Silchar, Aug 20: For all countrymen, the past few weeks leading up to the grand celebration of 76th Independence Day was a matter of great pride and grace. Responding to the call given by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hoist or display national flags under the 'Har Ghar Tiranga' campaign, people of Cachar district, along with millions of Indians, joined the celebrations with patriotic fervour and elan.
While the whole town of Silchar and other parts of Cachar district bathed in the spirit of national sentiment with tricolour fluttering high from August 13 to 15, there are many NGOs and association taking up the task of collecting the abandoned tricolours from across the town and its outskirts. Members of the local NGO Thunderbolts took pride in displaying another act - which is collecting the abandoned, half-torn and damaged flags littered across the town and others parts of the district.
Fakrul Alom Laskar, one of the founder members of Thunderbolts and present treasurer of the organisation, while talking to The Assam Tribune said, "We formed the NGO in 2012 when we were students. Since then, it has been our duty to collect damaged or half-torn flags, so that the respect and dignity of the national tricolour is not tampered with or hurt, on days following the Independence Day and the Republic Day every year. This year, while the enthusiasm among people was quite evident as they bought flags and participated in the 'Har Ghar Tiranga' drive, we collected 16 abandoned flags from various locations across the town. This was very disappointing and hurtful. However, the number of abandoned flags was much less compared to previous years. This is a welcome sign as people are becoming more aware about their duties to preserve and respect the national flag, which is our pride."
Laskar said that they had conducted awareness drives urging people not to litter the national flag after Independence Day. "Instead, they must take down the flags and keep them with due honour at their homes and establishments."
He said that appeals were still being made to those who haven't taken down the flags from their vehicles and residences.
It may be recalled that Cachar Deputy Commissioner, Rohan Kumar Jha, during a press conference held on August 9, had urged people not to abandon the flags as it gave a wrong impression. The DC had even said legal action would be initiated against the guilty if complaints of disrespecting the flags were received.