Each year on August 15th, we join with Indians around the world to honor Mahatma Gandhi and the heroes of the Indian independence movement who proved that great change can be achieved through nonviolent resistance. Their courage and determination has inspired generations of leaders around the world, including Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and others who advanced America’s own struggle for civil rights and equality. Sixty-three years after Independence, India is a world leader, and the “Indian Dream” of freedom, tolerance, and prosperity continues to offer an example for people who yearn for democracy and liberty around the globe.
The United States is committed to further strengthening our cooperation and partnership with India. As President Obama noted during our Strategic Dialogue, the relationship between our two countries is unique. It is rooted in common interests, shared values and democratic traditions, and strengthened by our extensive people-to-people connections. We look forward to further developing these bonds when President Obama visits India this fall. Because it is only through dynamic, global cooperation between India and the United States that we can address the defining challenges of the 21st century.
Once again, I congratulate the people of India on all you have achieved and wish you a safe and joyous Independence Day celebration.