My Selection was inevitable because of CL’s PDPP – Saurabh Shubham, XLRI and SPJAIN convert

PDPP has been of immense value to me. When I cleared the written exams, CAT, XAT etc., I had no inkling regarding how to commence my preparation. There was so much to read, so much to prepare in a short span of time. I had to prepare for all the recent happenings, I also had to  remember important statistics to quote during WAT and interviews. Besides all this, I had to prepare for all the HR questions which might be asked in the interviews. To sum it up and I am not exaggerating, it is a huge task to prepare for all this in one month.

I joined PDPP of Career Launcher, as soon as my XAT was over. This programme is so IMG-20190112-WA0028comprehensive that even if you do only the minimum that this programme asks of you, you would do well in the interview process. I had to first write a comprehensive essay about myself at least of 2500 words. I also had to answer around 10 questions regarding myself in the PDPP section of the CL website. Combined, these were more than sufficient to answer almost all the HR questions. If you spend enough time and write the essay and those answere diligently and honestly, your half of the preparation is done.

We also had a telegram group where we regularly discussed the current affairs topics. Sreeni sir made us join “BodhiTree” a telegram blog(sort of) where he shared important current affairs articles from various sources. Once he shared 20 hot topics to prepare which was so important that almost nothing was asked out of it in the interview process. In fact my WAT and GD in many processes went well due to those 20 topics. PDPP also provides you with mock GDs at your local CL centres.

Then I had a personal interview on skype with Sreeni sir. Though, PDPP provides you with 2-3 interviews with mentors, but if you follow the above mentioned process diligently, one interview is sufficient for you. The interview is catered to address your personality and profile specifically. I was asked questions from my work area and general current affairs some of which were asked verbatim in the actual interviews, later. Overall, I understood the gaps in my preparation and also got to know my strengths. The mentors are extremely experienced and knowledgeable and the mock interview experience is as rich as the original ones.

After the mock interview, Sreeni sir asked me which interview is first? As I replied SPJIMR, he told me you would crack it. You have prepared well. And I got selected as he had predicted. Later I also converted XLRI.

To conclude, I would only say that the idea of preparation for MBA institutes interview processes is daunting to say the least. The interview process is extremely grueling at times and if you have not prepared well, you would suffer as a result. What PDPP does is provide a structured guidance to your preparation, boosts your confidence.

  • It channelizes your time and energy towards things that are important so that you maximize your time utilization.
  • It also taught me how to prepare for any interview in my life.
  • It tries to make you visualize the bigger picture. What do you want from MBA, from your life?
  • How would the new technologies impact the different sectors and how would you align your goals with respect to these massive changes. Trust me, this is one of the biggest differentiators between you and other candidates. While the rest of people would talk about present challenges, you would be talking about changes 10, 20 years later and how would you relate these technological changes with the present.
  • The biggest change in my personality was my confidence. I was so confident during my interviews due to my preparation that I was smiling throughout. I remember that I was shivering during the interviews last year. Such was the positive impact of PDPP on me.

PDPP may not ensure that you crack the interviews on the D day but it will definitely ensure that you are one of the best candidates to be interviewed that day.

Thank you Sreeni sir for all the guidance and help. I moved my life in the direction in which I wanted to and a big part goes to PDPP and you. It would seem to many people that I got selected and thus I am praising the programme. I would like to mention that my selection was inevitable because of the preparation that PDPP provided.

Regarding written exams, I took two test series. You can take any two though I would personally suggest CL to be one of the series  because of LRDI and VARC sections. In the months of April and May I solved CL booklets for CAT which really helped me clear all the doubts. From June, I started to take mock tests and sectional tests. If you are starting now, I would suggest you devote two months for covering all the topics. From August you should take full length mocks. Till December, I took around 45-50 full mock tests. It is important to clear all the doubts however small in the initial stages so that later you can devote your time strategizing and planning time management. For VARC, I studied Economic times, The Economist and Hindu editorials daily. The Economist really helped as it covered different topics. Quant is a matter of practice and LRDI is all about patience, practicing different sets and understanding the question under time pressure. I hope it helps future aspirants in some way.

