Martyrs' Day was observed in New Delhi on January 30 to honour and remember the sacrifice of Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and others who died for the motherland. The president, the vice president, the prime minister, the defence minister, and the three service chiefs gathered at the samadhi in Raj Ghat memorial and paid homage to the great Indian leader.
On this occasion, as a mark of respect, the armed forces personnel blew bugles, and the inter-services contingent reversed their arms. Also, a two-minute silence in memory of Gandhiji and other martyrs were observed throughout the country at 11 am. In various cities of India, people held prayers and sang tributary bhajan to Gandhiji.
Gandhiji was assassinated at Birla House, now Gandhi Smriti, at 5:17 pm on 30 January 1948 when he was going to address a prayer meeting. Nathuram Godse fired three bullets into Gandhiji's chest from point-blank range. Godse and his co-conspirator were tried and executed in 1949.
Gandhi's memorial at Raj Ghat, New Delhi, bears the epigraph "Hey Ram" as Gandhiji's last words after he was shot. On the assassination, the then Prime Ministered Nehru had said, "Friends and comrades, the light has gone out of our lives, and there is darkness everywhere, and I do not quite know what to tell you or how to say it. Our beloved leader, Bapu as we called him, the father of the nation, is no more."
The best way to remember Gandhiji is to imbibe his words and ideas he stood for. Here are a few quotes of Gandhiji.
· A man is but the product of his thoughts what he thinks, he becomes.
· A man who was completely innocent, offered himself as a sacrifice for the good of others, including his enemies, and became the ransom of the world. It was a perfect act.
· A 'No' uttered from the deepest conviction is better than a 'Yes' merely uttered to please, or worse, to avoid trouble.
· An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind.
· Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.
· Even if you are a minority of one, the truth is the truth.
· Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.
· If patience is worth anything, it must endure to the end of time. And a living faith will last in the midst of the blackest storm.
· Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.
· Prayer is not asking. It is a longing of the soul. It is daily admission of one's weakness. It is better in prayer to have a heart without words than words without a heart.
· Spiritual relationship is far more precious than physical. Physical relationship divorced from spiritual is body without soul.
· The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated.
· The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong.
· There is a higher court than courts of justice and that is the court of conscience. It supersedes all other courts.