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Happy Australia Day and Indian Independence Day

By Murray Bourne, 26 Jan 2007

Jan 26th is a special day in India and Australia.

Australia Day

On 26 January 1788, Captain Arthur Phillip arrived from England and took "formal possession" of the colony of New South Wales. Of course, the aborigines had been there for over 40,000 years, but that was conveniently overlooked at the time.

The country was called "Australia" after Federation in 1901. This was after the colonies of New South Wales, Tasmania, Western Australia, South Australia, Victoria, and Queensland became states.

oz flag

The Australian flag includes the Southern Cross (a prominent constellation visible in the Southern hemisphere) and that Union Jack which should have gone long ago.

Indian Independence Day

For the Indians, Purna Swaraj (complete independence) Day was first observed on 26 Jan 1930, as part of the push to free India from British Rule. So they observed the day before they got their hard-won independence.

Seems that Australia was one of the few countries that simply told the Brits to go home, and it happened.

Happy Australia Day and Indian Independence Day.

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