the people of India and Bangalore .... Welcome You to join us in ....
Celebrating 50 Years of
We, the people of India,
having solemnly resolved to constitute India into a
SOVERIGN, SOCIALIST, SECULAR,
and to secure to all its
social, economic and political;
of thought, expression, belief, faith and worship;
of status and of opportunity;
- and to promote amoung them all
the dignity of the individual and the unity and the integrity of the Nation.
The preamble of our
Constitution given above envisages a strong and vibrant India and guarantees
Her Citizens Justice, Liberty, Equality and Fraternity.
Our India - Humara Bharat
In the making of the Indian Sub-Continent ..
The struggle for Indian Independence did not really come in
the 1930's, but was from the time the Country came into existance. Being
rich in different cultures, wealthy in minerals, India was peputually under
an invasion of one kind or another. The kingdoms fought within her bowels
and one tried to anhiliate the other. This struggle can be seen from the
passage of time from the Himalayas to Kerela, from Sind to Bengal. A brief
history is given below for a trip into the History of India. This will
be updated "era-wise" as and when I can find the time, please
excuse me for delays.
From the days gone by ...
Early Settlements ..
Signs of early settlements have been found at Mehrgarh where the Indus
Plains of North Western India meet the Baluchistan Hills. These settlements
show an agricultural background dating back to 8500 BC. In the next few
thousand years. settlements spread to the Eastern side of the Indus. Between
3000 BC and 2500 BC, new settlements sprang up in the mainland and became
known as the Indus Valley Civilisation. At the same time development also
took place in other countries of South Asia.
Some of the earliest civilisation that is preserved is that of the remains
of Moenjo Daro which goes back to before 2500 BC. South Asia had extensive
trade contacts with Mesopotamia. The culture was distinctively Asian and
had a language which is still partially deciphered, and which is an extension
of the Dravidian languages found today mostly in South India.
South Asia from around 1750 to the
The next period of time that is of relevance is from the time Moenjo
Daro became deserted around 2000 BC and over the nest 250 years the entire
Valley Civilisation disintegrated. Aryan invasion was said to be one of
the causes apart from the shift in the course of the Indus River, also
internal politics was listed as a cause to destroy what was at that period,
one of the most civilised of civilisations.
From around 1500 BC, the Northern Region of South Asia entered the Vedic
Period. Aryan settlers moved Eastward towards the Ganga Valley. The development
of different classes of people came into being - Rulers or Rajas and Priests
or Brahmins. The name of our country is said to derive from one of the
forceful tribes called the Bharatas. and the East of the Indus became known
Culture and Civilisation was widely spread through the land between
the two rivers Yamuna and the Ganga. It was here that Hinduism had its
roots. The Vedas came into being and developed into four sections called
Rig Veda, Sama, Yajur and Artha Vedas. Battles in the Mahabharata date
between 3100 BC to 800 BC.
Castes were created and divided mainly into three groups - the priests,
soldiers or rulers and ordinary people like traders and merchants - Brahmins,
Kshatriyas, and Vaishyas. These were given a high status in culture. There
was however, a fourth category added at the bottom of the ladder of hierarchy
called the Sudras or low born people, they were used as free labour or
bonded labour for menial jobs.
Trade in these regions created cities like Varanasi (Benaras). Taxila
and Rajagriha to name a few. One can surmise that these cities around the
foot hills of the Himalayas had a lot of Spiritual flavour as both Mahavir,
founder of Jainism and Buddha were born there.
The Mauryan Empire to the Guptas....
Who would deny that India was rich in culture. Alexander the Great marched
into the Indus conquering all in his path. After his withdrawal, Chandragupta
Maurya established the first so called indigenous empire since the Indus
Civilisation. His control extended to the South of India. The Mauryans
were based at Magadh which is now Bihar, and had a capital at Pataliputra
near Patna. The army is said to have had around 9000 elephants, 30000 cavalry
and 600000 infantry (foot soldiers). Chandragupta's successor Bindusara
stretched the empire as far as Mysore in the South of India.
In 272 BC, Asoka the greatest of the Mauryan emperors, took up the reigns.
He further extended his empire by defeating the Kalingans to what is know
as Orissa. His empire extended East to West from Afghanistan to Assam,
North to South from Himalayas to Mysore. Asoka later gave up war and went
about preaching the values of Buddhism. He left a series of inscriptions
on pillars and rocks across the Sub-Continent. One can be found in the
Indraprastha Fort in Delhi. The inscriptions were written in Prakrit, using
Brahmi Script, some were in Greek using the Kharoshti script. For over
2000 years they remained an mystery till James Prinsep deciphered the Brahmi
script in 1837. Asoka maintained good relations with King Tissa of Ceylon
(Sri Lanka) and the Cholas, Hoysalas, Pandiyas, Keralaputras and Satiyaputras.
