Gujarat Gaurav Diwas 2017

Posted by The Open Page | 1st May 2017

Gujarat Foundation Day May 1, 1960   referred to as “Gujarat Gaurav Diwas “as the two states, Gujarat and Maharashtra were formed from the erstwhile Bombay state on May 1, 1960.
History narrates that after Indian Independence and the partition of India in 1947, the new Indian government grouped the former princely states of Gujarat into three larger units; 
Saurashtra, which included the former princely states on the Kathiawad peninsula, Kutch, and Bombay state, which included the former British districts of Bombay Presidency together with most of Baroda state and the other former princely states of eastern Gujarat. 
After Indian independence and the partition of India in 1947, the new Indian government grouped the former princely states of Gujarat into three larger units; 
Saurashtra, which included the former princely states on the Kathiawad peninsula, Kutch, and 
Bombay state was enlarged to include Kutch, Saurashtra (Kathiawar) and parts of Hyderabad state and Madhya Pradesh in central India. The new state had a mostly Gujarati-speaking north and a Marathi-speaking south. 
Agitation by Gujarati nationalists, the Mahagujarat Movement, and Marathi nationalists, the Samyukta Maharashtra, for their own states led to the split of Bombay state on linguistic lines; on 1 May 1960, it became the new states of Gujarat and Maharashtra.
Hence as we stand on the threshold of the 57 th Celebration of the Gujarat Foundation Day
We recall a few interesting and factual details of this progressive state of Gujarat   as it stands tall with a multitude of firsts to its credit like 
  • The premier management college, Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad ranks the best in India and among the best management universities in the world.
  • The National Institute of Design (NID) in Ahmedabad and Gandhinagar is internationally acclaimed as one of the foremost multi-disciplinary institutions in the field of design education and research. 
  • Centre for Environmental Planning & Technology University, popularly known as (CEPT) is one of the best planning and architectural school not in India, but across the world; providing various technical and professional courses.
  • The Space Applications Centre (SAC) is an institution for space research and satellite communication in Ahmedabad, India, under the aegis of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). 
  • Dr. Vikram Sarabhai, a renowned scientist, industrialist, and visionary Gujarati, played an important role in it. He also founded Physical Research Laboratory, a research institute encompasses Astrophysics, Solar System, and cosmic radiation. He also envisioned Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad, one of the internationally reputed management research institutes that is located in Gujarat's commercial capital Ahmedabad and is the top ranked management institutes in the country.
  • The state has the largest ship breaking yard in the world situated at Alangh, Bhavnagar.
  • Gujarat State has the Jamnagar Oil Refinery owned by Reliance Industries is the world’s largest Grass root oil refinery.
  • Forbes listed Ahmedabad as the third largest growing city in the world in 2010
  • The state of Gujarat is home to sixteen airports making it the state with the highest number of functioning airports in the country.
  • The Rann of Kucch best described as vast salt marshes covering 23,300 sqaure kilometers is India’s only nesting ground of greater Flamingos.
  • Gujarat has four national parks and 21 sanctuaries. It is the only home of Asiatic Lions and outside Africa is the only present natural habitat of lions.
  • Other National parks include Black Buck Sanctuary at Velvadar and Narara Marine National Park, Gulf of Kutchh, Jamnagar. 
  • Wildlife sanctuaries include: Wild Ass Wildlife Sanctuary, Nal Sarovar Bird Sanctuary, Porbandar Bird Sanctuary, Kutch Desert Wildlife Sanctuary, Kutch Bustard Sanctuary, Narayan Sarovar Sanctuary, Jessore Sloth Bear Sanctuary, Anjal, Balaram-Ambaji, Barda, Jambughoda Wildlife Sanctuary, Khavda, Paniya, Purna, Rampura, Ratanmahal, and Surpaneshwar.
  • Amul- a company worth more than 2.5 billion US dollars (as in 2012) was formed as a dairy cooperative in 1946 in the city of Anand, Gujarat. The cooperative known as Gujarat Co-operative Milk Marketing Federation uses  the Amul Model which is  seen as one of the best examples of cooperative achievement and success in a rural developing economy. 
  • The company stirred the White Revolution of India (also known as Operation Flood the world's biggest dairy development program, and made the milk-deficient nation of India the largest milk producer in the world in 2010.
  • Truly a land of diffusion of culture Gujarat, embodies the true spirit of Unity in Diversity, the blend of the modern with the traditional –a rich amalgamated confluence of various art forms  like music, literature, dances ,cuisine, fairs, textiles, theatre, architecture, religious practices  all exemplified in the varied museums, historical edifices, temples, mosques and places of worship that cri-cross the land and dot the varied landscape of this western state of the Indian peninsula.
Our own Garvi Gujarat has also nurtured some of India’s noblest sons who shaped Indian and world history:
  1. Mahatma Gandhi, who spearheaded the Indian independence movement against British colonial rule, was a Gujarati
  2. Muhammad Ali Jinnah, revered in Pakistan as Quaid-i-Azam  and first Governor general of Pakistan was from a Gujarati Muslim family in Rajkot.
  3. Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Independent India's first Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister, was from Karamsad
  4. Gujarat is also the home state of two Indian prime ministers – Morarji Desai  and Narendra Modi .
  5. Vikram Sarabhai, who was "Father of the Indian Space Programme" came from a family of Jain industrialists from Ahmedabad.
  6. Dhirubhai Ambani, founder of Reliance industries was from Chorvad, Gujarat.
  7. Azim Premji, software magnate and chairman of Wipro Limited is ethnically Gujarati.
  8. Pioneer industrialist Jamsetji Tata, who founded the Tata Group, one of India's biggest multinational conglomerates, came from a Parsi family of Zoroastrians in Navsari, and is considered the "Father of Indian Industry"
Gujarat was one of the main centres of the Indus Valley Civilization. It contains ancient metropolitan cities from the Indus Valley such as Lothal, Dholavira, and Gola Dhoro. The ancient city of Lothal was where India's first port was established. 
The ancient history of Gujarat was enriched by the commercial activities of its inhabitants. There is clear historical evidence of trade and commerce ties with Egypt, Bahrain and Sumer in the Persian Gulf during the time period of 1000 to 750 BC. There was a succession of Hindu and Buddhist states such as the Mauryan Dynasty, Western Satraps, Satavahana dynasty, Gupta Empire, Chalukya dynasty, Rashtrakuta Empire, Pala Empire and Gurjara-Pratihara Empire, as well as local dynasties such as the Maitrakas and then the Chaulukyas.
So today as Gujarat marches into the twenty first century bringing in prosperity and modernization for its people without diluting the traditions, we salute this land of milk and honey –Jai Garvi Gujarat. 
Article By:
Sheela Karia
Principal, Ahmedabad

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