In India, we celebrate a variety of religious festivals that bring people from different faiths together. Whether it’s Ganesh Festival, Navratri, Eid, Christmas, Navroz, or Lohri, these events show how we all live in harmony. People of different backgrounds participate, share food, decorate their homes, and visit places of worship. It’s a great example of India’s tradition of unity in diversity, where we respect each other’s beliefs in our diverse society.
Do you wonder why that might be? This is thanks to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, who united India at the time of independence. India was once divided into 562 princely states, each with its own unique culture and rulers. Sardar Patel’s relentless efforts and remarkable diplomacy brought these states together to form the modern Indian nation, showcasing the true essence of unity in diversity. It is in recognition of his monumental role in shaping a unified India that we celebrate his birthday as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas (National Unity Day), a poignant reminder of the importance of togetherness and the legacy of Sardar Patel’s vision.
Celebrated every year on 31 October, Rashtriya Ekta Diwas marks the birth anniversary of the “Iron Man of India,” Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, who played a pivotal role in unifying the diverse princely states to form the modern Indian nation. Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is not just a day to remember this iconic figure but also an occasion to promote the ideals of national integration, patriotism, and unity among the citizens of India. In this blog, we will delve into the history, significance, and various activities associated with Rashtriya Ekta Diwas.
History of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel was fondly known as the “Iron Man of India.” He was a prominent leader during the Indian independence movement. His remarkable efforts in persuading the princely states to merge with the Indian Union led to the unification of India as we know it today.
After its independence in 1947, India was still divided into over 562 princely states, each with its own ruler. Sardar Patel took on the herculean task of convincing these states to join the newly formed Republic of India. Through his persuasive diplomacy, he successfully integrated these states into a single, united nation, thus earning him the title “Iron Man.”
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s role in unifying the nation earned him immense respect and admiration. To commemorate his legacy and his relentless pursuit of national unity, the Government of India officially declared 31 October, Rashtriya Ekta Diwas in 2014.
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Importance
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas (National Unity Day) holds great significance in India for several reasons:
- Promotion of National Unity: The primary aim of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is to reinforce the importance of national unity and integration. It serves as a reminder of the diverse cultural, linguistic, and regional identities that coexist in India, emphasising the need for unity to maintain the nation’s integrity.
- Honouring Sardar Patel: This day is an opportunity to pay homage to the “Iron Man of India” for his tireless efforts in uniting the country. It acknowledges his pivotal role in shaping modern India.
- Strengthening the Bond of Patriotism: Rashtriya Ekta Diwas instils a sense of patriotism and love for one’s country. It encourages citizens to take pride in their Indian identity and work towards the betterment of the nation.
- Spreading Awareness: The day is marked by various educational activities and programs that raise awareness about the history, culture, and diversity of India. It educates the younger generation about the challenges faced during the nation’s unification.
- Promoting Volunteerism: Many social and community service initiatives are organised on Rashtriya Ekta Diwas to promote volunteerism and community engagement. These activities are an embodiment of Patel’s ideals of selfless service.
How is Rashtriya Ekta Diwas celebrated in India?
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Activities
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is celebrated in memory of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel with enthusiasm and fervour throughout India. Various activities and programs are organised to engage people from all walks of life.
Some of the most common Rashtriya Ekta Diwas activities include:
Run for Unity: The “Run for Unity” is a popular event held on Rashtriya Ekta Diwas where people from all age groups participate in a marathon to celebrate the spirit of unity and integrity. The run symbolises the unification of the nation and pays tribute to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Pledge-taking Ceremonies: Schools, colleges, government offices, and various organisations conduct pledge-taking ceremonies where participants vow to uphold the values of unity and integrity. This pledge reinforces the importance of these ideals in everyday life.
Essay and Speech Competitions: Educational institutions often organise essay and speech competitions, where students express their thoughts on unity and Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is a day where we should honour his contributions and through these competitions spread the message of unity in diversity.
Cultural Programs: To celebrate the rich cultural diversity of India, cultural programs featuring dance, music, and traditional arts are organised. These programs promote the idea that diversity is India’s strength.
