31 October: Rashtriya Ekta Diwas
Rashtriya Ekta Diwas (National Unity Day) is observed every year across India on 31 October to commemorate birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhai Patel who had played important role in unifying the country.
Observance of day provides an opportunity to re-affirm inherent strength and resilience of our nation to withstand actual and potential threats to unity, integrity and security of our country.
To mark this occasion various activities and events are being organised across ministries and departments all over the country. Besides, Run for Unity was organised in New Delhi from the National Stadium. The idea of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas was mooted by PM Narendra Modi in October 2014 to mark the birth anniversary of Independent India’s first Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel.
Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel
He was born on 31 October, 1875 at Karamsand, Gujarat and died on 15 December 1950 in Mumbai, Maharashtra. He is known as Iron Man of India or Bismarck of India. By profession, he was barrister (lawyer) and had successfully practiced law. Later he left law practice and joined the Indian national movement under leadership of Mahatma Gandhi.
In India’s independence struggle, he played a major role in organizing peasants’ movements on Gandhian principles in Bardoli and Kheda in Gujarat and during the Quit India movement.
His biggest contribution to India was his role in the integration of the over 500 princely states with India during 1947-49. He is also remembered as Patron Saint of India’s civil servants for establishing modern All-India services. He was posthumously conferred with Bharat Ratna, India’s highest Civilian honour, in 1991.