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ing ourselves as a nation. The occasion is a unique one, for this is the first time in the history of modern India that the nation has been called upon to honour people who have suffered for the country’s cause The event marks a new era in the history of our country, and heralds a new destiny for our countrymen. No nation need despair of its future that counts in its ranks men who are ready to suffer for their Motherland.
These gentlemen, whom we see before us, are the sufferers for the Swadeshi cause. They have suffered first for a just and righteous cause, and our sympathy naturally goes out to them. But I may be permitted to say, that their sufferings, however great, are nothing compared with what the people of Ireland, Russia and China have suffered, and are suffering still. Through her patient suffering, Ireland is about to realise her long-cherished aspiration for Home Rule. Through her suffering, Russia has wrung not a few concessions from the Autocratic Czar. Through her suffering China too, with the aid of the Reform Party, has emerged from her stagnant national life. Suffering constitutes the best and greatest sacrifice and no cause has ever been won without it. Our people are yet at the beginning of the struggle and they must be pre-