Regards
Sourabh Shubham

Converts XLRI and SPJAIN 2019

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“Thanks CL. You made me a person capable of knowing Myself” – Ankit, XLRI Convert

A few days back in college, a couple of juniors asked me, “Which institute or site would you suggest for MBA entrance preparations?”

 

“If your aim is to just crack the entrance exams, many institutes can make you do that, but if your vision of success involves getting into a dream B-School and have a thrilling lifelong journey even after that, then join Career Launcher because at the end, its all about how better you know yourself and CL enables you to do that” I answered.

This advice of mine is based on the stellar learning experience I had with CL. The beauty of my journey with CL has been the individuality which I have felt during the guidance right from the starting of entrance preparations to getting into one of the top B-Schools of India.IMG_20190507_150342_449 And this is going to continue beyond that also, owing to the continued guidance I expect to get from my CL Gurus.

After getting the results for CAT & XAT, the next big question was how to prepare for the Group Discussions, Writing Ability Tests and (of course) the Interviews! I turned to Shreya Jain (Ex-CLite; IIM-C 2018-20; Mentored at CL CP centre) for advice, the person who provided me an amazing guidance throughout my preparation. Her exact words were “Just join CL PDP and attend the first two orientation classes including Introduction to PDP and Goal Setting (more than once if you can). Everything will itself be taken care for afterwards.”

I was a bit shocked at the second sentence, but I understood why she said that after first day of PDP. I was a bit confused till then regarding the interview preparation. It was like I knew what I had to do but didn’t know how to do that. I knew a bit about my strengths and weaknesses but didn’t know whether they were enough to overcome the challenge. I knew I was passionate about doing an MBA but was doubtful of my potential. What goes in an exam preparation is not just hard work and studies, its about the emotional sentiments which take toll on an otherwise calm mind. And it is these moments which are considered make-or-break. So of course there is a pressure (from your own expectations, family, friends and of course other candidates) in these conditions and at the same time, few fears also.

 

While all these thoughts were going in my mind I entered the CP centre for my first PDP interaction and the next three hours were extremely inspiring. It was taken by Sreeni sir and truly stays till now the class in which I have enjoyed the most and learned the most. Till then I had fears- some rational, some irrational. After that class, irrational ones disappeared and in their place in my mind came the solution to the rational ones. Three hours went like a breeze. When the class ended and I came out, I saw the transition of 70+ faces from confusion and anxiety to calmness and excitation! And it was a surprise that he did all that without talking about the need or the challenge of making it to the top B-Schools, instead he talked about various things like the concept of IKIGAI, Circle of Concern and Influence, Disruptions in different fields, etc ( and what inspired me the most was his friendship story and how they started CL together ). The result was that instead of thinking about how I will get into a good MBA college, I started planning for how I will achieve my overall goals in my life and it really made me again think about the positive opportunities I had instead of the imaginary challenges. I was inspired.

Next day turned out to be equally fascinating. The class was taken by GP sir. What happened at the end of his class was that the 70+ faces turned from calmness and excitation to confidence and happiness. The knowledge he imparted to all of us was not regarding what to tell the interviewer to get selected but what to do, to know ourselves so well that we could be at ease with ourselves and be natural (an advice which would be of great help entire life). The ease with which all students were able to connect with what he was saying was inspiring. “Our potential can be a great motivation to us if we put it in the right direction with clarity of thought” was my main lesson from his claIMG_20190507_150333_027ss.

The next couple of weeks of PDP programme were truly awesome and the chill morning weather of the CP made that even more special. Enlightening Group Discussions with great minds from diverse backgrounds under the guidance of passed outs from reputed B-Schools, WATs practice, everything improved my perspective by great measures. I never imagined that preparations could also be so enjoyable. The ease with which the whole programme was designed, the booking system for classes, slot bookings for interview and general discussions with mentor- was truly phenomenal. I felt CL was like a mini trailer of what life at a B-School would be. Exciting and full of Opportunities.

