Republic Day Sky, 2021
I am looking up to the sky from my evening stroll with my kids at the park, this is my Republic Day sky. Pink, full of winter winds, a flock of birds moving in harmony, making it picturesque.
Republic Day is the day of the pride and a day when every Indian citizen pays the respect to the nation. Or we can say to an idea of the nation that binds everyone together.
We honour the date and celebrate the “Constitution of India” , which took almost 1.5 years to make post independence.
Republic Day Parade isn’t just army, navy, airforce coming together and marching with randomly picked state tableaus. They come together to show the strength, diversity and solitary to thousands of people who make the nation work. They represent the India.
People, who walk on Republic Day parade today, start their preparations almost 3–4 months ahead of the day. Different states’ cultural, sports and civic bodies do make sure they pick right talent, craft, and art from the remotest of India’s places to put up the show that we all see. There are practice parade done just like the final day from the 1st week of January till the Republic Day. Delhi winter, hours of practice, walk from Rashtrapati Bhawan to Rajpath is nothing but full of fog but ask me none of these matters to any of the participants.
How do I know this? I had that honour 23 years back on 49th Republic Day parade, a 9th standard school girl who just knew how to dance well represented the state folk dance along with a bunch of friends and teachers. At that time, I never thought it would be a memory for life, an experience that I will cherish for as long as I live. I can’t thank my parents enough for pushing me for something like this at a young age. Taking me daily for practice, sending me away alone from home for such a long time, managing my school classes and taking special permissions for term exams.
It isn’t just about me, and like me, there were 180 other from my state and five other states participants who lived with us. Hundreds of others who where practicing daily and planning for the day. Each with own story, each feeling the same honour and pride to be living the moment. There are other countries invited to witness, it is nation’s family party that everyone is watching.
Every person who participated was recognised, well awarded with recognition and most importantly they would be caring the pride in their heart for life. I didn’t have a camera, Instagram stories, Facebook checkings from those times but I have the emotion carved in mind.
An idea that I have represented my country in a tiny way, always bought a sense of belonging to me.
Now every Republic Day, I see my husband curling up with my girls and making them watch the parade, telling them things maybe they are too young to grasp, but they watch the parade in awe. I occasionally I try to brag about my participation, and they don’t even flinch over it. That doesn’t matter. For me having done that is enough and hoping they will do something like this of their own makes me happy. A small act, that makes my children belong to the country they are born to, may build something, employe some and bring the change.
Ironically today, when you open the news channel we aren’t just talking about Republic Day parade, there is a parallel news. There is a protest. There is a big emotion attached to it because it is the “Farmers”, who are protesting. On the same day when the whole nation comes together to celebrate the constitution of India, the vary nation’s people are protesting against it.
Why does it matter? Let’s brush up our fundamentals once again. India is the second-largest producer of wheat and rice, the world’s major food staples. Agriculture is unquestionably the largest livelihood provider in India with its allied sectors, more so in the vast rural areas. Farmers are the backbone of India. How can the ruling party antagonise such important trade community?
The farmers are protesting against 2 Farm Bills that the Rajya Sabha recently passed: (1) the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Bill, 2020, and (2) the Farmers (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Bill, 2020.
The two bills had already cleared the lower house — the Lok Sabha. When they were introduced in the Rajya Sabha, there was ruckus and finally, the Bill was passed through a voice vote.
If anyone has read the Bill correctly and understood the amendments would have a logical argument on state vs centre control at some point in argument. Simultaneously, the rest of the amendments directly empower the farmer to price better and remove regulatory and APMC price control. Bill amendments are done keeping long term economics and empowering farmers to control their crops. Like any other Bill, this will need more thorough debate, buy-in from respective stakeholders and necessary assurances from Government. And Government and anyone concerned with this should be doing that.
Do the debate in the lower or upper house, disrupt the assembly, march to Rashtrapati Bhawan. But, my question today is “ taking a Farmer’s protest in the capital on Republic Day doesn’t look like just an oppressor’s act to be heard. “ there is more to this. It isn’t an act to be heard by the Government but comes across more like effort to defame the country before the world.
Interestingly, most of the farmers who are protesting are only from Delhi, Punjab and Haryana with ulterior motives up their sleeves.The question here is, where are the rest of the country’s farmers and why they aren’t as agitated as these?
Old age wisdom says we don’t bring the family flued on the daughter’s wedding day. It just shows to the world how broken the family is.
Today we just did that allowed goons to pull our flag down over random colour cloth. Allowed agendas and politics to over power the democracy.
You can be left or right in your ideology, but everyone needs to look straight to the flag of the country, that we all believe in. The day we forget this the idea of democracy becomes flawed.
We all might not see eye to eye from our sides but wish we can look up together and see the pink sky and salute together.
Happy Republic Day India !