As we celebrate India’s 72nd year of Independence, youths of Assam village are preparing to celebrate the patriotic day in a different way. At 11 am today, around 2000 residents of Uparkhuti village in Assam’s Baksa District will gather around the village chowk to carry out a procession featuring a 3.5 km long Indian flag. A registered organisation named Sunrise Youth Club, established in the year 2006, conceived the idea last year that aims to show that things have changed around the region. The tricolour flag has been stitched by six local tailors.
“We never hoisted flags, nor did we celebrate Independence Day before,” says Pawan Oli, secretary of the club who works for local youth-related issues. “We just want to say that we are living in peace now.” Baksa district is one of the four districts that belong to the Bodoland Territorial Aria Districts (BTAD) – and has for long been a ‘sensitive’ area, living in the grip of militancy. “But things have calmed down since BTAD was granted,” says Oli. The initiative is also an event for the honour of Assam Express Hima Das, the first Indian to win a Gold medal in a track event at the World Junior Athletics Championships in 2018 in Finland.
Video of the 3.5 Km Long Tricolour Indian Flag
In a telephonic interview with Youth ki Awaaz, Saurav Uprety of Suhagpur village of Baksa district said, “It is important to mention that the local tailors have not charged a single rupee for it. It will be almost the longest flag till the date.” The club members had floated the idea of making the ‘longest flag’ on last year’s Independence Day rally. “One of the tailors present at the rally last year had volunteered to stitch it. All he wanted was the cloth and ample time to stitch the flag,” said Oli. Rajasthan Human Chain, Formed to Thank the Armed Forces This Independence Day, Takes Over Twitter; See Pictures
The cloth reached Uparkhuti on August 1 and the tailors started stitching the flag on August 2. Prakash Darji, 32-year-old, said, “We suspended all our other work. The shutters of our shop have been down for the past 15 days. We have been working at the back to not get disturbed.” He further added that although he had faced monetary loss in business, he is proud to have done his bit in creating the longest Indian flag. The club gathered funds for the material through a donation drive.
Assam is known for the military, insurgency, unrest and ethnic clash for many years. There are several challenges the region is facing. The initiative taken by the club members is highly appreciated by district administration and local politicians. A local youth also said that they wanted to make this effort as world record and set the name in the Guinness Book of World Records, but they are facing the financial crisis to make it a reality for now.