The mock interview and discussions with GP sir remain the most special moments of PDP programme. I still remember when after the end of my first interview, we were discussing about my story till then and my mock interview, he said, “What you are right now creates more impact than what you were during the interview. You need to be completely truthful regarding yourself.” And after that he listened to all my concerns patiently and gave great advices. When I came out of his cabin, I felt like I was re-introduced to myself in those 45 minutes. The thing for which I congratulate the CL most is that they don’t pick students and then tell them who they are, instead CL makes a person capable of knowing the “SELF” and understanding their true potential. The simplicity with which CL gurus do that is what makes all the difference and is the secret recipe for success of Clites. As the time is limited between results and Interview preparation, one needs a very customized guidance to bring out his/her best qualities forward and CL did exactly that for me as well as my friends.

So the conversion of XLRI call is not what I have achieved but what my family, friends and CL motivated me to achieve. A great mind is not great till it is focused in the right direction and that is what CL PDP does with its students. The best part of the CL is that in an era when most of the people see you as competition, it was the warmth in the atmosphere of the Career Launcher which made me truly happy.

Now about me- Wanted to do Economics Hons but ended up with a B.Tech in ECE. Passionate about Economics. Interested in Human Psychology. Reading newspaper since 10 years. XLRI’te HRM soon. A proud CLite. Looking forward to continue learning experience at XLRI and make the institute proud.

Ankit Thakur

XLRI convert – 2019-21

“CL Prepared me for Life, beyond B-School” – Dishant, an IIMA convert, DTU Alum

My CAT journey with CL:

My name is Dishant and I am a final year student at Delhi Technological University (batch of 2019). Since the beginning of my curriculum in my institute I had an affinity towards doing an MBA after completing my UG degree. The reason for the decision can be owed to my hobbies of reading about great leaders and kings and also to my natural aptitude and proclivity towards the working of the world and the pursuit for reason.

I decided to focus on building my profile during my first two years and also exploring different fields to get a wider glance at each of them. I found interest in subjects like engineering maths and economics and got a chance to pursue research in the respective field under the tutelage of very able professors of my college. It was during the end of my sixth semester that I enrolled for the Premium batch for CAT-2018 in Career Launcher CP centre, the decision can be attributed to my interactions with the various representatives as well as mentors from the institute who instilled a new confidence within me to pursue my desire.

The journey within CL was a memorable experience, the classes especially the verbal ones were pretty informative and descriptive. The pedagogy was quite efficient and the sense of humour of the trainers was noteworthy. I cherished every moment spent within the class, which included interaction with top students from the best colleges across Delhi NCR. Apart from the curriculum, I also found the online resources quite useful, the Test Gym became my gym for the next couple of months, the presentation of questions and their segregation based on topics and difficulty never made me feel the need of a hard book.

Moving on to the months of June and July, I had to juggle between my internship schedule in Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC) and the classes, however I always found image1time to revise the concepts taught in class through the Smart CAT Cracker (SCC) resource which provided video lectures on demand taught by top CL faculties. With the beginning of the Mock CAT season we used to have a proctored mock every two weeks with an unproctored one in between, Mocks are an absolute necessity to cracking CAT and hence were not taken lightly, each mock result followed a percentile figure along with a detailed drill down analysis. The analysis part of the mock is the most crucial part for any aspirant, with the provision of section wise detailed performance indicators as well as comparative timings for each and every question I was able to gauge my performance along with my peers and identify any shortcomings in the particular test. The mocks were of varying difficulty level and each one of it provided me a new insight into the ways to approach a problem, the mocks for XAT and IIFT were also quite helpful. The only downside I found in the entire mock series was the predicted percentile which used past performance to come up with a range of percentile one can expect in CAT. I had a predicted percentile of 99.08 which was way below my expectations, however the teachers motivated me to overlook the figure and prove it wrong. Then came the D-Day 25 November CAT, I had the morning slot for the exam and it was surprisingly cold, during the frisking we were asked to remove our jackets, footwear including socks which had quite a numbing effect to the body owing to the cold temperature, then the exam began at exactly the scheduled time. The English section was surprisingly easy with a slight change in pattern, followed by a similar DILR section where I made a grave mistake of copying wrong info from a set, the quant section was the terminal section which I found to be a mixed bag contrary to the general opinion of difficulty and ended in a high note for me. Overall CAT-18 was a pleasant experience and I was confident of scoring enough to manage a call from at least one of the holy trinity, ABC. Next followed up exam was XAT and with the brimming confidence from CAT I was able to make the best of the exam.

