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70 years of Independence: India's stories of triumph; Green Revolution to Mangalyaan, Pokhran to GST

As India ushers into its 70 years of independence, the nation has come a long way in creating a distinct Identity of its own among the nations of the world.


  |  Updated On : August 01, 2017 06:30 PM
Independence Day - File Photo

Independence Day - File Photo

New Delhi :  

As India ushers into its 70 years of independence, the nation has come a long way in creating a distinct Identity of its own among the nations of the world. A country bestowed with legacy of rich and diverse cultural heritage has kept its core traditions and made gigantic leaps in the field of science & technology, space and economics.

On the eve of the 71st Independence Day, India is seen as one of the emerging powers in the new world order. India is on the cusp of being labelled as fully developed nation and shedding its tag of developing nation. India growth story has been spearheaded by great statesmen, eminent educationalist and corporate visionaries who envisaged a path of a sustained development for the nation.

Be it social reforms, the untiring efforts of our space mission under the aegis of ISRO to showcasing its prowess as a nuclear power by conducting Pokharan, the nation has achieved some milestones to garner the respect and admiration of the world seven decades after independence.

The landmark economic reforms in the form of liberalization, demonetization and the Goods and Services Tax have paved way for a cleaner, transparent and buoyant economy. The motherland has to endure its share of difficulties in the form of thwarting foreign aggression and enduring natural calamities. The armed forces fought valiantly and made supreme sacrifices to safeguard the territorial integrity and sovereignty of our nation.

So here are some landmark moments that charted the course of Indian history over the last seven decades

First Parliamentary Election – 1952:

For a newly independent democracy, conducting a free and fair election on an enormous scale over The large geographical expanse, the first general election of 1952 was a test of people’s will to firmly banish foreign rule through democratic empowerment. The success of the electoral process, keenly followed and watched by global agencies, did entrust the Indian National Congress with the right to form post-Independence India’s first democratically elected government.

Green Revolution – 1960s and 1970s

The Green Revolution in India was a period when agriculture in India increased its yields due to improved agronomic technology. Green Revolution allowed developing countries, like India, to overcome poor agricultural productivity. It started in India in the early 1960s and led to an increase in food grain production, especially in Punjab, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh during the early phase. The main development was higher-yielding varieties of wheat, which were developed by many scientists, including Indian geneticist M. S. Swaminathan,American agronomist Dr. Norman Borlaug, and others.

1971 India-Pakistan War and Birth of Bangladesh

The armed forces successfully thwarted the foreign aggression by Pakistan to safeguard the nation’s territory integrity in 1965. However, it was the 13-day decisive 1971 India-Pakistan war that stands out as an inflection point in the nation’s history. It was on December 16, 1971 that Pakistan Armed Forces signed the instrument of surrender, putting an end to the war. The war paved the way for the formation of an independent nation in Bangladesh out of what was East Pakistan.

Nuclear Test at Pokhran - 1974

India proved its prowess among the military powerhouses of the world by entering the nuclear club in 1974 after carrying out its first nuclear test at Pokhran. India has abided by nuclear non- proliferation, laying emphasis tapping nuclear energy for peaceful purposes.

India’s first Satellite Aryabhata  - 1975

India took a giant leap in its space odyssey by launching its first satellite Aryabhatta in 1975. The satellite was named after the 5th century scientist of the Gupta Period. It was launched by India on 19 April 1975 from Kapustin Yar, a Russian rocket launch and development site in Astrakhan Oblast using a Kosmos-3M launch vehicle. It was built by the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) to gain experience in building and operating a satellite in space.

Operation Flood, launched in 1970, was a project of India's NDDB, which was the world's biggest dairy development program. It transformed India from a milk-deficient nation into the world's largest milk producer, surpassing the USA in 1998, with about 17 percent of global output in 2010–11. In 30 years it doubled milk available per person and made dairy farming India’s largest self-sustainable rural employment generator

Triumph of democracy, End of Emergency – 1977

The imposition of emergency in the county June 26, 1975 by President Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed, on the advice of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi surely went down as perhaps the darkest hour in the political history of India post-Independence. The faith in democracy was restored when Indira Gandhi called for elections on January 23, 1977, released all political prisoners and success of Janta Party at the vote to put an end to the period remains one of the finest moments in the history of the nation.

Liberalisation of Economy in 1991

In the last decade of the twentieth century, India realized that opening up its economy was the need of the hour in order to foster domestic growth, infuse capitalism and become competitive in the global market. In response, Prime Minister Narasimha Rao, along with his finance minister Manmohan Singh, initiated the economic liberalisation of 1991. The reforms did away with the Licence Raj, reduced tariffs and interest rates and ended many public monopolies, allowing automatic approval of foreign direct investment in many sectors. India opened its gates to the global market and initiated economic liberalization in 1991

Right to Information -  2005

India became one of the few nations to enact the fundamental Right to Information in 2005.The Right to information act empowers the citizens to demand responsibility from public servants. It throws light on issues of poor governance and holds public administrators accountable for the lack of their duties.

India becomes polio free nation – 2011

Years of successfully running the pulse polio campaign reaped huge dividends. After January 13, 2011 no polio case has been reported in India. Only in 2009, the country accounted for half of the world’s polio cases but for more than two years (after a two-year old girl was paralyzed by polio in Howrah district of West Bengal on January 13, 2011) no case has been reported from anywhere in the country.

Mars Orbiter Mission Mangalyaan mission - 2013

India became the first country to reach the Mars orbit in the very first attempt. The whole world turned their heads to ISRO’s Mangalyaan mission which successfully reached Mars in its maiden flight. It was launched on 5 November 2013 by the Indian Space Research Organisation. It is India's first interplanetary mission and ISRO has become the fourth space agency to reach Mars, after the Soviet space program, NASA, and the European Space Agency.

Goods and Services Tax (GST) was a landmark economic reform initiated by the Narendra Modi govt to bring unfirmity in the indirect taxation system. It which introduced in India on 1 July 2017 and was applicable throughout India which reduced the effect of  multiple cascading taxes levied by the central and state governments. It was introduced as One hundred and first ammedment, following the passage of Constitution 122nd Amendment Bill. 

First Published: Tuesday, August 01, 2017 05:40 PM


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