Independence Day: What freedom means to me

This Independence Day, we go beyond the usual idea of freedom and ask Australian Indians what it means to them in a more personal sense. Here's what they had to say.

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Living far from the homeland, Independence Day is an occasion for us all to mark our Indian identities. We celebrate our democracy and look at how far India has come since 1947. We sing our national anthem, salute the Tricolour and pay tribute to the personalities who fought for the freedom of our future generations.

Freedom. When we talk of this on Independence Day, it brings to mind connotations of the British Raj and its atrocities, the long-fought campaign for political independence, and the sacrifices of our freedom fighters.

This issue, however, we ask our readers to think beyond the usual and tell us what the word ‘freedom’ means to them in a more personal sense, and how it reflects the way they live their own lives in contemporary times.

Responses come from a cross-section of the Indian community in Sydney and Melbourne. Opinions range from escaping societal expectations, being able to worship the god they want, to freedom of sexual choice, and having the liberty to make mistakes and learn from them.

Some of these thoughts might mirror your own life, others might be food for thought. Read through, and tell us what freedom might mean to you.

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