After his death the successor could not administer the kingdom and it disintegrated
within 50 years.
Other Regional Kingdoms in India
during the same period...
Harsha had a brief reign recapturing some of the Gupta's territory.
The Rashtrakutas controlled the Deccan Plateau or Central Peninsula of
India. For the South the Dravidian lands (now Kerala, Tamilnadu and Coastal
Andhra Pradesh) were controlled by the Pandiyas, Cholas and Pallavas. The
Pallavas came to power around the 7th Century and built their temples at
Mamallapuram (Mahabalipuram), close to Madras (now Chennai). Madurai was
then their Capital.
The Cholas dominated Tamilnadu, S Karnataka and South Andhra Pradesh
from around 850 AD to 1278 AD. The also controlled Northern Ceylon (now
Sri Lanka). They also built many temples.
The Rajputs who may have originated from outside India, took over power
as the Gupta Empire ceased to exist. They also were famous for their temples,
a good example could be seen at Khajuraho.
The Delhi Sultanate...
Around 1000 AD, India was increasingly and being attacked by the Arabs
and Turks, Punjab was raided by the Mahmud of Ghazni. The Rajputs who were
always feuding among themselves were an easy pushover.
A series of raids from Muslim chief Muizzud Din and his deputy Qutbud
Din Aibak. Hindu opponents were defeated from Gwalior to Benaras. The Northern
part of India was controlled by the Delhi Sultans.
Another raider to India was the fearful Genghis Khan. Dynasties were
made up of refugees from Genghis Khan's raids, and the first to sprout
up was the Khaljis, followed by the Tughlugs, later the Sayyids, and then
the Lodis. The land being so vast and the only way the Delhi Sultanate
could keep control was to build large fortifications at various places
and station small garrisons of troops, to maintained lines of communications
and trade routes.
The only Hindu Empire that resisted the Muslim advance were the kings
of the Vijayanagar Empire. The ruins at Hampi show the strength of the
Hindu coalition who were very powerful during the first half of the 14th
Century, but however got defeated in 1565. The empire spread over Tamilnadu,
Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.
The Mughal Rule....
The rule of 150 years of the Delhi Sultans showed a loss of Kashmir
and Bengal to independent Muslim Sultans. Mughul rule dominated Indian
politics from 1526 Babur's victory near Delhi to Aurangzeb's death in 1707.
These were the blood line descendants of Tamerlane (Timur) and Genghis
Khan. One thing that came out of all this was some magnificent architecture,
the best in the world, and showed harmony of man, poetry, love and devotion
to God. Some of the Mughuls that were known in Indian History are Sher
Shah, Humayan, Akbar, Bairam Khan, Jahangir, Nur Jahan and Aurangzeb.
The Mughul Empire soon deteriorated and Sivaji and his Marathas became
a force that the Mughals could not easily deal with. Some of the rebellious
Muslim kingdoms joined with Sivaji. The fear of Sivaji is remembered in
the famous encounter of the Bijapur General Afzal Khan sent to make a settlement
with Sivaji in private, Sivaji embraced him with steel claws attached to
his fingers and tore him apart.
The East India Company and the formation
of a new British Colony...
The next on the scene in India was The East India Company which led
to the formation of the British Colony which ruled India for 200 years.
Figureheads like Robert Clive, Warren Hastings, Lord William Bentinck,
Marquess du Dalhousie, Lord Cubbon, Duke of Wellington, Lord Mountbatten
to name a few, stand out in the history of Colonial India. The British
however, did not have it easy, they were opposed by the Sikhs in Punjab,
the Marathas in the West and the Mysore Suntans. Haidar Ali and the Tipu
Sultan ( known as the Tiger of Mysore) was a thorn in the British side.
To top it, the famous Indian Mutiny of 1857 which saw the loss of many
a trooper and officer. The quelling of the Mutiny saw the end of the Mughal
In March of 1857, the Magistrate of Muttra found four chupatties
on the table in his office. A man had brought them to the watchman with
instruction to make four like them and take them to the watchman in the
next village who was to do the same. Others were given five chupatties
and told to give five to each of five other villages. Soon chupatties were
were being delivered all over the North West Provinces. It was estimated
that they could be delivered to a distance of over a hundred miles overnight.
No one knew why the chupatties were being distributed, but the watchmen
felt that some calamity would befall them if they did not run through the
night with chupatties in their turbans.
