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Lok Sabha speaker Shri Om Birla addressed the curtain raiser program of 75-week long AzadiKa Amrit Mahotsav celebrations to mark the 75th year of Independence today in Qila Rai Pithora, New Delhi. On this occasion Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Sh. Narendra Singh Tomar, Minister of Education Sh. Ramesh Pokhriyal ‘Nishank’, MoS Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports Sh. KirenRijiju, MoS Ministry of Finance Sh. Anurag Singh Thakur, MoS Ministry of Tribal Affairs Smt. Renuka Singh Saruta and Member of Parliament Smt. MeenakshiLekhi also addressed the event.

Archaeological Survey of India, Ministry of Culture along with Ministry of Youth Affairs also organised a Dastangoi (story telling) and Kathak performance at Qila Rai Pithora. The program is part of one of the curtain raiser activities that have begun beginning from today, 75 weeks prior to 15 August 2022. Earlier in the morning, the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi inaugurated the ‘AzadiKaAmritMahotsav’ event by flagging off a 241-mile march from Sabarmati Ashram in Ahmedabad to Dandi in Gujarat’s Navsari district.

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Invoking Maharaja Prithviraj Chauhan, Lok Sabha Speaker said that Rai Pithora Fort was one of the epicenters of India’s struggle against enemies. It is, therefore, the best place for organizing the “AzadiKaAmritMahotsava” on the 75th year of India’s Independence. Speaking on India’s democratic heritage, Shri Birla observed that although we are celebrating 75th year of our Independence from foreign rulers, India has a rich democratic and cultural heritage of thousands of years. In this regard, Shri Birla remembered the freedom fighters who sacrificed their lives for India’s Independence. He observed that despite incredible diversities, India has always witnessed smooth transfer of power which symbolizes our deep faith in democracy. 

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Talking about India’s progress during the last 75 years, Shri Om Birla said that India has made tremendous progress and it has opened new chapters of democratic empowerment. India has proved them wrong who doubted our democratic principles at the time of Independence. Through our commitment, dedication, hard work and collective efforts, we have overcome the challenges and made our democracy successful, Shri Birla emphasized.

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Shri Birla said that during the last 75 years, India has conducted seventeen general elections and more than four hundred Assembly elections. During this period,  many parties have formed governments and lost power but our grassroots democracy has strengthened.  Youth participation and participation of women in large number in election processes have strengthened our democracy. In this regard, he appreciated the leaders who played a pivotal role in giving India a good Constitution.

Remembering SardarVallabhbhai Patel, the Speaker said that Unity in Diversity is India’s strength.   Despite the linguistic, religious and regional diversities, we have succeeded in maintaining  our ‘Indianness’.  Lok Sabha Speaker further said that our target is “Ek Bharat Shresth Bharat”. It should be the endeavour of all, particularly the youth, to ensure that our every thought and action contributes to our national goal, the Speaker said.   

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Minister of Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare Sh. Narendra Singh Tomar said that we are going to celebrate Amrit Mahotsav for next 75 weeks and during this celebration, youth of the country will get to know how much sacrifices freedom fighters had madefor the freedom of the country. Shri Tomar added that youth of the country will get the opportunity to learn so many things during this Mahotsav, which will help in creating Shreshtha Bharat.

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Recalling Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s Mann Ki Baat address, wherein he had appealed to all countrymen, especially the young friends to write about freedom fighters, their struggles and their valour, Education Minister Shri Pokhriyal again called upon everyone to respect and write about them. Terming today as the historic day, Shri Pokhriyal said, on 12 March 1930 Mahatma Gandhi ji gave a new direction to the freedom struggle of the country. Saying that Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi today flagged off the Padyatra from Sabarmati Ashram, Ahmedabad to mark the AmritMahotsav celebrations of 75 years of independence, the Minister asserted that this yatra belongs to each and every individual, each and every countrymen. He urged everyone to take a firm resolve of ‘HarekKaam deshkeNaam’ for next 100 years and work in a mission mode to achieve this.

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MoS Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports Sh. KirenRijiju said that we will celebrate Amrit Mahotsav in next 75 weeks and on this occasion I request everyone to know about unsung heroes of country who gave their lives for the freedom of country. Shri Rijiju added that through this Amrit Mahotsav we want to honour real heroes of the country. Shri Rijiju further said that it is important to understand the difference between today’s India and what India was before 10-15 years back. Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has united India through Ek Bharat Shreshtha Bharat initiative, he added. Shri Rijiju further said that youth of the country will create a New India.

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MoS Ministry of Finance Sh. Anurag Singh Thakur said that India has a glorious past and through this Amrit Mahotsav youth of the country will get chance to feel proud. Shri Thakur added that this Amrit Mahotsav will also showcase our achievements of these 75 years to the world and also give a framework for moving ahead for the next 25 years. Minister further informed that 5 pillars have been decided for the celebration of the 75 years. These are Freedom Struggle, Ideas at 75, Achievements at 75, Actions at 75 and Resolve at 75.

MoS Ministry of Tribal Affairs Smt. Renuka Singh Saruta said that different programmes will be organised in next 75 weeks under this Amrit Mahotsav, which will inspire the youth.

Along with this the Archaeological Survey of India has identified 15 other sites – Gwalior Fort in Gwalior, Humayun’s Tomb in Delhi, FatehpurSikri in Agra, Golconda Fort in Hyderabad, Bhubaneswari Temple in Aizawl, Aga Khan Palace Building in Mumbai, Konark Sun Temple in Odisha, Kangra Fort in Himachal Pradesh, Residency Building in Lucknow, Jhansi Fort in Jhansi, the ancestral Home of DrRajendra Prasad in Patna, Chitradurg Fort in Karnataka, Man Mahal Ghat in Varanasi, Sankaram, Amravati and Deeg Palace in Jaipur where celebrations will begin marking the 75th anniversary of India’s Independence. The Archaeological Survey of India and Zonal Cultural Centres under the Ministry of Culture, Ministry of Youth Affairs and TRIFED have planned various activities to mark the occasion at these sites.

Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav is a series of events to be organised by the Government of India to commemorate the 75th Anniversary of India’s Independence. The Mahotsav will be celebrated as a Jan-Utsav in the spirit of Jan-Bhagidari.