Gandhi Versus the Empire

By Haridas T. Muzumdar | Go to book overview

PART V

CHAPTER XXVII
AN OPEN LETTER TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE

MY DEAR FRIENDS: This day, the Twenty-Sixth of January, is to us of India as dear and meaningful as the Fourth of July is to you. Today we are celebrating the Second Anniversary of India's Declaration of Independence.1 Permit me to thank you, one and all, for the

____________________
1

This Open Letter to the American People is reproduced from Vol. III of the India Today and Tomorrow Series, edited by the present writer, entitled "The Story of Peace Negotiations," pp. 14-16; New York: India Today and Tomorrow Publishers, 1932.

The First Anniversary of India's Declaration of Independence was celebrated in Philadelphia and Washington by the present writer in conjunction with a number of Indian and American friends. Our New York party was received in the forenoon at the Broad Street Station by the Reception Committee composed of prominent Philadelphians and by a police escort. Having been escorted to the City Hall, we were welcomed by the Mayor of Philadelphia, Mrs. James W. Kyle officiating at the reception ceremonies in the absence of Mayor Harry E. Mackey. On behalf of our Independence Celebration Committee I read a brief statement of greetings and Miss Premala Sahani garlanded the Mayor, Indian-fashion, as a token of our esteem. His Honor the Mayor responded to our greetings and expressed the hope that the one whom the whole world loved and admired might soon be released.

Thankfully declining the Mayor's kind offer of automobiles to escort us, we preferred to walk from City Hall to Independence Hall. As the papers correctly reported, there were no bands. The Stars and Stripes and the Tri-Colored Spinning Wheel of India were proudly playing in the gentle breeze. Mr. Michael Francis Doyle acted as Master of Ceremonies. We paid our respect to the birth-place of American Independence and garlanded the Liberty Bell whose welcome

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