BY BALQIS JAMALUDIN
KUALA TERENGGANU: For many of us, August 31 might be just another public holiday, one more reason to spend the much-needed quality time with families at home.
But for Y. Harshine, 22, it is the day that reminds her to always be grateful for the independence and freedom the country enjoyed by the country.
“Since I was young, my grandmother M. Talesamah, 78, would always tell me stories of the struggles experienced by the people living in the pre-independence era, especially during the Japanese occupation in Malaya. She said most of them were too scared to go out due to the many threats especially upon women,” she told Bernama.
Food was scarce and had to be rationed, a far cry from the present time, where one could just leave the house anytime and eat anything the heart desires, she added.
In this regard, the student at Merlimau Polytechnic in Melaka believes that to appreciate this freedom, her generation should learn more of such stories and share them with the next generation lest they disappear with time.
For Kong Suet Jing, 24, all the time she spent with her school’s marching band would never be forgotten for it involved the memories of participating in the annual National Day Parade.
She said even after leaving school, she would wake up as early as 6am on August 31 to witness the parade which would customarily be held at the Dataran Batu Burok here every year.
“Besides showing support to my juniors participating in the parade, attending the parade at Dataran Batu Burok is how I express appreciation to the freedom fighters and show my love for Malaysia. I feel sorry that this year there will not be any parade due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” she added.
Meanwhile, making time to watch patriotic films featuring the pre-independence era is how Nur Ainul Syahirah Marzuki, 25 reignites the love she has for the country.
Her must-see list to be watched on the days leading to August 31 includes Embun, Paloh, Bukit Kepong and Leftenan Adnan.
“We should also be grateful for the people who produced such films that portray life before Independence. I hope more of such films will be produced,” she said. – Bernama