With the mood saffron, green and white thanks to Republic Day weekend, the city will be replete with flag-hoisting ceremonies and cars will be flying little flags sold on traffic signals, like they always are. Many housing
societies traditionally have flag hoisting ceremonies after which members have a get together, where they get to know each other.
Yet, it is time we go beyond flag-hoisting ceremonies and symbolism to make R-Day significant and meaningful.
This city of enterprise has some walking companies organising special walking tours to sites of historical significance on R-Day. This is a welcome ‘step’ and though these tours have a commercial motive (they have to be paid for) they are one way in which one can actually feel history coming alive.
Some efforts are being made to include the disabled on these walking tours, which is once again worthy of applause. Let us make the physically challenged a part of R-Day. Whether it is walking tours, or access to sites of historical importance, let us push for ramps or even helpers for the disabled.
More good news comes in the form of a national flag, which has been made by a city institution. This flag is tactile and can be ‘felt’ by the blind. In this way, many visually impaired persons have an opportunity to experience the national flag in their own special way.
Finally, besides lighting up various monuments and congregating at different sites, it would be more meaningful if we keep these sites as clean as possible and fiercely guard against encroachment on our precious heritage. Already, the city has lost much through development and encroachment. Snap a salute to the tricolour and R-Day with these measures.