Independence Day 2024

Indian Independence Day is an exciting time when the country comes together in unity and celebration on August 15 to honour everything that makes our nation great.

It has an essential solemn side, a time to reflect on the lives lost in the struggle to gain freedom from British rule in 1947. But it is a day of national pride and joy for the 1,4 billion people that call India home.

The day is marked by flag-hoisting ceremonies, parades, cultural programs, and patriotic songs. This year, you can make the celebrations even more special by involving your family in unique and meaningful ways, from making a card for Independence Day to full-scale street parades.

Historical Context

Understanding where we came from is vital to truly embracing the pride and joy that comes with Independence Day. British rule came slowly, not as part of a direct invasion, with traders establishing themselves across the nation under the Mughal Empire. However, as the power and influence of this Empire became eroded, the British started conquering different parts of India.

The Indian Rebellion of 1857 was a pivotal moment in the struggle against British rule. The spark for this uprising came when soldiers—both Hindu and Muslim—were asked to use gun cartridges greased with pork and beef fat, deeply offending their religious beliefs. Although the rebellion didn’t succeed in overthrowing British control, it led to significant changes. 

In 1868, the Government of India Act dissolved the East India Company and brought India directly under British rule. By 1877, Queen Victoria had been declared Empress of India, which meant that Indians were now recognised as citizens of the British Empire, with more rights than before.

India finally gained its independence from British rule on August 15, 1947, after a prolonged struggle marked by widespread non-violent resistance and civil disobedience led by figures like Mahatma Gandhi. This historic moment ended nearly 200 years of colonial rule, allowing India to finally become a sovereign nation.

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Celebrating Independence Day with Family

First and foremost, this is a day for celebration with your loved ones. Family, friends, children, students, colleagues and the people in your local community. Here are some simple activities that will allow you to easily get involved:

Fly Kites & Play Games

The skies of North India are a sight to see at this time of year, boasting a huge array of colourful and beautiful kites to symbolise the freedom and spirit of the nation. Families gather on their terraces, dressed in traditional attire, and enjoy this activity together. To make it even more special, you can organise a friendly kite-flying competition among family members. Play some patriotic music to enhance the festive atmosphere.

And for families with older children who may not be interested in kite-flying, there’s always the option of playing some traditional, pre-colonial Indian games like Satta Matta Matka, or Kabaddi if you want to enjoy the sunshine this coming Independence Day.

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Wear Tricolour Themed Clothes

Showing your national pride can be as simple as choosing to wear the colours of the Indian flag, India saffron, white and India green.

You can colour coordinate with your family or even entire classrooms or workplaces to create an atmosphere of fun, pride and unity on our national day. This simple yet meaningful gesture shows your love and respect for the country.

Community Celebrations

Honouring Independence Day is better done together, so seek out your local community events and take part to really feel connected to your country, locally and in a broader sense. 

You will find local groups singing, dancing, marching in parades, making gifts for each other and engaging in craft sessions to make flags and other patriotic symbols everywhere you go on Independence Day. 

Decorate Your Home

Community spirit starts at home, so show your national pride by decorating it with the tricolour theme and really making it stand out this Independence Day. 

There are many ways you can decorate your home including bringing the family together to create paper flags, rangoli designs, and tricolour garlands that will not only engage everyone in the family’s creative side, but bring everybody closer together on our national day.

Watch Patriotic Movies

To celebrate what we have, it is important to understand where we have come from. There are some truly incredible movies available that document the struggle for independence that can help build national pride while also educating the younger members of the family.

Patriotic films like Lagaan, Rang De Basanti and Chak De! India are excellent choices that evokes a sense of pride and patriotism. Watching these movies together can spark meaningful discussions about the country’s history and the sacrifices made for its freedom.

Read Books on India's Independence

Not everybody wants to celebrate in large and loud ways. Some prefer a more quiet and respectful approach towards honouring Independence Day and reading a book on our history is a great way to do that. 

Choose age-appropriate books for children, such as We, the Children of India by Leila Seth or The Story of India’s Freedom Movement by Subhadra Sen Gupta. For adults, books like India After Gandhi by Ramachandra Guha and Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie provide in-depth insights into the country’s history. Reading these books together can be an educational and bonding experience.

Cook Traditional Dishes

It is no secret that we love to cook in India and Independence Day presents the perfect opportunity to create a massive feast to share with our loved ones. Celebrate our diverse culinary heritage by cooking dishes popular in different regions of the country including a variety of snacks, main courses, and desserts. Involve your family in the cooking process, making it a fun and engaging activity and share the recipes and stories behind the dishes with your children, enriching their understanding of Indian culture.

Reflect on the Significance of the Day

No matter what activities you choose to honour our national day, ensure you take some time to reflect on the significance of Independence Day with your family. This is a time to help teach younger family members why they are celebrating and understanding the sacrifices that were made and the values the country stands for. Encourage each family member to share what independence means to them. This reflective exercise can deepen your appreciation for the freedoms you enjoy and inspire you to contribute positively to the nation.

In conclusion, Independence Day is a time for fun, community and celebrations but it is also important to reflect on the struggles that came before us to truly honour and respect the occasion. 

Take the time to join in the singing, dancing, cooking and gift-giving with a full heart, knowing that you are honouring the efforts of freedom fighters and the great Mahatma Gandhi that paved the way for India to enjoy the freedom we have today. 

Categories: Guest Post