The political integration of India established a united nation for the
first time in thousands of years from a plethora of princely states,
colonial provinces and possessions. Despite partition, a new India
arose above demographic distinctions to unite peoples of various
geographic, economic, ethnic, linguistic and religious backgrounds.
India was transformed after independence through political upheaval
and ethnic discontent, and continues to evolve as a federal republic
natural to its diversity. The process is defined by sensitive
religious conflicts between Hindus and Muslims, diverse ethnic
populations, as well as by geo-political rivalry and military
conflicts with Pakistan and China. When the Indian independence
movement succeeded in ending British Raj on August 15, 1947, India's
leaders faced the prospect of inheriting a nation fragmented between
medieval-era kingdoms and provinces organized by colonial powers.
Under the leadership of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, one of India's most
respected freedom fighters and the Minister of Home Affairs, the new
Government of India employed frank political negotiations backed with
the option of military action to weld a nation.
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Today's selected anniversaries:
Jefferson Davis was inaugurated as the first (and only) President of
the Confederate States of America.
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain was first published.
It was both praised and banned shortly thereafter.
The Empire of Japan established Manchukuo, a puppet state in
northeastern China during the Sino-Japanese War.
Joseph Goebbels, Hitler's Propaganda Minister, delivered the
Sportpalast speech to motivate the German people when the tide of
World War II was turning against Germany.
An arsonist in Daegu, South Korea started a fire aboard a subway
train, killing two hundred passengers.
Wikiquote of the day:
"At some point in life the world's beauty becomes enough. You don't
need to photograph, paint or even remember it. It is enough. No record
of it needs to be kept and you don't need someone to share it with or
tell it to. When that happens — that letting go — you let go
because you can." -- Toni Morrison