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In Photos: Celebrating Independence Day through iconic images from 1947’s India

Let’s travel back to the epochal day of India’s long-awaited liberation from the British Raj, and take a look at a mosaic of pivotal moments and iconic figures that collectively shaped the contours of our free nation. Through the lens of time, we revisit the faces, and the fervent aspirations that gathered to script an indelible chapter in the country’s historic narrative.

  1. Leaders gather for the 1947 meeting on partition: Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru (L), and Muhammad Ali Jinnah (R), with Sir Cyril Radcliffe (Centre), the man who was tasked with drawing the partition lines.                                                                      
  2. A Momentous Salute: Jawaharlal Nehru becomes the first Prime Minister of independent India, August 15.                  
  3. Addressing the Nation: PM Nehru speaks from the Red Fort on August 15, 1947. He delivers the famous ‘Tryst With Destiny’ speech, considered one of the greatest of the 20th century.                     
  4. Regal Carriage Ride: British Governor-General Lord Mountbatten and Lady  Edwina Mountbatten arrive in a stagecoach drawn by six horses. 
  5. Flag Hoisting at India Gate: Governor-General Lord Mountbatten (C) salutes the national flag, while Lady Edwina (2R) and Indian Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru (R) observe.                                    
  6. Celebrating Independence: Enthusiastic crowds converge around Rasina Hill in New Delhi, when over half a million people abandon scheduled drills and marches for exuberant celebrations.         
  7. Proud Moment: The Indian flag is hoisted in Chandni Chowk, New Delhi, on Independence Day in 1947.                       
  8. Farewell Departure: On August 7, 1947, at Old Delhi Station, one of 30 special trains prepares to carry staff of the new Pakistan government to Karachi, as Muslim League National Guards stand in honor of their departure.

Pictures: News Nations Bureau and other internet archives

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About the author

Hemlata Chouhan