Video by Avani Dhruv – https://youtu.be/4mXr15NpheQ
For the first time in the history of the United States, Indian Americans chose the Lincoln Memorial, one of America’s iconic monuments, to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of India’s Independence.
It is time we honor President Abraham Lincoln, who took the bold first step in the emancipation of enslaved people and brought liberation to Americans, and for that, he paid the price with his life. So did the father of the Indian nation, Mahatma Gandhi, who fought brilliantly to change the societal norm of untouchability. He also paid the price for bringing freedom to India from British colonialism with his life. He achieved that without violence and set an example to the world. Today, the world looks up to Mahatma Gandhi as the Prophet of Peace and emulates his methods.
It was a purposeful event, a homecoming to many Indians. Indeed, history was made by commemorating the event at one of America’s iconic monuments, The Lincoln Memorial.
Homecoming is a state of mind where one feels relaxed, joyful, happy, and in harmony with fellow Indians by shedding all filters of religions, languages, caste, and cultures and accepting and respecting the otherness of other Indians.
The joy expressed by Indians at the event was overwhelming. Everyone felt like they belonged to one nation and were one people. Inclusive India was not only a slogan but action vibes to them during the event. Each time “no-politics” was mentioned, it generated emphatic nods from fellow Indians. Politics or political figures were kept entirely out of the program as they are transitory, whereas India is an eternal nation.
A few mentioned that they had goosebumps when they joined the medley of twelve one-liner patriotic songs. They further appreciated knowing about an inclusive India in terms of Religion, culture, geography, languages, saints, and India’s enduring architectural icons.
We were thrilled to see our youth participate in the program. The extraordinary joy came when the kids heard about Laddus, and they could not wait to get their hands on it. That is the highlight of the program – to see our youth.
Spiritual freedom is the most outstanding achievement in one’s life, and it clings to you till eternity. The ones who can free themselves from ill-will, hostility, malice, hatred, anger, jealousy, pressure, tension, apprehension, stress, strain, and conflicts, are showered with blessings of peace and joy. It is good to be free.
PROGRAM -11:00 AM – 12:30 PM
- American National Anthem
- Indian National Anthem
- Diversity of India’s Greetings
- One-liner songs (about 12) – group sing
- Mere Desh Ki dharti Sohna Uglay
- Songs by individuals
- Unmatched historical religious diversity
- Vande Mataram
- Sare Jahan say achcha Hindustan Hamara
- Jahan Daal Daal pay sonay ki chidiya karti hai basera
- Inclusive India’s famous religious icons
- Inclusive India’s cultural Icons
- Non-stop Patriotic Songs – sing along
- Learn the beauty and wisdom of India’s inclusiveness.
- Distribution of Laddus – India’s popular dessert.
Anju Srivastava, “I love my India where we do not differentiate between one Indian and the other, and when I read that in the Facebook, I was tempted to witness and I am glad I came.”
Mohan Swamy, “Happy Independence Day; I have been here for the last four years, and it feels like home to see Indians celebrating Independence. I came because it was for all Indians.”
Swati Ramesh, “Glad to see our flag flying Infront of the iconic Lincoln Memorial. We are the largest democracy, and America is the first democracy where all humans are considered equal.”
Sangeeta Mathur “Bhartiya” Simlote, I am grateful to the organizers for a much enjoyable and heartwarming celebration of the 75 years of independent India. We, as Indians, free of any caste or creed, collectively sang many patriotic songs. This was also joined by visitors from Canada who stopped by when they saw the Tiranga. It was followed by the distribution of the traditional laddoos. Mike ji had a handle on everything so well. It was all in all a great event.
Mike Ghouse, “We are proud of our heritage – a multi-faith, multi-cultural, multi-regional and multi-linguistic society, where we have come to accept and respect every way people have lived. For over 5000 years, India has been a beacon of pluralism – it has embraced Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Baha’i, and Zoroastrian faiths to include in the array of indigenous religions; Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Sikhism. India’s democracy is a shining example to the world, where the people have peacefully transferred the powers.
Indians are inherently secular and economically capitalistic. They believe in a “live-and-let-live” lifestyle, which is the essence of capitalism. Over the years, we have expressed the highest maturity in handling extreme situations. The more divergent opinions we hear, the larger our heart grows, and the bigger our embrace would be. We are committed to fostering a pluralistic model of building a cohesive India where every Indian feels included and treated on an equal footing. I am proud of my heritage and am proud to be an Indian-American.”
It was a historic moment for the people of Indian origin, who celebrated India’s 75th Independence Day- a non-political event.
Every Indian is encouraged to create an inclusive model of India where every Indian feels included. Please review the seven images appreciating India’s linguistic, religious, and cultural diversity as a sampler.
Indians came together and organized the program, and no organization was involved.
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