In 1929 Lahore session of the Indian National Congress party, the president Jawaharlal Nehru gave a call for “Poorna Swaraj” or “Independence Declaration of India for freedom”. 26 January was chosen as the Independence Day for India between 1930 and 1946. It was celebrated with huge meetings and gatherings. People from all caste or group would join and do some social work for the benefit of people of all the religions.
It was on 20 February 1947 when the British parliament summoned the last viceroy of India Lord Mountbatten to transfer the power to British India by June 1948. Clement Attlee was the Prime Minster of British government that time. However, Lord Mountbatten advanced the date to 15 August 1947.
Why was 15 August chosen as Independence Day of India?
Lord Mountbatten advanced the date of freedom for India to 15 August 1947 opposed to June 1948, which was earlier decided by the British Government. He chose 15 August 1947 as the Independence Day for India because it was the second anniversary of Japan’s surrender in World War II.
The Indian Independence Act 1947 of British Parliament partitioned the Independent India into two independent states; India and Pakistan. Later this act then received royal assent on 18 July 1947.
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According to this both India and Pakistan got independence on the same day I.e. 15 August 1947. However, Pakistan celebrates it on 14 August every year for two reasons. One, the transfer of power of states, which was held in Karachi, took place on 14 August 1947. In addition, the reason is 14 August 1947 was very auspicious day of Ramadan for them.
Jawaharlal Nehru was chosen to be the first Prime Minister of India. Muhammad Ali Jinnah was appointed as the first Governor General of Independent Pakistan.
However, British government approved freedom to India but it was done on very heavy cost. Millions of Sikh, Muslims and Hindus faced massive bloodshed while crossing borders. People crossing borders had to lose their home and family members. Starting life with scratch from beginning was one of the worst challenge for most of the people after Independence.