Since the dawn of independence, we have been striving to solve various problems facing the motherland to make her a united, democratic and solvent nation. What we have achieved is praiseworthy, what we have failed to achieve is deplorable. It is the right criticism that we could have achieved more than what we have achieved if we had possessed a missionary spirit and sacrificing attitude. On the contrary, our achievements are not negligible the light of circumstances in which the Britishers left us at the time of the transfer of power.
We received freedom under the shadow of communal disharmony. The moment, we held the reins of regime, we established our position and charged the atmosphere of horror and terror created by communal disharmony into an atmosphere of good will, co-existence and toleration. We taught the lesson of regard to different communities living in India. Thus, we decided to take the nation towards secularism. When we framed our Constitution, we expressed in a clear language that our aim was to make India a Secular State. In spite of the narrow-mindedness of the Pakistani leaders, who intended to make Pakistan a Theocratic State, we aimed at and succeeded in making India a Secular State. This is our first achievement of a great importance.
Consolidation of Indian States
India looked a storehouse of problems when the English people left us bag and baggage. The greatest problem was that of princely states. India then was in a condition of complete disintegration as nearly 562 ruling princes were raising their ugly heads. Sardar Vallabh Bhai Patel, the immortal son of mother India, and the Bismark of India, with his will-power and iron-will, unified scattered states dealing with them individually and collectively, as the situation was, and made India a compact whole. The States like Bikaner, Junagadh and Hyderabad had to surrender to the inconquerable will of Sardar. This is our second achievement of an outstanding merit.
A democratic stable government
India is the biggest democracy in the world. We have seen during the past few years that in many countries of the world and specially in the neighboring countries, democratic governments have been thrown out of power mercilessly and dictators have come into power. In spite of different castes, creeds and political ideologies, we have held four General Elections in complete peace. We are living under democratic governments in states and a stable government is at centre. It is really a miracle that democracy as a way of life, has been a success in India. It is our third achievement of international repute.
Disciplined police force and obedient army
We have maintained law and order throughout the length and breadth of the country. We have a disciplined police force and a highly efficient and obedient army. During the Chinese invasion and the Pakistani invasions, all the three units of our army showed excellent valor and obedience. Our police force, too, whenever called for sacrifice and services, did not show negligence and lethargy. We are proud of this achievement.
We have brought every department of life and the nation under well conceived planning. We have completed our Fifth Five Year Plan and have launched upon the Sixth Five Year Plan. Indians, individually and collectively, have become planning-minded. It is surprising that planning has entered into every house-hold of India. We are hopeful of the solution of all the problems by means of planning.
It is gratifying to note that the Indians have shaken off the effects of conservatism and fatalism and have begun to view these problems with a scientific outlook We have become conscious of these problems and have tightened our belts to solve them. There is a radical change in the psychology of Indians. This is our greatest achievement. Our outlook towards every problem economic, political, educational, national and international, is now progressive. But there is no occasion for self-complacency. A great many things are yet to be done.