The CAT results were declared in a month and half and I scored a 99.73 with a relatively higher score in the Quant section, while I had hoped of securing a 99.9+ the result was still satisfying for me. In the following days I received calls from all IIMs except for Bangalore which I missed by a minuscule margin. The XAT results were declared soon after and I had the biggest surprise of the year when the scorecard revealed a 99.992 figure, and a call from the XLRI BM program which was the only program I had applied for.

Next up was the CL Personality Development Program which was aimed at converting the secured calls through mock interview practice and personality sessions. Mr. Sujit Bhattacharya was allotted as my mentor for the program, I had almost 5 interviews with various mentors including GP sir, Arks sir and Shivku sir who guided me through the entire interview process. The program was not only focused on preparing for the interview but also focused towards the overall development and creation of a personality fit for the esteemed institutes. At the end of the season I was able to convert all of my top institute calls including- IIM-Ahmedabad, IIM-Calcutta, XLRI-BM and so on.

Summing it all up the best part of the entire journey was the PDP program with several information, practice session and the one to one interaction with the mentors. The mentors with a special note for Shivku Sir, Arks Sir, Sujit Sir and GP Sir were very helpful to me during the entire interview season, they not only helped me during interaction but were always available on call even during the oddest of hours. I still remember the time when I had a self doubt over my IIM-A interview and felt that I had missed the chance, I used to call Shivku sir and Arks Sir almost twice a day to pour out my emotions, they however always pushed the fact that I will make it no matter what perception of the experience I had in my mind, and alas their words came out to be true at the end. The interview sessions with Sujit Sir were an eye opener with his reasoning and sheer honest reactions to any answer. I was able to push myself to think deep over the questions like why MBA, and what after MBA, this opened up another dimension of thinking would stay with me forever. GP Sir with his everlasting optimism and Sreeni Sir with his multifaceted personality were always a source of motivation and inspiration.

It was with the help and support of all the mentors that I had been able to achieve the success of cracking my dream B-school and they truly deserve a commendation as one of the best teachers and mentors. Hence I would like to conclude by saying that CL not only prepared me for the B-School but for the life beyond it through traits of undying optimism, vision and worldly wisdom.

Now I know – who am I, what I want to be and how to get there – Happy Kukreja, XLRI entrant

How has the personalized mentoring in PDPP facilitated you ? How did that impact you, in what all ways?

Has it enabled you to create a compelling vision for life? Have you got reasonable amount of clarity of the path?

As all lost souls in pursuit of a guide, I knocked on the doors of Career Launcher, three months back, when I needed guidance and counsel for business school interviews. To be honest, I was a bit skeptical at first, and rightly so, I was entrusting myHappy IMG_7766 future, in the hands of strangers. Three months later, I can comfortably say, it was a good decision.

The scope of PDP personalised, as a programme, is too broad to simply write it off as an interview preparation tool. It allowed me to understand the ins and outs of my individuality. It started with the 10 questions, every PDPP student has to answer. They included simple, yet stimulating questions, like, ‘Who are you?’ and ‘What is your biggest achievement in life?’. These questions required a lot of introspection and contemplation on my end, as a result I was able to fully understand my individuality, my strengths, and my areas of improvement.

Now, this is something that one could do himself, how did PDPP help in this, one might wonder. Well, it was the gurus at Career Launcher, that enabled me to turn these strengths and weaknesses into instruments of impact in the B-school interviews.

How an ability to write a book can be turned into convincing evidence of superior leadership and management skills? Ask a CL guru, and prepared to be awed! This is indeed the best part. I wasn’t treated as just another student. I was treated as an individual, with unique strengths and weaknesses, and trained to turn my qualities into ammunition, to convince the interviewers.

