India celebrated 71st Republic Day on 26 January 2020. The country has achieved a lot in 70 years of its journey as a Republic. India became independent in 1947 but its constitution was drafted under the Chairmanship of Dr Baba Saheb Ambedkar by a Drafting Committee. After two years, eleven months and eighteen days the constitution was ready and was adopted on 26 November 1949. But given the historic importance of 26 January since 1930 when Indian freedom fighters adopted Poorn Swaraj Resolution, 26 January 1950 was decided for implementation of the constitution.
Originally, the Constitution was divided into 22 Parts having 395 articles in addition to Preamble and 8 Schedules. Today it has almost 448 articles in 25 Parts apart from Preamble, 12 Schedules, 5 appendices after having about 103 Constitutional amendments. The constitution is recognised as the world’s longest written constitution. It provides for Union of India which means union of states as units, with the separate demarcation of powers between the Centre and States. Now it has third layer – Panchayati Raj which was added by a constitutional amendment and has defined powers.
More than 30 million people of Indian origin are living in 192 countries and on 26 January, the Indian flag is hoisted in most of them. More than 1.5 million people of Indian origin are living in UK who takes immense pride in India’s progress and achievement as a relatively young but largest democracy of the world. The country has elected head – President and so it is a Republic. In about seven decades, India has achieved tremendous success in almost every field. Chandrayan and Mangalyan have reached to the Moon and the Mars. Improving lives of millions has been top priority of government and it is reflected in the message given by President on the eve of Republic Day where he mentioned:
“The Government has launched a number of welfare campaigns, and what is especially noteworthy about them is the fact that citizens have voluntarily turned them into popular movements. The ‘Swachchh Bharat Abhiyan’ has achieved astounding success in such a short time. The same spirit can be seen in other endeavours. Be it giving up cooking fuel subsidy or pushing digital payments, the common man has made the government programmes his own, making them truly effective. The success of the ‘Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana’ is a matter of pride, as the target of 8 crore beneficiaries has been achieved. With this, those in need have access to clean fuel. The ‘Pradhan Mantri Sahaj Bijli Har Ghar Yojana’, that is, ‘Saubhagya’ too has brightened people’s lives. Under ‘Pradhanmantri Kisan Samman Nidhi’, more than 14 crore farmer families have become entitled to receive minimum annual income of Rs 6,000 thousand. This has enabled the farmers who feed us to live a life of dignity.”
Progress made by India in all sectors is benefiting millions of people. Afterall, Republic Day is celebration of People’s rule as per the wishes of People.