Hear Ye! Republic Day (for) Sale!
How would you like to celebrate this Republic Day with a brand new iPhone? How about tracing the journey of the country while cruising in the latest hatchback, at a 25 percent discount? Or you could watch the R-Day parade in 4K on a 42” screen, for a whopper of a mega-super-bumper discount of 30 percent!
For India, the day 26 January is more than just an excuse to splurge on attractive discounts. Republic Day has, unfortunately, become the first in a line of festive occasions that have been swallowed up by consumerism. However, it is the one of the two days a year when one pauses to reflect upon the journey the country has taken to rise up from the ashes of the empire, and discover itself anew each year.
At over 1.4 lakh words, across 444 articles, the Constitution of India is the world’s longest. It took Bhimrao Ambedkar and his team of statesmen two years and 12 months to complete. It is this labour of love that continues to be relevant to India as a nation. It was only after the Constitution of India was drafted that everyone thought of the date, 26 January. It wasn’t a random date, but a time of reckoning for the British. So, on 26 January 1930, the Indian National Congress decided to fight for total Independence (Purna Swaraj) from the British.
Today, as we’re bombarded with offers of sale after sale after sale, let us pause for a moment to grasp the relevance of the day. Let us ponder on the necessity of remembering the birth of the idea of India, as the Sovereign, Socialist, Secular, Republic that the world often looks up to.
Hoist the flag, and bring in the chocolates. Happy Republic Day to you!