Independence Day is celebrated on August 15 every year to mark the end of British rule in India. Also known as ‘I-Day’, Every year the Prime Minister of India hoists the national flag at the Red Fort to commemorate the big day.
I-Day is one of the most significant days in Indian history that also reminds us of the bravery of our freedom fighters. In Hindi, the day is termed as ‘Swatantrata Diwas’.
History and Significance of Independence Day:
The British established their first outpost on the Indian Subcontinent in 1619 at Surat on the northwestern coast. By the end of that century, the East India Company had opened three more permanent trading stations at Madras, Bombay, and Calcutta.
Britishers continued to expand their influence in the region until, by the mid-nineteenth century, they had control over most of what is present-day India, Pakistan, and Bangladesh. In 1857, a rebellion in northern India by mutinous Indian soldiers led the British Government to transfer all political power from the East India Company to the Crown. The British began controlling most of India directly while administering the rest through treaties with local rulers.
In 1920, Indian leader Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi also referred to as the ‘Father of Nation’ transformed the Indian National Congress political party into a mass movement to campaign against the British colonial rule. The party used both parliamentary and nonviolent resistance and non-cooperation to achieve independence. Other leaders, notably Subhash Chandra Bose, also adopted a military approach to the movement. The movement culminated in the independence of the subcontinent from the British Empire and the formation of India and Pakistan.
On August 15, 1947, India got freedom from the British rule. The day August 15 is also marked as the anniversary of the partition of the British ruled India into two countries, India and Pakistan due to the violence between Muslims and Hindus. The partition was accompanied by violent riots and mass casualties, and the displacement of nearly 15 million people due to religious violence.