Children’s Day – 14th November (INDIA) – 20th November (World)
Universally, Children’s Day is celebrated on 20th November, every year. This date was chosen as a day to celebrate childhood. This was first celebrated in the year 1954, as decided by the UN General Assembly. It was instituted with the aim of promoting communal exchange and understanding among children, as well as to bring about beneficiary action to promote the welfare of children, all over the globe. It marks the anniversary of the day in 1959, when the “Declaration of the Rights of the Child” was adopted by the UN General Assembly. In 1989 the “Convention on the Rights of the Child” was signed on the same date, which has been sanctioned by 191 states, ever since.
In India, we celebrate 4th November as Children's day, the birth-anniversary-day of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, a great freedom fighter and our first PM.
Children's Day is to celebrate "childhood". Children are loved by one and all. They win over our hearts with their angelic eyes and innocent smiles. It makes one realise that maybe that’s the way God wanted us to be.
India's first PM, Pt. Jawaharlal Nehru, was born on November 14. After his death in 1963, his birthday has been celebrated as children's Day in India. Children's Day is not just a day to let the future generation have its say. It is a day to remember a leader who, in his quiet but determined way, laid the foundation to convert a nascent nation into a world power. But why Children's Day? Apart from being known for his skills as a statesman, Nehru was also immensely fond of children. The more popular and famous of Nehru's pictures show him with children. In all the photographs Nehru's joy at being with children is apparent. When he is not sharing pleasantries with them, the expression of intense concentration as he listens to them reveals his commitment and attitude to children. Children to Nehru were little adults in the making.Nehru, to children, is never the Indian political leader and prime minister. He is always Chacha Nehru - Nehru Uncle. The story also goes that he started to wear a rose on his jacket after a child pinned one on it. The national children's centre, Jawahar Bal Bhavan, is also named after Jawaharlal Nehru. Children's Day is literally that. It is the day when children all over the country are pampered with goodies. From the schoolchild's point of view, the best thing perhaps is that it is a special day at school - they need not wear uniforms and are given sweets.
Celebrations: Children's Day is celebrated all over India, especially at the school level. There are also community activities with stress on children's involvement. Most schools have cultural programmes for the day, with the students managing it all. All over the country, various cultural, social, and even corporate, institutions conduct competitions for children. Children's Day is a day for children to engage in fun and frolic. Schools celebrate this day by organising cultural programmes. Teachers of the school perform songs and dances for their students. Various competitions like quizzes, fancy dress competitions, elocutions are organised on this day. Children are also treated to a movie and lunch. Television networks have in the recent years started to air special programmes all day long for kids on November 14, making this day a special treat.
DID YOU KNOW? –
Children's Day in Japan: National Children's Day in Japan is known as Kodomo no Hi. It is celebrated on May 5th. The family celebrates the festival with Kashiwamochi (rice cakes filled with red beans and wrapped with oak leaves) and Chimaki (rice cakes wrapped with bamboo leaves). According to the Kodansha encyclopaedia, the origin of the festival was from China in 839AD. On May 5th, Chinese people hang medical herbs from the eaves of the roof in order to repel disease. When the custom came to Japan, people used Shobu (irises) instead since irises were believed to repel evil spirits. During 12th century, the custom was influenced by the warrior class. Since another meaning of Shobu is victory or defeat, the practice of giving little boys kites with pictures of warriors on them were spread in Japan. In the Edo period (1600-1868), streamers with pictures of carp were presented to boys. Recently, many families live in apartments not houses. They display small carp streamers or Kabuto at their homes because of limited space.
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