63 years old or 63 years young?
I would prefer to imagine that young is the word.
It is afterall, that youthful, zesty energy, the lust for life that defines my beautiful country, India. And young is the way it will be, for 63 years is merely the blink of an eye, in the shifting sands of time, millenia after millenia.
India, on the face of it, is undoubtedly chaotic. It is much like a bowl of spaghetti with innumerable strands of contradictions intertwined and messy enough to un-entangle.
But it is the tangy, fiery, spicy, bright red sauce that holds the strands of spaghetti together. That's true for India. The vibrant raw energy is what holds us together, despite the embedded and inherent contradictions.
But then there are those doomsday pundits, who cry to be heard, predicting that the worst is yet to come. They talk of Kashmir, of the Naxalites, of the Commonwealth Games fiascoes, of the decrepit state of urban India, of the great socio-economic divide.
True, these are problems, but they are not insurmountable.
We can tackle all this, the way we had tackled the really BIG issues that so bothered us very much, in 1947, in the hungry 1960s, turmoil filled 1970s, lacklustre 1980s and the economic disaster that struck us in 1990-91.
But to ensure that we, as a nation, handle all this, we need to need to rediscover ourselves, our potential, our capabilities, recognise our great demographic dividend that is almost bursting open. We need to revel in the contradictions and we will.
Metaphorically speaking, just as AR Rahman wrote "जय हो जय हो. आजा आजा जींद शामियाने के तले, आजा जरिवाले नीले आसमान के तले. जय हो." in his song, Jai Ho, we are, practically, standing under a star filled sky with innumerable opportunities, hopes and possibilities.
We need to rediscover our ourselves as a nation, that should be the agenda for each of us as wake up into the glorious morning, which happens to be our incredible nation's Independence Day, our Independence Day!
Let's all rediscover ourselves, our nation and rejoice in the liberty of a free India!!!!