Next, we come to the story. Every B-school interviewer looks for commitment towards a specific career in the aspirants. This is where all the interviewees need to have a story, a perfect chain of events, that point to the reason of going for MBA, and the specialisation one prefers. This is another area where a personalised story, based on my work ex, courses, certifications and academic record, was curated by CL gurus.

Another aspect of b-school interviews is the group discussions. A lot of top institutes across India, make GDs a part of the selection process. At PDPP, I got a chance to taste the cut throat competition beforehand by participating in over 10 GD workshops.

Another part of the selection process is the writing aptitude test. In the PDPP, I was able to take mock WATs and understood, what the business schools are looking for.

Apart from all this, I always had a mentor just a phone call away. Every doubt, query, was resolved within minutes. It is indeed an overwhelming privilege to be mentored by IIM alums on your way to IIMs.

In a nutshell, PDPP provided me a 360° view of business school selection process. From the story to interview etiquette to GDs and WATs to highlighting strengths and using weaknesses to further improve the chances of selection, I got great insights into everything.

But above all, it helped me, understand the different spheres of my personality. An in-depth understanding of my passions, interests, values, strengths and weaknesses, allowed me to fulfil the very purpose of the existence of knowledge and education, understanding thyself, and designing your life accordingly.

This has become a pragmatic reality because of the numerous interactions I had with CL gurus, who themselves, have a huge body of experience and expertise. In the personal interactions, I had with them, I was introduced to a world of possibilities, and different paths that lie ahead in life for me, the pros and cons of each, and most importantly, I was equipped with the knowledge and wisdom to decide, which path to venture upon in the journey of life.

I now have an understanding of the kind of person I am, both personally and professionally, and kind of person I want to be and how to get there!

Happy Kukreja

XLRI convert, 2019-21

Architecting Successful Career – Dr. Nomesh Bolia, Prof IITD

Prof. Nomesh bolia, IIT Delhi

Areas of Interest:

Operations Research, Stochastic Modeling, Application of MDP to various control problems, Application of OR to logistics and Economics

Education

  • Ph.D., University of North Carolina, Aug 2005-Aug 2009
  • B.Tech. , IIT Bombay

Nomesh2

Winner of multiple awards in the areas of his interests and research; Nomesh has also been involved in the areas of policy making, especially initiated the movements of Vision India foundation, Unnat Bharat Abhiyan

——————————————————

It was refreshing to see a young, 35+ something young gentleman who rose to address the parents and youth who are stepping into class XI at Sardar Patel Vidyalaya. Indeed, Nomesh, as he introduced himself humorously, he looked more like a fellow youth than a Professor at IIT D.  But, I must tell you, he is awe inspiring, by his vision, outlook and thoughts towards life.

Nomesh started by saying that it is very important to go by your instincts and not to follow any one else. It may be a struggle initially, to understand self, to figure out, but go through it to

– Get your fundamentals of life clear
– have a colorful, enjoyable journey of life
– Appreciate the diversity within and without

Pyramid
———–

Kindly look at your career and life as a pyramid, working from bottom to the top to have a meaningful and purposeful life.

Nomesh Pyramid

– What ever you pick up, the following are must

  • Be Focused and give everything
  • Put in your hard yards of work
  • Be analytical
  • Think out of the box

Nomesh went on to share the stories of youth, who discovered their calling, irrespective of where they started. I have known a few of them. I tried finding their talks and works on youtube to add some flavour to Nomesh’s sharing. Here they are. Will add the rest as soon as I find them.

