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R-Day— the significance

Monday - January 28, 2019 6:43 pm , Category : WTN SPECIAL

WTN: Every year we celebrate Republic Day with much pomp and show. A plethora of new announcements are made for the development of the country and we remember our patriots and martyrs through cultural events. We eat sweets, sing the national anthem early in the morning , hoist flags wherever we can and thus the day passes in holiday celebrations. Once it is over, most of us forget the heroes the nation for the rest of the year and what or where of ‘republic’ is relegated to the backburner.

The tenets of secularism or socialism or equality that our nation stands for, are often downplayed or conveniently sidelined for the promotion of fringe ideologies that belie the significance of ‘republic’ and Republic Day. January 26 has just remained a date in the official calendar for most of us. The ideas which were envisaged to strengthen the country are today manipulated for narrow interests and selfish gains that weaken the fabric of the nation.

A republic is only a true republic if its citizens feel they are one and belong to the nation, if they have equal share of the rights and privileges with other fellow beings in society. Unfortunately, poverty and disparity divide people and stratify us. As long as the gap between the haves and have-nots keeps widening, republic cannot be realised in its full spirit. In India, equitable distribution of resources is a major problem, because of policy lacunae and corruption. This leaves a large section of the population marginalised and deprived. Economic power is also related to social justice, which is why, poverty also breeds greater injustice and violence and distances people from people. This fragments society and the unity and harmony that a republic envisages, fails.

This is bound to weaken democratic values. When just 1 per cent  of the population corners over 50 per cent of the nation’s wealth, while the rest 99 per cent have to do with less than 50 per cent resources, there is bound to be unhappiness, resentment and poor social development indices. No wonder we have one of the largest number of rapes and abuses in the world, our women are the most anemic, most of our children are underweight and stunted, thousands of children go amiss due to trafficking and a complicit police, many are engaged as child labourers in hazardous workplaces. We lead in infant and maternal mortality rates; our per capita income is among the lowest in the world, we have a plethora of illiterate, half literate leaders who have criminal records and assets disproportionate to their income. Our universities fare poorly in global rankings. As long as these injustices and falsities exist in our society, we are not truly a successful republic. 

There are several systemic failures in our whole system that we need to address, poverty alleviation and social security being the most urgent and important of them. If the true value of republic is understood and if it is put into practice in its full potential, no one can stop India from being one of the greatest nations in the world. -Window To News