Today I Ran for Unity of the Nation

Today 31st October is being observed as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas to commemorate the Birth Anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.

We all joined this morning to “Run for Unity.” The whole atmosphere at Marine Drive, opposite Air India building from where it all began, was full of energy with a spirit of rearing to go!

Some of our Cabinet Ministers joined us as did our, now Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis. All of them were in tune with us, in a spirit of camaraderie.

To tell the truth, when I was first told by our Collector City, Madam Shaila A. to spread the word for citizens to participate in the “Run”, I had a bit of apprehension as to how many will participate!

However, as I reached the venue I was elated, our networking partner groups had come from many places, as far as Kandivili and as near as C Ward and A ward! There were students, senior citizens, karate kids, NSS students and many dedicated runners, apart from all the Government and Police Officials, who were there to run too!

All of us a mighty mixed lot, smiling and chatting but with an underlying discipline. It was very noticeable as our Governor administered the Pledge in Hindi with all of us repeating with one strong voice.


The Pledge in Hindi is given below:

Rashtriya Ekta Diwas Pledge in Hindi


The Pledge in English is given below:

I solemnly pledge that I dedicate myself to preserve the unity, integrity and security of the nation and also strive hard to spread this message among my fellow countrymen. I take this pledge in the spirit of unification of my country which was made possible by the vision and actions of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. I also solemnly resolve to make my own contribution to ensure internal security of my country.

Having taken the pledge, how do we ensure that this IDEA of Unity remains with us and grows?

I am reminded of our great Sage-Swami Vivekananda’s saying -

Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life – think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success …


The Author, Indrani Malkani, is the Managing Trustee of V Citizens Action Network (VCAN) and is an Ashoka Fellow