Pranav misery – Sixth sense, working in the R&D of Samsung. An alum of an engineering college from Gujarat, goes on to work in cutting edge research and evolved sixth sense.

khurshed Batliwala – art of living

Lekh Bajaj – managing stress, IITM

nikhil raj – artificial intelligence, rest of life need not work

Nitin dhakad – jhabua – agriculture market

k subham – policy professionals, govt programs
Hamsa/Bhav – fighting elections
Ankit/me – Vision India – policy decisions related

So tell yourselves

– I do what I want to do
– you choose your pace and place

Nomesh went on to take a few questions from the parents towards the end

Q. What does one go for, if one wants to get into policy making?

Almost all the policy makers emerge from humanities. They understand the contexts and humanity
Economics and subjects from humanities in Class XI will be an ideal choice

Q. How do I find the Aptitude of my child ?
What they like and don’t like
Kindly observe and be aware
Read, read

Nomesh can be reached at nomesh@iitd.ac.in

Reading and its impact : This four-year old exemplifies

As a facilitator and mentor I invest time with children and youth. I urge and beseech them to be curious and inquisitive. The first step is to read and read, as many variety of issues, subjects as they come across. That is the only way to enrich oneself and in the process gain confidence to face people, interact, engage and enthrall.

I have been sharing with 20+ year olds that I shall chaperon my 7 year old daughter, whose felicity with language and articulation is far beyond mine, to their class to interact and also address them the importance of reading every day. Thankfully both my young daughters are passionate about reading and it has enriched me too.

Here I came across an amazing ambassador of reading. I love to share this short video to inspire each one of you. Thanks to one who recorded it and shared.

Hope this video initiates a few youth to be more keen about reading!

The greatest gift any parent can give a child is to invest an hour every day to read a book from the very early childhood. A pictorial story book with a toddler to amar chitra kathas and so on. Read in as many languages as possible – at least in all those that any adult at home can speak and read. The process will not only stoke language skills, but also imaginative and creative skills when you discuss.

Happy reading.

Pranab da on “Nation, Nationalism, Patriotism” : ‘Let’s work for Peace, Harmony and Happiness’ ! Jai Hind!

SPEECH OF SHRI PRANAB MUKHERJEE, FORMER PRESIDENT OF INDIA AT THE CONCLUDING FUNCTION OF THE THIRD YEAR ANNUAL TRAINING CAMP OF RASHTRIYA SWAYAMEVAK SANGH AT RESHIMBAGH GROUND TODAY

Nation, Nationalism and Patriotism

Greetings,

Sarsanghchalak Shri Mohan Bhagwat Ji, Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen
1. Today, I’m here to share with you my understanding of the concepts of Nation, Nationalism and Patriotism in the context of India, that is Bharat. These three concepts are so closely intertwined that it is difficult to discuss any one of them in isolation.

2. Let us make a beginning by understanding the dictionary meaning of these three words. Nation is defined as ‘a large group of people sharing the same culture, language or history and inhabiting a particular state or area’. Nationalism is defined as ‘identification with one’s own nation and support for its interests especially to the exclusion of interests of other nations’. Patriotism is defined as ‘devotion to and vigorous support for one’s country’.

3. Let us look at our roots,
India was an open society, globally connected along the Silk and Spice Routes. These busy highways of commerce and conquest witnessed a free exchange of culture, faith and invention as merchants, scholars and sages traversed mountain and desert and sailed the oceans. Buddhism reached Central Asia, China and Southeast Asia together with Hindu influences . Ancient travelers like Megasthenes in the 4th century B.C., Fa Hien in the 5th century A.D. and Hiuen Tsang in the 7th century AD; when they came to India, wrote about the efficient administrative systems with planned settlements and good infrastructure. Takshashila, Nalanda, Vikramashila, Valabhi, Somapura and Odantapuri comprised the ancient university system that dominated the world for 1,800 years beginning the sixth century BCE. They were magnets for the finest minds and scholars in the world. In the liberal environment of these institutions creativity found full form and art, literature, and scholarship flourished. Chanakya’s Arthashastra, an authoritative text on state-craft was also written during this period.

