Chennaiite reminisces I-Day celebration during his childhood

Chennai: Post Independence Day, ‘News Today’ had an enthusiastic conversation with a senior citizen at Porur in the city.

Retired Tahsildar, A Raman residing at Kolapakkam recollected sweet memories of the special day.

This 83-year-old senior citizen was born in 1935 in Chennai.

Raman said,”I have vague memories of what happened during my childhood. I remember seeing group of men wearing Gandhi Kulla or Kadhar cap protesting. They chanted ‘Vande Mataram’ in loud tones. All of them held Congress flags. Their voices grew strong and they chanted slogans such as ‘Vellaiyane Veliyeru’ and ‘Engal Naadu Engalukku’.”

These protest he said also extended to schools. “A number of institutions insisted its students oppose whites and protest for our nation’s freedom. Our school is one among them. In spite of Britishers banning us not to render freedom songs, they made us sing. I remember singing songs like, ‘Achhamillai Achhamillai’, ‘Viduthalai Viduthalai’, ‘Aaduvomey Pallu Paaduvomey’ during our assembly time. Even as I recalled those memories, I can feel the patriotism that prevailed during those times,” said the octogenarian.

‘On various occasions I have spoke on freedom struggle in my school. Many local freedom fighters of that time have given me awards for my speech,” recalled Raman with a smiled.

He added, “I was asleep on that night when we got independence. In the morning everyone in our street was celebrating. People were distributing sweets. I joined them and we all shouted ‘Bharat Matha Ki Jai’, ‘Nehru Ji Ki Jai’, ‘Gandhiji Ki Jai’, ‘Viduthalai Viduthalai’.”

“I didn’t understand then why we shouted such slogans. But today I am proud that I was there at that time,” he concluded. Raman can be reached at 94444 87454.