Democracy is hard work. So what birthday wishes do I have? That I play my part in helping the world’s largest democracy to fulfill its glorious promise and destiny from the age of Ramayan to today. And that each of us recognizes that because one in six humans on this planet lives under that Constitution, it matters to all of us to help that democracy, India, because democracy is not easy. A patriot of the whole world would help, regardless of nationality, hold up the Indian Constitution. So I have four birthday wishes enshrined in the Indian Constitution:
Article 15 states, ‘The State shall not discriminate against any citizen on grounds only of religion, race, caste, sex, place of birth or any of them.’ My wish this year is to do more than ever as Co-Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Loomba Trust which helps widows in India and to continue the work with groups bringing women’s rights to the forefront and spreading the message from my book that more women entrepreneurs make more money to better protect themselves. Without the wealth of Lakshmi there can be no Democracy.
Article 21A; “The State shall provide free and compulsory education to all children of the age of six to fourteen years in such manner as the State may, by law, determine” My wish this year is that I am able to do more to highlight the amazing work for Akshaya Patra, for which which this paper and I have raised funds. Without education there can be no ‘world’s largest Democracy’.
Article 23; “Traffic in human beings and begging and other similar forms of forced labour are prohibited.” This year, my wish is to do more with International Justice Mission whose sole aim is to fulfill this article of the Indian Constitution – ending trafficking and forced labour in India.
Article 24: “No child below the age of fourteen years shall be employed to work in any factory or mine or engaged in any other hazardous employment.” This year, my wish is that we grow UnLtd, the social entrepreneurship charity of which I am a Director, which is helping fulfill this Article of the Indian Constitution.
Can we do all this? Is it not an impossible task?
‘And how can man die better; Than facing fearful odds; For the ashes of his fathers; And the temples of his Gods.’ Do, or die trying. We come from the land of the Ramayan – in which even a God faced fearful odds to save his wife from enslavement. We face fearful odds trying to make the Indian Constitution a reality. The Indian Constitution is a Constitution for the whole world, for Patriots of the world. Worth dying for, but even more, worth living for to make it a reality – because one in six humans on this planet lives under that Constitution and it matters for as long as there is government of the people, by the people, for the people on this small planet of our fathers and mothers.