Tryst with Destiny by Jawaharlal Nehru
In Tryst with Destiny by Jawaharlal Nehru we have the theme of freedom, power, independence, struggle, hope and commitment. Taken from The Penguin Book of Twentieth Century Speeches the reader realises from the beginning of the speech that Nehru may be exploring the theme of freedom. India has broken away from British rule and now stands as a nation of its own accord. Nehru knows that each Indian has a responsibility to not abuse the power that has been given to them. Which may be Nehru’s way of suggesting that India under British rule was corrupt. Nehru also appears to be suggesting that those who have struggled in the past should not be left behind. They too must be allowed enjoy the comforts of their new found freedom. This may be significant as Nehru may again be highlighting a degree of unfairness towards some Indians while India was under British rule. If anything Nehru is telling his fellow Indians that each one of them has a responsibility and that they must act accordingly. The weight on their shoulders will be heavy but nonetheless they must help other Indians prosper in an independent India.
Nehru also knows that many Indians may be suffering and not only struggling. These people need to be helped and Nehru and his colleagues pledge their service to the millions of people who are suffering in India. No man can know the future but it will not come at an easy price for Nehru or his colleagues. There will be obstacles that they will face and they must be overcome individually and in a manner that is befitting to help all Indians. If Nehru wants to give reality to his dream (independence from Britain) he knows that it will be a struggle that he cannot lose and he implores all Indians to set aside petty arguments and follow him on the road to prosperity. It is not helpful for Indians to turn against their brothers over petty things. Rather Nehru suggests there should be some unity among all Indians. No matter how hard things may be in the future it is important for all Indians to show some commitment to the cause of Independence.
In reality Nehru is hoping that others will share his ideology and put the past behind them. To forget about any grievance they may have when it comes to the matter of Indian independence and to look forward to the future. While at the same time not abandoning anyone to the past. Nehru also recognises the contributions made by Gandhi when it comes to the matter of independence. He suggests that many people, including himself, do not deserve the wisdom that Gandhi had. They have fallen while Gandhi himself persevered. Which may suggest that Nehru will not forgot the contribution that Gandhi has made to society in India nor will future generations. Nehru’s goals might be worth noting as they include a fight to end poverty, ignorance and disease. To build a prosperous, democratic and progressive nation and to create social and economic institutions which will ensure justice for all.
The end of the speech is also interesting as Nehru is being inclusive again of everybody in India. Regardless of their sex or religion. If anything some critics might suggest that Nehru is using a broad brush in the hope that no Indian will be left behind. Something that did not happen prior to Indian achieving independence from British rule. There is also no doubting that the road that Nehru and others must travel is a road that is less traveled. Nehru could quite easily have maintained the status quo and forgotten about others. Instead he is using his speech to rise a nation and to influence them in a positive direction. One in whereby all Indians will see their lives improve. Again regardless of their sex or religion. Nehru is also at pains to emphasize that the new independent India should not be seen as a threat to others. It hopes to join with other countries in the pursuit of peace, freedom and democracy. This may be significant as Nehru appears to be not only suggesting an inclusion to all Indians but to all citizens around the world. All Nehru wants to do is to allow all Indians to be part of a global society. Where respect is shown and given to all regardless of what one’s beliefs may be. It might also be important to note that at no stage in the speech does the reader suspect that Nehru is being derogatory towards Britain.