Independence Day 2022 | ‘At the stroke of the midnight hour…’, watch, read Jawaharlal Nehru’s ‘Tryst with Destiny’ speech

HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY 2022: As India celebrates the 75th anniversary of independence, it calls for remembering the day India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, delivered the empowering “Tryst with Destiny” speech during the hours leading up to the eve of independence. Considered one of the greatest speeches of the 20th century, it welcomed a free and changing India.

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Nehru delivered the speech before the Indian Constituent Assembly in the Parliament building. The speech not only described the ups and downs the country has been through, but also mapped out the future which Nehru defined as the “relentless striving” to make dreams for India a reality.

Watch the glorious moment when “at the stroke of the midnight hour” India welcomed freedom with open arms:

Here is the full speech of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru:

Long years ago we made a date with fate, and now comes the time when we will redeem our commitment, not entirely or in full measure, but very substantially. At the stroke of midnight, when the world sleeps, India will awaken to life and freedom. A time comes, which comes only rarely in history, when we pass from the old to the new, when an era comes to an end, and when the soul of a nation, long suppressed, finds expression. It is fitting that at this solemn moment we pledge to dedicate ourselves to the service of India and her people and to the still greater cause of mankind.

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At the dawn of history, India began her endless quest, and centuries without a track are filled with her efforts and the grandeur of her successes and failures. By chance as by misfortune, she never lost sight of this quest nor forgot the ideals that made her strong. We are now ending a period of misfortune and India is discovering itself again. The achievement we celebrate today is just one step, an opening of opportunity towards the greater triumphs and achievements that lie ahead. Are we brave enough and wise enough to seize this opportunity and accept the challenge of the future?

Freedom and power bring responsibility. The responsibility rests with this Assembly, a sovereign body representing the sovereign people of India. Before the birth of freedom, we endured all the pains of labor and our hearts are heavy with the memory of this pain. Some of those pains continue even now. However, the past is over and it is the future that awaits us now.

This future is not one of ease or rest, but of unceasing efforts so that we can keep the commitments we have so often made and the one we will make today. India’s service means service to millions of suffering people. It means the end of poverty, ignorance, disease and inequality of opportunity. The ambition of the greatest man of our generation has been to wipe every tear from every eye. It may be beyond us, but as long as there are tears and pain, as long as our work is not finished.

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And so, we have to work and work, and work hard, to make our dreams come true. These dreams are for India, but they are also for the world, for all nations and peoples today are too intertwined for any of them to imagine that she can live apart It has been said that peace was indivisible; so is freedom, so is prosperity now, and so is disaster in this one world that can no longer be broken into isolated fragments. To the people of India, of whom we are the representatives, we launch an appeal to join us with faith and confidence in this great adventure. Now is not the time for petty and destructive criticism, nor for showing ill will or blaming others. We must build the noble abode of free India where all her children can dwell.

II

The appointed day has come – the day appointed by fate – and India is rising, after a long sleep and a long struggle, awake, full of life, free and independent. The past still clings to us to some degree and we have a long way to go before we redeem the promises we have so often made. Yet the turning point has passed, and history begins again for us, the history that we will live and act and that others will write.

This is a fateful moment for us in India, for all of Asia and for the world. A new star rises, the star of freedom in the East, new hope is born, a long cherished vision materializes. May the star never set and may this hope never be betrayed!

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We rejoice in this freedom, even though the clouds surround us, and many of our fellow citizens are afflicted and difficult problems surround us. But freedom brings responsibilities and burdens and we must face them in the spirit of a free and disciplined people. On this day our first thoughts go to the architect of this freedom, the Father of our Nation [Gandhi]who, embodying the ancient spirit of India, held high the torch of freedom and illuminated the darkness that surrounded us.

We have often been his unworthy disciples and have strayed from his message, but not only we, but future generations will remember this message and carry the imprint in their hearts of this great son of India, magnificent in his faith, strength, courage and humility. . We will never allow this torch of freedom to be blown out, no matter how windy or stormy. Our next thoughts must go to the Unknown Volunteers and Freedom Soldiers who, without praise or reward, served India unto death.

We also think of our brothers and sisters who have been cut off from us by political borders and who unfortunately cannot currently share in the freedom that has come. They are ours and will remain ours whatever happens, and we will be complicit in their good. [or] misfortune likewise. The future is before us.

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Where are we going and what will our business be? To bring freedom and opportunity to the common man, peasants and workers of India; combat and eradicate poverty, ignorance and disease; to build a prosperous, democratic and progressive nation, and to create social, economic and political institutions that will ensure justice and the fullness of life for every man and woman.

We have a lot of work ahead of us. There is no rest for any of us until we have fully redeemed our pledge, until we make all the peoples of India what fate intended them to be. We are citizens of a great country poised to move boldly forward, and we must live up to that high standard. All of us, whatever religion we belong to, are also the children of India with equal rights, privileges and obligations. We cannot encourage communalism or narrow-mindedness, because no nation can be great if its people are narrow-minded or narrow-minded.

To the nations and peoples of the world, we send our greetings and pledge to cooperate with them to advance peace, freedom and democracy.

And to India, our beloved homeland, the ancient, eternal and ever new, we pay respectful homage and rededicate ourselves to her service.

JAI HIND.

Following the speech, the members of the Constituent Assembly pledged to devote themselves to the service of the country and its people. India was finally freed from the clutches of British rule. Since then, on August 15, India’s Prime Minister has hoisted the national flag over Delhi’s historic Red Fort. Following this, the Indian national anthem, Jana Gana Mana, is sung.

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