Community Service Activities: Many volunteering activities are undertaken, such as blood donation drives, cleanliness campaigns, and serving meals to the underprivileged. These initiatives encourage individuals to contribute to the betterment of society.
Floral Tributes: People pay floral tributes at the statues and portraits of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in various places, including government offices and public institutions.
Quiz Competitions: Educational institutions often hold quiz competitions for students to increase awareness about the role of Sardar Patel in unifying India. You could also create awareness about this important day on social media through Twitter and Instagram stories You could use Instagram stories to conduct a quiz contest. Ask your followers questions like ‘When is the Rashtriya Ekta Diwas celebrated? ‘Which date is celebrated as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas in India?’ ‘Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is celebrated in memory of whom?’ ‘Why is Rashtriya Ekta Diwas celebrated? Doing this will not only educate them about this great man and his contributions, but it will also create awareness about the day.
- You could also take to a social media platform like X, formerly known as Twitter to share a meaningful Rashtriya Ekta Diwas slogan. We have shared some in point 10.
The Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Pledge: The Rashtriya Ekta Diwas pledge, recited by participants during the pledge-taking ceremonies, emphasises the commitment to unity and integrity. The pledge serves as a reminder of the responsibility that every citizen holds in maintaining the unity and security of the nation.
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Slogan: Slogans convey the essence and purpose of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas. They inspire and motivate people to come together and celebrate the spirit of unity. You can chant a slogan for Rashtriya Ekta Diwas and motivate your friends and family to do so.
Here is a famous Rashtriya Ekta Diwas slogan in Hindi:
“सरदार पटेल के सपनों को साकार करें, एक भारत श्रेष्ठ भारत!”
Here are a few more:
“राष्ट्रीय एकता हमारा गौरव है, हम सभी की शान है।”
“भारत का सर्वश्रेष्ठ समय, राष्ट्रीय एकता के नाम!”
Here is a slogan on Rashtriya Ekta Diwas in English:
“United We Stand, Divided We Fall!”
Here are some more:
“Strength in Unity, Progress in Diversity!”
“One Nation, One Vision, One India!”
By chanting a Rashtriya Ekta Diwas slogan, like the ones mentioned above, you play a key role in emphasising the importance of unity in the progress and prosperity of the nation.
Top 5 Books on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
If you’re interested in delving deeper into the life and legacy of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, there are several remarkable books that offer a comprehensive understanding of this iconic figure. These books not only shed light on his role in India’s struggle for independence but also on his pivotal contributions to the nation’s unity and development.
Here are the top 5 books on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel that you should consider reading:
“Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: Iron Man of India” by Balraj Krishna: This comprehensive biography offers an in-depth look at Sardar Patel’s life, his pivotal role in the unification of India, and his contributions to the nation’s development.
“Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: An Iron Man of India” by B.R. Nanda: This authoritative biography provides a detailed account of Patel’s political journey, his relationship with Mahatma Gandhi, and his tireless efforts in uniting the princely states.
“The Man Who Saved India” by Hindol Sengupta: This engaging book explores the life and legacy of Sardar Patel, shedding light on his accomplishments and the challenges he faced while shaping modern India.
“Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: India’s Iron Man” by Vinay Bharat-Ram: An insightful biography that not only delves into Patel’s political achievements but also his personal life, offering a more personal perspective on the Iron Man of India.
“The Integration of the Indian States” by V.P. Menon: While not a biography, this book by V.P. Menon, a close associate of Sardar Patel, provides a first-hand account of the challenging and intricate task of integrating India’s princely states into a united nation, led by Patel’s vision and determination.
These books offer an array of perspectives on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, his life, and his remarkable contributions to India. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, a student, or simply curious about one of India’s most revered leaders, these books will provide you with a wealth of knowledge about the Iron Man of India.
Top 5 Documentaries On Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
There are documentaries that touch upon Sardar Patel’s life and contributions as part of broader narratives on India’s history and independence movement. Here are five documentaries that include significant coverage of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel:
“The Story of India” (2007): A comprehensive documentary series by Michael Wood that explores the history of India. It features episodes on India’s struggle for independence and includes segments on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel’s role in unifying the nation.
