India on 15th August 2021 celebrated its 75th Independence Day. The occasion is being celebrated hundreds of miles away in Machhal, a small village in the border district of Kupwara, North Kashmir. The village witnessed unfurling of one of the biggest and highest National Flag by troops of Indian Army and local populace
of Machhal. Standing 100 feet above ground, with dimensions of 56 feet x 30 feet, the sight of the National Flag was eye alluring and remarkable. This particular flag is one of the largest unfurled close to the Line of Control. Apart from this, national flags
were unfurled in other villages of Machhal bowl at various schools and government buildings.Jammu and Kashmir recently witnessed the completion of two years of abrogation of Article 370. Many think tanks including local political parties believed that the consequences of abrogation of Article 370 would be detrimental to the region. However, the situation has proven to be completely opposite. It is heartening
to witness such an event in a small village like Machhal, which was unimaginable a few years ago. The participation of hundreds of locals including the youth was an eye catching event. The event started with the ceremonial salute by the Army
personals, stationed at Machhal. These gallant personals were accompanied by the young and local NCC cadets who proudly wore their uniforms and exhibited excellent pride and discipline by carrying out march past. The event also witnessed paying homage to the departed souls who gave up their lives for the nation. School children, young boys and girls and senior citizens from the nearby villages were present for the occasion. The unfurling of flag was followed by a cultural event organized by the local school children, where they presented patriotic songs and dance. A tea party was organized for all present at the occasion post culmination of the event.
Events like these present a different, positive and more vibrant narrative of
Kashmir which has seen enough bloodshed in last few decades. The abrogation of Article 370 has been a positive step in bringing the region out of backwardness.
However, the most important requirement is integration of the people of Kashmir with rest of India and giving them a sense of belongingness to this country. The initiative and participation of locals in events like these speak volume about the changing times. These events have prevented alienation of the locals and brought them closer to their very own nation in conformity with govt of India aim of their integration in main steam