Officially known as Kalyana-Karnataka Liberation Day (Vimochana Diwas), Hyderabad-Karnataka Liberation Day is an important annual observance celebrated across various districts of Karnataka, India. This event, held on the 17th of September each year, commemorates the integration of Hyderabad into India in 1948. Union Home Minister Amit Shah actively participated in the ‘official’ Hyderabad-Karnataka Liberation Day ceremony at Parade Grounds in Secunderabad, highlighting its significance.
The Historical Significance of September 17
The historical significance of this day dates back to September 17, 1948, when the formerly Nizam-ruled Hyderabad state became a part of the Indian union, marking a pivotal moment in India’s post-independence history. In the years following this event, it remained relatively understated in terms of celebrations, even after the creation of the state of Telangana.
The Context of the Partition of India
At the time of India’s partition in 1947, the princely states within the Indian subcontinent, while enjoying self-government within their territories, were bound by subsidiary alliances with the British, which granted the British control over their external relations. However, with the enactment of the Indian Independence Act 1947, the British relinquished these alliances, giving the princely states the choice of opting for full independence.
Most princely states, by 1948, had decided to accede to either India or Pakistan. Nevertheless, one notable exception remained – Hyderabad. The Nizam, Mir Osman Ali Khan, Asaf Jah VII, a Muslim ruler presiding over a predominantly Hindu population, chose to pursue independence, attempting to maintain it with the help of an irregular army.
Hyderabad-Karnataka Liberation Day as a Regional Independence Day
Since the historic annexation, the people of the Hyderabad-Karnataka region have commemorated 17th September as a day of regional significance, marking their newfound freedom and integration into the Indian Union. The day serves as a reminder of the sacrifices made during those turbulent times and the triumph of democracy and unity.
The Evolution into Telangana National Integration Day
In 2022, the Government of Telangana made a decision to broaden the significance of this day by designating it as “Telangana National Integration Day” or “Telangana Jathiya Samaikyatha Vajrotsavam.” This move demonstrates a commitment to fostering unity and integration among the diverse communities in the state, emphasizing the importance of India’s diverse cultural fabric.