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Published : Tuesday, 28 October, 2014 11:51 AM
Government of India has decided to observe the birth anniversary of Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel on October 31 as the 'Rashtriya Ekta Diwas' (National Unity Day) every year, as a mark of tribute to the contribution of the country's first Home Minister to unite India.
To spread the message of unity, safety and security, IIM Raipur will also celebrate the ‘Rashtriya Ekta Diwas’ and organize events in the remembrance of Sardar Patel. The institute will hold a panel discussion on the contribution of Sardar Patel to national unity, safety and security. There will also be a special screening of the documentary film made by Doordarshan on Sardar Patel that day.
The enthusiastic students of IIM Raipur will exchange their ideas about Sardar Patel’s contribution to national integration in the form of panel discussion. In the discussion, students will elaborate on the vision of Sardar Patel and how we all should follow his path so that the spirit of unity and security of the nation remains intact. Panelists will throw light on his journey of life, from a barrister to a freedom fighter, and from a politician to a minister. They will analyze how he leveraged his organizing skills to construct the Modern India and how can budding managers relate these skills to business context and keep their teams integrated. The panelists will also discuss about the various threats our nation is facing and the possible ways to overcome these challenges to maintain the peace and harmony among the people of the nation. 
Sardar Patel, known as the "Iron Man of India", was instrumental in the merger of over 500 princely states to create a modern, united India, just after Independence between 1947-1949. His strength of character, the sharpness of his mind, his organizing skills, and all his energy were offered up for achieving the freedom of India under Gandhi's leadership, and after independence for India's consolidation. As the first Home Minister and Deputy Prime Minister of India, he is credited to consolidate the small kingdoms with great wisdom and political foresight after independence. There were a lot of problems connected with the reunion of the numerous states into India, but Sardar Patel’s relentless efforts towards the unity of the country brought success. The world recognized his efforts more so because he successfully united a scattered nation without any bloodshed. 
As a minister, he insisted on guarded regulations on land reforms and nationalization of key industries. His efforts to reform the Hindu religion and protect the people of other faiths reflected his longing for the right to religion. He encouraged the duly elected authority to bring restrictions through various legislative measures to freedom for all. Thus, his political value system was a fine synthesis of liberalism, conservatism and welfare. 
His vision of State was in tune with the pattern of his political values. In his concept, the State was founded and held together by a high sense of nationalism and patriotism. Individual liberty was to be in conformity with the provisions of the Constitution. To create a Nation-State, he pressed for the emancipation of backward communities and women and bring about Hindu-Muslim unity through the Gandhian constructive programme. He strengthened the plural basis of the nation-state by bringing electoral participation as effective political mobilisation. He saw a nation as ‘democratic in structure, nationalistic in foundation and welfarist in spirit and function’. 
In 1991 the grateful nation conferred upon him the honour of Bharat- Ratna. Celebrating his birth anniversary as ‘Rashtriya Ekta Diwas’ will indeed help India reaffirm its strength and resilience against adversaries. IIM Raipur’s efforts are directed towards creating a higher level of awareness into the contributions of this great man and rekindle his vision for a new and reinvigorated India.
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