Being Indian

194

SHIFFA JEELANI

AMIDST the crisp January air, India celebrated its 75th Republic Day with unparalleled grandeur and patriotic fervour, marking a momentous milestone in the nation’s history. From the bustling streets of the national capital to the serene landscapes of state capitals, the entire country resonated with the echoes of freedom and democracy, as millions of Indians came together to honour the spirit of the Indian Republic.

  • A symbol of national unity

The focal point of the celebrations was the majestic Kartavya Path in the heart of New Delhi, where the Republic Day parade unfolded with unparalleled magnificence. Against the backdrop of the iconic India Gate, the parade showcased a stunning display of India’s military prowess, cultural heritage, and technological advancements, serving as a symbol of national unity and pride.

  • Glorious celebrations in Kashmir

Republic Day holds a special place in the heart of every Indian, symbolising the birth of a sovereign, democratic nation. It marks the historic moment when the Constitution of India came into effect on January 26, 1950, replacing the Government of India Act (1935) as the governing document of India. This momentous occasion celebrates the ideals of justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity, which form the cornerstone of our nation.

In the beautiful valley of Kashmir, Republic Day is commemorated with unparalleled zeal and fervour, reflecting the region’s deep-rooted commitment to the principles of democracy and unity in diversity. As the sun rises over the snow-capped peaks and lush green valleys, the air is filled with anticipation and patriotism, as Kashmiris from all walks of life come together to honour the spirit of freedom and democracy.

  • A historic tapestry of unity

The celebrations for the 75th Republic Day were held across all the District Court Complexes (DCCs) of the Kashmir Valley, showcasing a historic tapestry of unity and patriotism. From Srinagar to Shopian, Budgam to Baramulla, each district reverberated with the resonating echoes of the national anthem and the vibrant colours of the tricolour.

In Srinagar, the heart of Kashmir, the District Court Complex at Moominabad witnessed an unforgettable celebration, with Principal District & Sessions Judge Jawad Ahmad leading the proceedings. Amidst the unfurling of the national flag and the solemn salute of the guards, the spirit of freedom and justice filled the air, reminding everyone of the sacrifices made by our forefathers to secure the nation’s independence.

  • A symbol of judicial integrity

The judiciary, often hailed as the custodian of justice and the guardian of democracy, played a pivotal role in the Republic Day celebrations across Kashmir. In Budgam, Principal District & Sessions Judge Khalil Ahmad Choudhary emphasised the importance of upholding the Constitution and ensuring access to justice for all citizens. His impassioned speech resonated with the audience, underscoring the judiciary’s unwavering commitment to the principles of justice, equality, and the rule of law.

Similarly, in Ganderbal, Ritesh Kumar Dubey, Chairman, DLSA (Pr. District & Sessions Judge), unfurled the National Flag, symbolising the judiciary’s role in upholding the democratic values of the nation. The event brought together judicial officers, members of the bar, and government officials, reaffirming their collective commitment to the ideals of justice and equality.

  • A tribute to martyrs and protectors

Republic Day also serves as a solemn tribute to the brave men and women who laid down their lives in defence of the nation. In his address, Advisor to Lieutenant Governor Rajesh Rai Bhatnagar paid homage to the security forces who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty. His words echoed the gratitude and reverence felt by every Kashmiri towards the paramilitary and police force, who ensure the nation’s internal security and safeguard its values and freedoms.

  • Cultural extravaganza and state representations

The celebrations were not just limited to the judiciary; they also encompassed a vibrant cultural extravaganza and state representations across the Valley. From the majestic Bakshi Stadium in Srinagar to the serene court complexes in Budgam and Ganderbal, artists from various parts of the union territory showcased their talent and creativity, adding a colourful dimension to the celebrations.

The tableau by different departments on themes like Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra, Aajevika se Aatmanirbharta, Har Ghar Nal Se Jal, and Vimalam Gramam – Swachhata aur Vikas ka Sankalp captured the essence of India’s progress and development journey. The impressive display of acrobatics, gymnastics, and dance performances showcased the rich history and heritage of Jammu and Kashmir, celebrating the spirit of unity in diversity and national integration.

  • District Court celebrations

Beyond the cultural extravaganza, the Republic Day was also celebrated with great fervour at the District Court premises across Kashmir. From Srinagar to Shopian, judicial officers, members of the bar, and court staff came together to honour the occasion with patriotic zeal and enthusiasm.

In Srinagar, Principal District & Sessions Judge Jawad Ahmad led the celebrations, underscoring the significance of Republic Day in the legal context. His words resonated with the audience, highlighting the pivotal role of the judiciary in upholding the constitutional values and ensuring access to justice for all citizens.

Similarly, in Budgam, Principal District & Sessions Judge Khalil Ahmad Choudhary emphasised the importance of upholding the Constitution and making India proud. His heartfelt address underscored the role of the judiciary in shaping the destiny of the nation and upholding the principles of justice, equality, and the rule of law.

  • A tribute to unsung heroes

Republic Day celebrations in Kashmir also paid tribute to the unsung heroes of the legal fraternity, who work tirelessly to uphold the values of justice and equality. From judges to lawyers, prosecutors to court staff, each member of the legal community plays a crucial role in ensuring the smooth functioning of the judicial system and upholding the principles of democracy.

  • The complexity of Kashmir and patriotism

In the midst of the Republic Day celebrations, Kashmir stands as a poignant reminder of the complex tapestry of patriotism and identity. The region, often hailed as the ‘paradise on earth’, has been marred by decades of political unrest and armed conflict. Yet, amidst the challenges and hardships, the people of Kashmir continue to display unwavering patriotism and resilience.

For generations, Kashmiris have borne the brunt of geopolitical tensions and internal strife, yet their love for their motherland remains unshakeable. Republic Day serves as a powerful reminder of the shared values and aspirations that unite all Indians, transcending regional, cultural, and linguistic barriers.

As the tricolour unfurls in the gentle breeze of Kashmir, it symbolises not just the sovereignty of the nation, but also the indomitable spirit of its people. The celebrations across the Valley are a testament to the enduring legacy of freedom and democracy, as Kashmiris reaffirm their commitment to building a brighter future for themselves and their children.

As the echoes of the national anthem faded away and the flags fluttered proudly in the Kashmiri breeze, the Republic Day celebrations across the Valley stood as a testament to the indomitable spirit of unity and patriotism that binds the nation together. From the bustling streets of Srinagar to the tranquil corners of Shopian, Kashmiris came together to honour the ideals of freedom, justice, and democracy, reaffirming their commitment to building a brighter future for generations to come.

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