18 June, 2021

15 August, 1947 Diary

As India celebrate the 70th Independence Day, an excerpt from Krishna Sobti's recollections of the first I- Day celebrations in the capital-- “Goron apne gharon ko lauto/ab yeh desh hamara hai, ab yeh raaj hamara hai"

15 August, 1947 Diary
Adam of the Yamuna

God knows who that fortunate, wise man was—an emperor, a sultan, a badshah, a shehanshah, a king, a crown prince, or for that matter, a holy man, an ascetic, a hermit, a peer-faqir or an ancestor of the Pandavas and Kauravas? The man who first set foot on these blessed banks of the Yamuna and resolved, in some auspicious moment, to set up a magnificent city here? Who, indeed, vowed to infuse life into this many-splendoured earth to keep it ticking and illuminated at all times, with all its lights and leaves, for centuries to come? So that the first draft would be echoed many times in its vicinity and beyond, in ever-new Delhis to its north and south, to its east and west, all teeming with life, throbbing with exuberance! So that the resplendence of one Delhi would spawn reflections all around. History stands witness to the fact that Delhi has never been shorn either of grandeur or of ruination. Chasing and vanquishing marauders...

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