Mainuddin Hassan Khan, a police officer, reported that his father
had told him that upon the downfall of the Mahratta power, a sprig of millet
and morsel of bread had passed from village to village. The distribution
of bread may have signified some great disturbance would follow immediately.
Rumours abounded from the simple -- lotus flowers, brinjal leaves,
and goats' meat were being passed from hand to hand among the sepoys --
to the rediculous -- Russia had conquered and annexed England and the entire
English population had been decimated to fewer than 100,000 people. Rumours
also tied the new cartidges to the chupatties and to a supposed plot to
Christianize the whole of India.
British officers refused to believe the sepoys in their own regiments
could be misled by idle talk. While mutinies were not unknown, the Indians
did not consider mutiny to be the terrible crime that the British did.
The Hindustani word for mutiny is ghadr but does not really mean more than
faithless or ungrateful. The mutinies of 1806 at Vellore and of 1824 at
Barrackpore were forgotten.
Briefly, the army mutineed in India in 1857. In January of that year,
new Enfield rifles had been issued to to the 60th Rifles (a European regiment)
at Meerut and later they were issued ten rounds of a new ammunition. When
the same ammunition was issued to the 3rd Light Cavalry, a native regiment,
in April the men refused to touch it. They had been informed that the ammunition
had been greased with both pork and beef fat. The men agreed not to touch
the new ammunition unless all other regiments also agreed to handle it.
The cartridges had to have the ends bitten off before loading and
firing. Muslims could not touch pork and Hindus could not touch beef. The
men were assured the new ammunition was not in use at the station but they
did not believe their officers. Because the brass could not lose face,
they insisted on going ahead with a parade which required firing blank
cartridges. And on 24 April, the 3rd Light Cavalry refused to accept the
cartridges. They were confined to their lines. A court-martial was convened
and all the men who refused the ammunition were convicted and sentenced
to 10 years hard labor.
On Saturday 9 May 1857 all the troops at Meerut were assembled on
the parade ground in a three sided square with the convicted men marched
to the open side. There were 1700 European troops all armed and a larger
number of native troops unarmed. The convicted men were stripped of their
uniforms, boots removed and ankles shackled. They were marched off to New
Gaol. As they passed, several of them threw their boots at Colonel Carmichael-Smyth,
cursing him in Hindustani. That night warnings were received that there
would be a mutiny the next day. The colonel, the brigadier, and the major-general
all dismissed the idea.
At six o'clock the next evening, Sunday 10 May 1867, the native infantry
set fire to their barracks and within a short time a full-fledged armed
mutiny was underway. By midnight the mutineers had moved out in an armed
column for Delhi. The next day saw a massacre of Europeans in Delhi. Mutiny
spread to Muttra and Lucknow by the 30 of May and to Bhurtpore by the 31.
On June 5 the 2nd Cavalry mutinied at Cawnpore followed by the mutiny of
the 6th NI at Allahabad. the next day. the massacre at Jhansi was on the
8th of June. The police in Lucknow mutinied on June 11. The massacre at
Cawnpore took place on 27 June. Fighting continued throughout the next
year finally ending at the Battle of Gwalior on 19 June 1858.
There was a great deal of unrest prior to the mutiny and the East
India Company was abolished in November 1858 because of bad management.
You can see that there was a great deal of violent history during 1857/8
and a lot has been written on the Mutiny. Please visit your library. I'm
sure you will be fascinated and horrified at the whole mess.
(Thanks to Roger Hillhouse, for
his cool rendation of the Mutiny above, firstname.lastname@example.org
San Diego, California)
In 1885, the Indian National Congress was found, and this really was
the first serious struggle for the Independence of India. Later in 1906,
the All-India Muslim League was found to protect the interests of the Muslims.
Mohandas Karamchand Ghandi returned to India in 1915 after a stint of
20 years as a lawyer in South Africa. The Bengali Nobel Laureate Poet Rabindranath
Tagore referred to Mohandas as "Mahatma" and the name remained,
and he became Mahatma Ghandi.
There were many sad incidents that took place during the struggle of
Independence and many were jailed in prisons without trial, some were hanged,
but one incident is still scarred in peoples minds that of the killing
of around 379 people and injury to over a 1000 at Jallianwala Bagh in Amritsar
by the troops under General Dyer.
Part of the demands by the Congress as early as 1930 to have the Independence
day as January 26, instead it has become the Republic Day. Pakistan was
being given a name - a coined word by a Muslim student at Cambridge - Chaudhuri
Rahmat Ali ( P for Punjab, A for Afghania, K for Kashmir,
S for Sind with a suffix - stan, which in Persian means country).