4. India was a state long before the concept of the European Nation State gained ground after the Treaty of Westphalia in 1648. This model- of a defined territory, a single language, shared religion and a common enemy- is the model which led to the formation of various nation states in Europe. On the other hand Indian Nationalism emanated from “Universalism” the philosophy of Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (वसुधैव कुटुम्बकम) and Sarve Bhavantu Sukhinah, Sarve Santu Niramayah. We see the whole world as one family and pray for the happiness and good health of all. Our national identity has emerged through a long drawn process of confluence, assimilation, and co-existence. The multiplicity in culture, faith and language is what makes India special. We derive our strength from tolerance. We accept and respect our pluralism. We celebrate our diversity. These have been a part of our collective consciousness for centuries. Any attempt at defining our nationhood in terms of dogmas and identities of religion, region, hatred and intolerance will only lead to dilution of our national identity. Any differences that may appear are only on the surface but we remain a distinct cultural unit with a common history, a common literature and a common civilization . In the words of the eminent historian Vincent Smith, “India beyond all doubt possesses a deep underlying fundamental unity, far more profound than that produced either by geographical isolation or by political superiority. That unity transcends the innumerable diversities of blood, colour, language, dress, manners, and sect” .

5. If we take a quick look at history the emergence of the Indian State can be traced back to the sixteen Mahajanapadas mostly spread across Northern India in the 6th century BC. In the 4th century BC, Chandragupta Maurya defeated the Greeks to build a powerful empire comprising of North-Western and Northern India. Emperor Ashoka was the most illustrious ruler of this dynasty. After the collapse of the Mauryan Dynasty, the empire broke into small kingdoms around 185 BC. Gupta Dynasty again created a vast empire which collapsed around 550 AD. Many dynasties ruled till 12th century, when Muslim invaders captured Delhi and successive dynasties ruled for the next 300 years. Babur defeated the last Lodhi King in 1526 at the First Battle of Panipat and firmly established Mughal rule which continued for 300 years. The East India Company after winning the Battle of Plassey in 1757, and the Three Battles of Arcot (1746-63) brought a vast territory in East and South of India under its control. A large part of western region was also annexed to the company’s territory and to administer these territories, a modern form of government was established in 1774. To administer these territories, the office of Governor General at fort William, Calcutta and two sub-ordinate governors at Madras and Bombay were created. For nearly 140 years, Calcutta was the centre of British Authority in India. However, the responsibility of administration was taken away from the East India Company in 1858 and the Secretary of State for India was appointed in the British Cabinet to super intend the Indian Administration.

6. Throughout this period of 2500 years of changing political fortunes and conquests, the 5000 year old civilizational continuity remained unbroken. In fact, each conqueror and each foreign element had been absorbed to form a new synthesis and unity . Tagore in his poem ‘Bharat Teertha’ says and I quote “……No one knows at whose beckoning call how many streams, of humanity came in indomitable waves from all over the world, over the millennia and mingled like rivers, into this vast ocean and created an individual soul, that is called Bharat”.

7. The concept of Modern Indian State found frequent articulation by various Indian organizations including the Indian National Congress towards the end of nineteenth century. Starting with Shri Surendranath Banerjee in 1895 at Pune, all Congress Presidents gave a call for an Indian Nation comprising the territorial areas of British India and the territories of 565 princely states. When Bal Gangadhar Tilak gave voice to the phrase coined by Barrister Joseph Baptista “Swaraj is my Birthright and I shall have it”, he referred to Swaraj for the Indian People – encompassing various castes, creeds, and religions, spread across British India, and Princely States. This Nation and Nationalism was not bound by geography, language, religion, or race. As Gandhiji explained Indian nationalism was not exclusive, nor aggressive, nor destructive. It was this Nationalism that Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru so vividly expressed in the ‘Discovery of India’, and I quote, “I am convinced that Nationalism can only come out of the ideological fusion of Hindu, Muslim, Sikh and other groups in India. That does not mean that extinction of any real culture of any group, but it does mean a common national outlook, to which other matters are subordinated”. In the process of our movement against British Rule, the various anti-colonial, anti-British and mostly progressive movements across the length and breadth of the country were unified into a cohesive national struggle for freedom, keeping the feeling of patriotism above their individual, ideological and political leanings.

8. We won independence in 1947. Thanks to the efforts of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, the Princely States merged leading to the consolidation of India. The complete integration of Provincial and Princely States took place after the formation of states on the recommendation of States Re-organisation Commission.

