Today is a national holiday in India that commemorates one of the most significant days in the country’s history. It was at midnight on this day in 1947 that India achieved independence from British rule and joined the family of sovereign nations.
Moments before midnight on August 15, 1947, India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, delivered his famous ‘Tryst with Destiny’ speech before the Indian Constituent Assembly. Shortly thereafter, the national flag of an independent India was hoisted for the very first time.
The central event of India’s Independence Day is the hoisting of the Indian flag by the Prime Minister at the historic Red Fort in Delhi, followed by an address to the nation from its ramparts. The day is also celebrated across India and in communities in Canada and around the world with parades and flag-raising ceremonies.
Canadians of Indian descent have played an important role in building our prosperous and pluralistic society, while taking great pride in their culture, heritage and traditions. Their contributions over the years have helped build the strong and diverse Canada we know today, and with India being among our top source countries for immigrants, they will continue to help shape our national story.
As Minister of Citizenship, Immigration and Multiculturalism, I wish all Canadians and Indians celebrating today a very happy Independence Day.
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