The formation of India and Pakistan
... the Independence
Because of the difficulties in the population of Muslims and Hindus,
there was also the differences of leadership of Mohammad Ali Jinnah and
Jawaharlal Nehru, a move was made to have a different State for Muslim
and Non-Muslim. Independence came with the Partition of India and Pakistan.
Pakistan got her independence on 14th August 1947, and India on . Lord Mountbatten the last Viceroy had the
honour to oversee the transfer of power to the newly formed countries.
The British did leave us a few examples, such as Military discipline, Education,
Communications, a good Government Administration and infrastructure along
with their beautiful buildings, tolerance and respect of Religions and
many other things that did not really leave India too far back from the
rest of the world, and ofcourse, how could we forget, the universal communicating
language of English!!
The Partition left a bitter struggle between the Hindus, Muslims and
Sikhs which threatened to set fire to the whole country and tear it apart.
People began to move from India to Pakistan and vice versa. Nearly 13 million
people migrated between the two countries. It was unfortunate that many
lost their lives due to this. India is now the second largest Democratic
Country in the World after the United States, and is proud to be 50 Years
Old in Independence, leading the way in many fields of Science, Technology,
Mathematics, Commerce, Trade and many others.
There are other Sites on the Internet that may give you more upto date
information and much more content.
Thank you for visiting us here in India, and joining us in our celebration
of 50 Years of Independence, Jai Hind!
The Voice of Independent
What Our Country
Freedom is a great gift of God to humankind. As we enter the historic
landmark of 50 Glorious years of our Independence, we take pride in our
freedom. Our freedom is precious. How can we continue to uphold this status
in our country? How can all receive the benefits of freedom in our country?
We have human rulers to rule
us. But God is the supreme ruler of all Nations. He wants justice to be
done to everyone. God is aware of the prevailing condition of our Country.
"I am the LORD, and I know
your terrible acts. You cheat honest people and take bribes; you rob the
poor of justice. Times are so evil that anyone with good sense will keep
quiet. If you really want to live. you must stop doing wrong, and start
doing right. .... Let justice and fairness flow like a river that never
Freedom calls us to practice
God has ordained human rulers
and institutions to maintain Liberty among people. We as citizens are to
obey these authorities.
"The LORD wants you
to obey all human authorities espically the one who rules.
... you are free, but still
you are God's servants, and you must not use your freedom as an excuse
for doing wrong. Respect everyone, .... honour God and respect the rulers."
Freedom gives Liberty to
do good to all.
God as supreme ruler wants us
to promote equality among people irrespective of social status, religion,
"My friends, if you have faith
in God, you won't treat some people better than others ... (when) you treat
some people better than others, you have done wrong, and the scriptures
teach that you have sinned."
Freedom encourages equality
What does God as ruler require
from people who enjoy freedom?
"Love the LORD your God with
all your heart, soul and mind. This is the first and most important commandment.
The second most important commandment is like this one. And it is 'Love
others as much as you love yourself' "
Freedom promotes fraternity.
As we stand on the threshold
of a new era, let us practise these teachings of the Bible to overcome
the problems that come in the way of progress. Let us reaffirm our commitment
to build a better India in Justice, Peace and Prosperity as the Founding
Fathers of our great Nation hoped for.
Scripture passages are taken from the following references of the Holy
Bible (CEV) Amos 5:12-15,24; I Peter 2:13, 16-17; James 2:1,9; Matthew
22:37-39; John 14:6a, 8:32
(The "Voice of Independent
India" is an abstract taken from the "We
the people.." brochure of The Bible
Society of India, 206 M.G. Road, Bangalore 560 001, Ph: 5584657. Kind
Permission to use given by Dr. B.K. Pramanik, Chief Executive)
Links to Indian Sites
You are welcome to browse some of the Web Pages that relate
to India. Should you find something on these Sites that is against
Indian Tradition and Hospitality and Culture, please inform me so that
I can delete the reference links immediately.
A Bangalore Newspaper
Vispi Homi's India
of India - Ranka Group
Vispi Homi's India
British Links to India
Kathy Gordon's India
Links to Indian
Discover India - Ministry of External
Chronology of Bharat
India is such a vast country and only a little percentage of
her beauty, culture, people can be written about on such a little space.
It would take volumes and days to go through all the collections available.
I have mentioned only a few that I the peasure to visit.
Creating Net Sites
(You can get your free home page from Geocities)
Send an e-mail to the One and Only Bangalore
This page was prepared on August 13th 1997
for August 15th, 1997 the Day on which India got her Independence from
the United Kingdom 50 Years ago August 15th, 1947!!
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