New Delhi, Aug 15: Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi on Thursday said that in a democratic, resilient India, there is no place for bigotry and intolerance, yet millions encountered discrimination every day and urged party workers to rise as a nation to stand against every act of injustice, intolerance and discrimination to truly cherish our freedom.
"India has surged ahead exponentially in all arenas but at our core are the founding principles of truth, non-violence, compassion and unwavering patriotism", Ms Gandhi said after unfurling the National tricolour at the party headquarters on the occasion of Independence Day. The flag hoisting ceremony was attended by several senior leaders, including former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, former party president Rahul Gandhi, AK Antony, Motilal Vora, Ghulam Nabi Azad, Ahmed Patel, Kapil Sibal, Salman Khurshid, Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Anand Sharma.
"A democratic and resilient India at 73 has no place for bigotry, superstition, sectarianism, fanaticism, racialism, intolerance or injustice, yet millions of fellow citizens encounter discrimination every day," Ms Gandhi said. The Congress president also appealed to all to "reinvigorate the principles of compassion, coexistence and inclusive development as the indelible features of polity, society and economy."
The Congress president also said that the baton of building the nation and a modern, equal, just and egalitarian society founded upon scientific temper, is in the hands of the youth. Ms Gandhi also reminded the nation that independence was a result of huge sacrifices of those who made India what it is today, and said every citizen should observe the solemn duty of protecting and preserving the values of freedom, brotherhood, peace and equality.
"We must not forget the supreme sacrifice of our armed forces in protecting the integrity of India", Ms Gandhi said and lauded the role of farmers, labourers, artisans, scientists, tradesmen, teachers, artists, writers and thinkers in nation building. Ms Gandhi took over as the interim Congress president on Saturday after Rahul Gandhi resigned from Congress president post, taking responsibility of party's dismal performance in the last Lok Sabha polls.
Taking to Twitter, Mr Gandhi also greeted on Independence Day. Quoting Mahatma Gandhi, Mr Gandhi said, "Complete Independence will be complete only to the extent of our approach in practice to truth and nonviolence". My best wishes to all of you on this our 73rd Independence Day". (UNI)