National Unity Day 2019: On Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Jayanti, nation gears up to mark 'Rashtriya Ekta Diwas'

  • To commemorate Patel, the new government which was formed at the Centre in 2014 decided to celebrate 31 October as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas.

  • Patel the 'Iron Man of India', who had dreamt of full integration of Jammu and Kashmir with India, played an instrumental role in convincing several princely states to align with the Indian Union.

  • In October, 2018, Modi inaugurated the 'Statue of Unity', sculpted in Patel's honour in Gujarat, on the occasion of his 143rd birth anniversary.

National Unity Day 2019 | Since 2014, every year on 31 October 'Rashtriya Ekta Diwas' or the National Unity Day is observed to pay tribute to Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel – an Indian politician who played a pivotal role in India's freedom struggle and then during the integration of the country.

To commemorate Patel, the new government which was formed at the Centre in 2014 decided to celebrate 31 October as Rashtriya Ekta Diwas – in an announcement made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Patel, the 'Iron Man of India', who had dreamt of full integration of Jammu and Kashmir with India, played an instrumental role in convincing several princely states to align with the Indian Union. Therefore, 31 October is celebrated to honour his efforts and contributions.

 National Unity Day 2019: On Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Jayanti, nation gears up to mark Rashtriya Ekta Diwas

Sardar Patel's statue in Gujarat. Twitter/@PMOIndia

The Ministry of Home Affairs had made the announcement in a press release saying, "occasion will provide an opportunity to reaffirm the inherent strength and resilience of our nation to withstand the actual and potential threats to the unity, integrity, and security of our country."

In October, 2018, Modi inaugurated the 'Statue of Unity', sculpted in Patel's honour in Gujarat, on the occasion of his 143rd birth anniversary.

Located on Sadhu-Bet Island in Gujarat, the 182-metre tall statue occupies over 20,000 square metres and is surrounded by a 12-square-kilometre artificial lake.

Arrangements in full swing

On Patel's 144th birth anniversary this year, Modi will visit Kevadia in Gujarat to pay homage to the great leader at the Statue of Unity.

The prime minister is expected to participate at the Ekta Diwas Parade, visit the Technology Demonstration Site and later interact with Civil Service Probationers at Kevadia.

In his 'Mann Ki Baat' programme on Sunday, Modi had urged people to participate in large numbers in the 'Run for Unity'.

"Friends, as you know that 31 October every year since 2014 has been celebrated as National Unity Day. This day imparts the message to protect the unity, integrity and security of our country at any cost. On 31 October, this year too 'Run for Unity' is being organized like the previous years. It is a symbol of unison, that the nation being united, is moving in one direction and collectively aims for - One goal! Ek Bharat, Shreshth Bharat," he said.

Home Minister Amit Shah flagged off the commemorative 'Run For Unity' from New Delhi's Major Dhyanchand National Stadium at 7.10 am.

The run started at the stadium, where around 15,000 people have likely participated. Thousands of people, including the top political leaders, will run a marathon dedicated to Patel.

The run is expected lead to traffic congestion near India Gate. Keeping this in mind, the Delhi Traffic Police has urged people to avoid the C-Hexagon on Rajpath crossing and choose alternate routes.

The metro services in the national capital started functioning from 4 am from all terminal stations to facilitate 'Run for Unity' event participants.

In Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath will flag off the 'Run for Unity' in Lucknow, where the run will start from Patel's statue located near GPO Hazratganj and culminate at KD Singh Babu Stadium.

In multiple tweets, Adityanath has invited people to participate in the event in large numbers.

"Join me in 'Run For Unity' on 31 October, the birth anniversary of "Lauh Purush" Sardar Patel Ji. This year, the Run is special as after 70 years Jammu and Kashmir's integration with Maa Bharati was complete with scrapping of article 370," Adityanath tweeted.

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Updated Date: Oct 31, 2019 08:45:22 IST