9. On 26 January 1950, the Constitution of India came into effect. In a remarkable display of idealism and courage, we the people of India gave to ourselves a sovereign democratic republic to secure for all its citizens justice, liberty, and equality. We undertook to promote among all citizens fraternity, the dignity of the individual and the unity of the nation. These ideals became the lodestar of the modern Indian State. Democracy became our most precious guide towards peace and regeneration from the swamp of poverty created by centuries of colonial rule. For us, Democracy is not a gift, but a sacred trust. The Indian Constitution, consisting of 395 articles and 12 schedules, is not merely a legal document but a Magna Carta of socio-economic transformation of the country. It represents the hopes and aspirations of the billion plus Indians. From our constitution flows our nationalism. The construct of Indian nationalism is ‘Constitutional Patriotism’, which consists of an appreciation of our inherited and shared diversity; a readiness to enact one’s citizenship at different levels; the ability to self correct and learn from others .

Delegates, Ladies and Gentlemen,
I want to share with you some truths that I have internalized during my fifty year long public life, as a Parliamentarian and Administrator.
10. The soul of India resides in pluralism and tolerance. This plurality of our society has come through assimilation of ideas over centuries. Secularism and inclusion are a matter of faith for us. It is our composite culture which makes us into one nation. India’s Nationhood is not one language, one religion, one enemy. It is the ‘Perennial Universalism’ of 1.3 billion people who use more than 122 languages and 1600 dialects in their everyday lives, practice 7 major religions, belong to 3 major ethnic groups- Aryans, Mongoloids, and Dravidians live under one system, one flag and one identity of being ‘Bhartiya’ and have ‘No Enemies’. That is what makes Bharat a diverse and united nation.

11. In a democracy, informed and reasoned public engagement on all issues of national importance is essential. A dialogue is necessary not only to balance the competing interests but also to reconcile them. Divergent strands in public discourse have to be recognized. We may argue, we may agree, or we may not agree. But we cannot deny the essential prevalence of multiplicity of opinion. Only through a dialogue can we develop the understanding to solve complex problems without an unhealthy strife within our polity.

12. Peaceful co-existence, compassion, respect for life, and harmony with nature form the foundation of our civilization. Every time a child or woman is brutalized, the soul of India is wounded. Manifestations of rage are tearing our social fabric. Every day, we see increased violence around us. At the heart of this violence is darkness, fear, and mistrust. We must free our public discourse from all forms of violence, physical as well as verbal. Only a non-violent society can ensure the participation of all sections of people in the democratic process, especially the marginalized and the dispossessed. We must move from anger, violence, and conflict to peace, harmony, and happiness.

12 A. We have lived with pain and strife for long enough. You are young, disciplined, well trained and highly educated. Please wish for peace, harmony and happiness. Our Motherland is asking for that. Our Motherland deserves that.

13. Happiness is fundamental to the human experience of life. To lead healthy, happy, and productive lives is the basic right of our citizens. While we have done well on our economic growth indicators, we have fared poorly on the World Happiness Index. We rank 133 out of the 156 countries mapped in the World Happiness Report 2018. Kautilya’s Shloka from Arthashastra, inscribed near lift No. 6 in the Parliament House says:
प्रजासुखे सुखं राज्ञः प्रजानां च हिते हितम् ।
नात्मप्रियं हितं राज्ञः प्रजानां तु प्रियं हितम् ।।
In the happiness of the people lies the happiness of the king, their welfare is his welfare. He shall not consider as good only that which pleases him but treat as beneficial to him whatever causes happiness to all people. Kautilya points out in this shloka very succinctly that the State is for the people. People are at the centre of all activities of the state and nothing should be done to divide the people and create animosity amongst them. The aim of the state should be to galvanise them to fight a concerted war against poverty, disease and deprivation and to convert economic growth into real development. Let the objective of spreading Peace, Harmony and Happiness inform the formulation of our public policy and guide all the actions of our state and citizens in their everyday life. This and only this will be able to create a happy nation, where Nationalism flows automatically.
Thank You
*Jai Hind*

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