delhi: Vice President, Shri M. Venkaiah Naidu today called upon youngsters to strive hard to build a strong and prosperous India as envisioned by the freedom fighters. He said that it will be a true tribute to those great men and women who fought for the freedom of our nation. “Never forget the countless sacrifices made by our freedom fighters to free our nation from foreign yoke,” he added

Delivering his address at the Bharatha Matha Harathi program through a prerecorded video message, Shri Naidu appealed to parents and teachers to instill the spirit of patriotism in the minds of the younger generation. “As we take pride in our rich legacy, we must also make sure that the coming generations get to know about our great nation and contribute to its all-around development,” he added.

Speaking on India’s freedom struggle, Shri Naidu said that the freedom that India got from British rule was hard-earned and was a result of the collective efforts of people from diverse backgrounds across the country. The Vice President mentioned that after India became Independent many sceptics believed that India would not sustain itself owing to its linguistic and cultural diversities, but India proved them wrong. He said that India’s cultural and civilizational legacy binds its people together. “The spirit of ‘nation is above all’ is present in our DNA,” he added.

Noting the significance of our national flag, Shri Naidu said, our flag is not just a piece of cloth with colours on it, but it is a symbol of liberty, freedom, and sacrifice.

Referring to India’s demographic advantage with around 65 per cent of the country’s population below the age of 35 years, the Vice President called for fully leveraging the potential of a young nation to fast-track growth. He said that there is a need to work with greater vigour, energy and enthusiasm to achieve “Atmanirbharta” or self-reliance in all areas. “Our youth is going to be both makers and beneficiaries of Atmanirbharta,” he added.

Shri Naidu lauded the Bharatha Matha Foundation for organizing the unique program where prayers were offered to make the nation strong, protect it from external and internal aggression, and to keep the people united, happy, and healthy. He said that celebrations that promote a sense of patriotism, social cohesion and national unity are important and must be held more often in all parts of the country.

Following is the full text of speech –

“It gives me immense pleasure to be a part of this very unique programme, Bharatha Matha Harathi.

I have heard of many Harathis in the past, but they have had religious context where we pray to a deity, a river, or some Shakthi to invoke blessings. Here we are praying for our motherland, the country we adore, the country we live in and the country we wish to see in the coming years. It is a country we are collectively shaping. It is an idea of a New India that we are tirelessly nurturing with commitment and devotion.

I would like to congratulate the Bharatha Matha Foundation and Shri G. Kishan Reddy, Union Minister of Culture and Tourism, and DoNER, for conceptualising and sustaining such an inspiring program. I am glad to know that the Bharatha Matha Foundation has been organising this programme for the last 6 years as a part of which over 3000 girls clad in Bharatha Matha attire assemble as priests to chant Vedic mantras and offer traditional Harathi to Maa Bharathi.

The date chosen for the programme is even more special: January 26th, Republic Day. The day is auspicious for all Indians, the day when all of us agreed to abide by the constitution. The constitution gave us the foundation for good governance and a robust democratic functioning. However, we recognize that our beloved country, Bharath, has had a long and illustrious cultural history over many millenniums.

The unified geographical conception of India goes back to Vishnu Purana. It is stated in verse—the country that lies to the north of the ocean and to the south of the snowy mountains is called Bharatha and there dwell the descendants of Bharatha.

The programme’s message is secular and universal, as the prayer is to make the nation strong, protect it from external and internal aggression, and to keep the people united, happy, and healthy. Bharatha Matha Harathi is for the wellbeing of all, and therefore, for the celebration of life on the planet.

Celebrations like these are very important. They promote our sense of patriotism, social cohesion and national unity. Such unique celebrations that bring people together for our motherland must be held more often and in all parts of the country, so that people establish a deeper connect with our great motherland.As we take pride in our rich legacy, we must also make sure that the coming generations get to know about our great nation and contribute to its all round development.

My dear sisters and brothers,

As you are all aware, we are celebrating 75 years of Indian Independence. Many programmes are now being conducted under the theme of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav with mass participation from citizens across the country and also from the diaspora. The freedom we got from the British was hard-earned. Many people, cutting across all social barriers, fought for it. When India became an independent country, there were many skeptics who thought India, with its linguistic and cultural diversities, would not sustain itself as a nation. India proved them all wrong. We proved them wrong because we all, in spite of our cultural diversity, draw inspiration from a set of core values. In his book “The Discovery of India”, former Prime Minister Shri Jawahar Lal Nehru used the analogy of the thread of a garland to hold different flowers. It is this cultural and civilizational legacy that we inherit that binds us together. And because we are united, we have been able to sustain the nation and surprise the world. The spirit of “nation is above all” is in our DNA. This is what keeps us united and makes us work for the country.

Great Telugu writer Rayaprolu Subba Rao had said,

ఏదేశమేగినాఎందుకాలిడినా

ఏపీఠమెక్కినాఎవ్వరేమనినా

పొగడరానీతల్లిభూమిభారతిని

నిలుపరానీజాతినిండుగౌరవము “

It means: Whichever country you go, whichever land you visit, whatever position you are in,whatever anyone might say,

Praise your motherland Bharathi!

Uphold the dignity and respect of your nation!

Celebrated Urdu poet Iqbal, had said – Saare Jahan se Acha—Hindostan Hamara

Rayaprolu Subba Rao and Iqbal may come from different regions and religions, but their devotion to the nation is the same, as they are both flowers in the same garland.

Dear youngsters,

Never forget the countless sacrifices made by our freedom fighters to free our nation from foreign yoke. Tomorrow when we salute the National Flag, remember that our flag is not just a piece of cloth with colours on it, but it is a symbol of liberty, freedom, and sacrifice. Now, it is our turn to work hard and build an India that our freedom fighters envisioned, that will be a true tribute to those great men and women. Parents, as well as teachers, must instill the spirit of patriotism in the minds of the younger generation.

Many economic and political pundits predict that India is going to play a vital role in defining the destiny of the world in the future. We are a young nation with about 65 per cent of our population below the age 35 years. I have a gathering of students here and they have the responsibility of unleashing the tremendous potential we as a nation have. We need to work with greater vigour, energy and enthusiasm and achieve “Atmanirbhartha” or self-reliance in all areas.Our youth is going to be both makers and beneficiaries of Atmanirbharta. I am sure you all have the blessings of Bharath Matha in making this country “Vishwaguru” once again.

I once again congratulate the organisers, particularly Shri G KishanReddy. My blessings to all the children gathered here and my best wishes to all.

Jai Hind!”

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