Indian youths value R-Day but enjoy holiday moreJanuary 26th, 2010 - 12:22 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, Jan 26 (IANS) As the Republic Day parade rolled out here Tuesday, for several youngsters it was a day to revel in the holiday spirit. Staying in bed late on the foggy morning, while many didn’t care about parade preparations, a few said watching the procession on television was a traditional must.
As India began its 61st year as a Republic nation Tuesday, many youngsters said the day was just another national holiday. Only a few heralded the true significance of the day.
“I just woke up. But I am going to stay in bed - it’s so cold! Why would I wake up? Republic Day is a holiday for me. I sleep today!” said Amit Singh, a 26-year-old software engineer.
College student Priyanka Sharma said she felt the same way.
“Though I know the significance of Republic Day, it is another off day for me. However, I love to watch the parade on TV and I never miss it,” said 21-year-old Sharma.
Some of the Delhi youth have extended their weekend into Tuesday making small getaways.
“So what if it’s Republic Day? We have taken a holiday. The only thing republican about the day is the parade. We can catch that on TV. I have come to Jaipur with a few friends and will return Wednesday afternoon and join work,” Sanjeev Chopra, a marketing consultant, said.
A few however say the day holds special significance since it stirs patriotic sentiments.
“It feels great that we adopted our Constitution on this day so many years ago. But I think we need to amend our Constitution as the situation and circumstances have changed in the past 60 years,” said Prakhar Gupta, a 25-year-old accountant.
“Our history textbooks at school were a major bore. All I know about Republic Day is that we got our Constitution and that was the first time we had something to testify for our identity. But we are a republic every day, why should I feel patriotic only on one day?” asked Sruti Venkatesh, a 24 year-old film editor.
The Republic Day parade, that begins from Vijay Chowk on Rajpath and ends at the historic Red Fort eight kilometres away, is a colourful coming together of all that is traditional, modern and essentially Indian. It is witnessed by top dignitaries from the country and abroad as well as thousands of enthusiastic commoners, amid tighht security.
Some youngsters make it a point to attend the grand display in person as it makes them feel patriotic.
“I haven’t missed a single parade in the last seven years. Wherever I am in the world I make sure to be in Delhi on Jan 26. I think being present physically makes me feel committed to my country,” said Rakhi Gupta, a travel writer.
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