“India’s Unifying Force” (2017): This documentary, part of the “Sanskriti: India’s Cultural Diversity” series, offers insights into the life and contributions of Sardar Patel. It delves into his efforts to unite India and his role in the integration of princely states.
“Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: The Architect of United India” (2018): A documentary that focuses specifically on Sardar Patel’s role in integrating princely states to form a united India. It provides a detailed account of his efforts and the challenges he faced.
“Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: Iron Man of India” (2016): This documentary provides a biography of Sardar Patel, showcasing his key role in India’s freedom struggle and the challenging task of nation-building that followed.
“India: A Nation’s Story” (2017): Part of the “BBC Newsnight” series, this documentary explores the story of India’s independence movement and the leaders who played a significant role, including Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Please note that the availability of documentaries may vary by region and time. You may want to check streaming platforms, educational institutions, and online resources for the latest documentaries on Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and India’s history.
FAQs related to National Unity Day (Rashtriya Ekta Diwas)
Q1: When is the Rashtriya Ekta Diwas celebrated?
A1: Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is celebrated on the 31st of October each year.
Q2: Which date is celebrated as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas in India?
A2: The 31st of October is celebrated as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas in India, commemorating Sardar Patel’s significant contributions to national unity.
Q3: Is Rashtriya Ekta Diwas a public holiday in India?
A3: No, Rashtriya Ekta Diwas is not a public holiday. It is observed as a day of national importance, and various events and programs are organised, but businesses and offices typically remain open.
Q4: Can non-resident Indians (NRIs) and people from other countries participate in Rashtriya Ekta Diwas celebrations in India?
A4: Absolutely! Rashtriya Ekta Diwas celebrations are open to everyone, including NRIs and international visitors. It’s a great opportunity to learn about India’s history, culture, and the significance of national unity. Many participants from various backgrounds come together to celebrate this day.
Q5: Are there any specific books or documentaries recommended for learning more about Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and the unification of India?
A5: Yes, several books and documentaries provide insights into Sardar Patel’s life and his role in unifying India. Some recommended books include “Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel: The Iron Man of India” by Balraj Krishna and “India After Gandhi” by Ramachandra Guha. Documentaries like “The Man Who Unified India” offer visual narratives of his life and contributions.
Q6: Are there any awards or recognitions associated with Rashtriya Ekta Diwas for individuals or organisations contributing to national unity?
A6: While there are no specific awards associated with Rashtriya Ekta Diwas, the day serves as a reminder of the ongoing need for unity and integrity.
October 31st in India is a day that commemorates the birth anniversary of the “Iron Man of India”, Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. Rashtriya Ekta Diwas (National Unity Day) serves as a reminder of the significance of unity and the need to preserve it in a diverse and multicultural country like India.
Through various activities, such as the “Run for Unity,” pledge-taking ceremonies, and community service initiatives, Rashtriya Ekta Diwas encourages citizens to embrace the ideals of unity, integrity, and patriotism. The pledges and slogans associated with the day reinforce the commitment to these principles and inspire individuals to work towards the betterment of the nation.
As India continues to progress and evolve, Rashtriya Ekta Diwas remains a day to celebrate the past, cherish the present, and aspire for a harmonious and united future. It is a reminder that the strength of a nation lies in the unity of its people.
In this era of digital connectivity and social awareness, crowdfunding platforms like Ketto play a significant role in promoting the values of unity, compassion, and collective action. Just as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas encourages citizens to come together and work towards the betterment of the nation, Ketto provides individuals with a platform to make a tangible difference in the lives of those in need.
Ketto is a crowdfunding platform where people are able to fundraise for a wide range of causes, including medical assistance, education, and animal welfare. It embodies the spirit of coming together to support one another, echoing the essence of unity and solidarity celebrated on Rashtriya Ekta Diwas.
As we celebrate the legacy of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and the ideals of national unity on October 31st, let us also remember the power of collective action in making positive changes in our society. Just as Patel’s vision and determination unified a diverse nation, platforms like Ketto enable us to collectively contribute to the betterment of the lives of those in need. It’s a reminder that unity and solidarity extend beyond boundaries, both geographical and virtual, and are crucial for building a brighter future for all.