Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s 25-year roadmap to India becoming an advanced country has got a symbol now — the holy Sengol, the scepter that marked transfer of power from the British to the Indians in 1947. The scepter will be installed in the new Parliament on Sunday.

The term ‘Amrit Kaal’ was coined by Modi in 2021 during the 75th Independence Day celebrations, to describe the 25-year period leading to the 100th anniversary of India’s independence in 2047. Modi has said Amrit Kaal is the period when India should strive to become an advanced economy marked by all-around development.

Senior BJP leader and Union Home Minister Amit Shah tweeted two days ago: The ‘Sengol represents the values of fair and equitable governance. It will shine near the Lok Sabha Speaker’s podium as a national symbol of the Amrit Kaal, an era that will witness the new India taking its rightful place in the world.”

“The Hon’ble Prime Minister took a decision to adopt the Sengol as a national symbol of the Amrit Kaal,” states a government press release.

“Even after 75 years of independence, most of the people in India are not aware of this event in which India’s transfer of power took place through handing over of Sengol to Pt Jawaharlal Nehru. It was a special occasion on the night of August 14, 1947, celebrating India’s independence. On this night Jawaharlal Nehru received the ‘Sengol’ from the Adheenams (Priests) of the Thiruvaduthurai Adheenam (Mutt) in Tamil Nadu, who had specially arrived for the occasion. It was precisely the moment in which power was transferred by the British into the hands of Indians. What we are celebrating as independence is actually marked by the very moment of handing over the ‘Sengol’,” Shah said.

The Sengol has generated a lot of controversy. Congress leader Jairam Ramesh on Friday claimed there was no documented evidence of Lord Mountbatten, C Rajagopalachari and Jawaharlal Nehru describing the Sengol as a symbol of transfer of power by the British to India. “Is it any surprise that the new Parliament is being consecrated with typically false narratives from the WhatsApp University? The BJP/RSS Distorians stand exposed yet again with Maximum Claims, Minimum Evidence,” Ramesh tweeted.

Shah replied that the Congress needs to reflect on its behaviour as he denounced the party’s claim that there was no evidence of the Sengol being a symbol of transfer of power by the British to India. “Why does the Congress party hate Indian traditions and culture so much? A sacred Sengol was given to Pandit Nehru by a holy Saivite Mutt from Tamil Nadu to symbolize India’s freedom but it was banished to a museum as a ‘walking stick’,” Shah tweeted.

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