The 25th anniversary of India's independence from Britain was marked on Monday night (14 August) with a solemn ceremony in the Central Hall of the Indian Parliament in New Delhi.
GV EXT. Parliament building New Delhi
GV NINT. Parliament President Giri & Mrs Gandhi enter & to dais
SV Giri speaks
GV Assembly rises - chant
SV Night EXT. Crowd chant & carry torchlight
GIRI: "Madam Prime Minister, Mr Speaker, Members of Parliament, comrades and friends.(INDISTINCT TRANSLATION). Twenty-five years ago, this day, almost at this hour, the Constituent Assembly met in this hall to herald India's freedom. That was an event which was unique in world history and has no parallel in the political annals of any country, ancient or modern. A mighty empire had bowed down to the indomitable will of an unarmed nation whose sole strength lay in the abiding faith of her people, in the power of spirit and of peaceful persuasion."
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Background: The 25th anniversary of India's independence from Britain was marked on Monday night (14 August) with a solemn ceremony in the Central Hall of the Indian Parliament in New Delhi.
At midnight on August 14, 1947, the first Indian Constituent Assembly ushered in independence and today's Parliamentarians re-lived the moment in another midnight ceremony.
Outside, several thousand people celebrated the occasion with a torchlight parade through the streets of New Delhi.
The Prime Minister, Mrs Indira Gandhi, said that in the last 25 years India had known failure and success, tragedy and triumph; yet Indians could take pride in the undeniable fact that today they were stronger politically, economically and socially.
Mrs Gandhi made her speech partly in English and partly in Hindi -- prompting a walk-out by members of the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) which is the majority party in the state of Tamil Nadu. The DMK has frequently protested against the use of Hindi rather than Tamil as India's national language.
In his address President V.V. Giri, said India's future task must be to build an equitable society in which there would be no economic exploitation.