Tryst With Destiny
Yesterday, Sunday 15th August, was Indian Independence Day. Sixty-three years ago, Jawaharlal Nehru made his ‘Tryst with Destiny’ speech at the Red Fort in Delhi and declared India an independent nation after more than three hundred years of British occupation.
On Saturday night, the eve of Indian Independence day, the wonderful Meera Govil of Eltham Bookshop hosted an event at the Meeting Pool Restaurant at Monsalvat to celebrate both Indian Independence and the release of my novel India Dark. It was a fantastic evening. Although I talked about my book I think the highlight of the evening was when Meera’s father talked about being at the Red Fort at midnight and hearing Nehru address the huge crowd that had gathered. It was a major event in world history and it’s a bit sad that so many Australians are oblivous to it.
In Salman Rushdie’s famous novel Midnight’s Children all Indian children who were born in the hour between midnight and one a.m. of that day were blessed with magical powers. I love that about India – the way magic and world events so naturally blend together, the way the Indian people really know how to celebrate both small wonders and large moments.