January 23, 2024
Holidays are given for political propaganda but not on the birthdays of ‘deshnayaks’: Mamata Banerjee
On the 127th birth anniversary of Netaji today, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee garlanded a bust of the freedom fighter on Red Road.
Highlights of her speech at the programme:
If we had followed what Netaji said before independence, the country have been much better off today.
He built the Indian National Army. He spoke of faith, unity and sacrifice. He wrote that without determination and dedication, one cannot do much in life. He also wrote that self-sacrifice and self-realisation are two sides of the same coin. He said you have to give 100 per cent to get 100 per cent.
If we have followed anyone, they are Netaji, Vivekananda and Ramakrishna. They played important roles in social reforms and political reforms.
Netaji had conceived of the Planning Commission. It is our misfortune that we never got to know what happened to the person who wanted to build a modern India. We know his birthday but not his day of death. We have put out in the public domain all the 64 files on Netaji that the Bengal government had. Before coming to power, the BJP government promised it would find out the truth about Netaji’s death, but it has not kept that promise.
Today, there is no Planning Commission, nor any plans about running the country. Planning has lost its way in the killings. A NITI Aayog has been created, but it has neither ‘neeti’ nor ‘aayog’.
Only that person can be called a leader of this country who has Hindus as well as Muslims, Jains and Christians on his side.
Netaji taught us to fight and to live a life worth living. It was Mahatma Gandhi who first hailed him as a ‘deshnayak’. Even after trying for 20 years, I have not managed to convince the government to make the birthday of Netaji a national holiday. I am asking you all for forgiveness; I am ashamed.
In this country, holidays are given for political propaganda but not on the birthdays of ‘deshnayaks’.