Joe Biden highlights role of “vibrant community of more than four million Indian-Americans” in strengthening India-US partnership
India’s national flag flew at major landmarks, iconic public buildings were illuminated in its tricolors and greetings poured in from top dignitaries as India’s 75th Independence Day was celebrated with fervor across America.
In Washington DC, Indian Ambassador Taranjit Singh Sandhu unfurled the tricolor on August 15 with a call to rededicate oneself to transforming the dreams and aspirations of 1.3 billion Indian people into reality.
India-US relations have come a long way, he noted. However, given the true potential of the relations, there is a lot more that could be done. Sandhu also expressed keenness to connect the youth of both the countries, including through education and knowledge partnership.
In his message, President Joe Biden noted, “Over the decades, the ties between our people, including a vibrant community of more than four million Indian-Americans, have sustained and strengthened our partnership.”
“In this moment of great challenges and opportunities, the partnership between India and the United States is more important than ever,” he said. “Together, we must show the world that our two great and diverse democracies can deliver for people everywhere.”
“And as we do, the friendship between our nations will continue to flourish and grow,” said Biden wishing Indians “a safe and happy Indian Independence Day.”
The unfurling of the Indian flag in front of the embassy was followed by national anthem, A message from the President of India, Ram Nath Kovind was played followed by a cultural program.
The celebrations described as ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ (Grand festival of freedom) were attended by representatives from the community in accordance with health guidelines. Many Indians, members of Indian-American community and friends of India joined virtually.
Flag hoisting ceremonies were also held in all the five Consulates of India in US namely New York, Chicago, Atlanta, Houston and San Francisco, according to a press release from the Indian embassy.
Events were held in iconic and historic locations including Times Square in New York, Gadar Memorial and City Halls in San Francisco and State Capitol Building in Providence and Rhode Island.
Several events including India Day parades, India festivals, lectures, Battery Dance etc. were organized across the US by diverse community organizations as well as local administration to mark the occasion. Special receptions were held in Houston, Atlanta and Chicago, with participation of dignitaries from US.
Prominent buildings in US including the Empire State Building, New York, One World Trade Centre in Manhattan, the State Capitol Building in Providence, Rhode Island, Twin Towers in Dallas, Governor’s mansion in Austin, City Hall of San Francisco; and Gandhi Statue at King Center Atlanta were illuminated in tricolor lights.
Commemorative resolutions and proclamations were issued by various US States. The New York State Assembly passed a resolution commemorating India’s 75th Independence Day on August 15 and recognizing August 2021 as Indian American Heritage Month. Governor of Texas issued a proclamation on the occasion.
Leaders from the US including senators and House members, state administrations and legislators and dignitaries from diverse fields such as business, arts, sports and science conveyed their greetings.
Prominent members of Indian-American community including representatives of various socio-cultural organizations, members of the business community and others also expressed their felicitations.
In the run up to the Independence Day celebrations, there was enthusiastic participation from US in the ‘Rashtragaan’ (national song) initiative, with Indians and friends of India joining actively.
A series of events will be held in US in coming months to celebrate ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’, marking 75 years of India’s independence, according to the embassy release.