"Since 1947, India has stood as a beacon for the world, as an economic power that prides innovation, as a resilient democracy in the face of terror and as a strategic power that upholds international norms," John Kerry, the US secretary of state, said in his Independence Day message on behalf of US President Barack Obama.
Ahead of India's 69th Independence Day, Kerry said on Thursday, "As the world's largest democracies, the US and India stand side by side in defending and promoting the freedoms and values we hold."
"As was highlighted during President Obama's visit for India's Republic Day in January, the US takes pride in our indispensable partnership with India, a friendship built on our shared democratic values, the entrepreneurial spirit of our people, and our shared interests," Kerry said.
Sending best wishes to the people of India on the occasion of Independence Day, Kerry said, "Today we commemorate the legacy of India's freedom fighters including Mahatma Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru and Sardar Patel, whose message of nonviolence established a united, inclusive republic and served to inspire leaders from around the globe."
Kerry said on his many visits to India over the years, he never ceased to be amazed by India's rich national identity.
"From the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas to the jungles of the Western Ghats, India is a stunningly beautiful landscape with rich cultures, histories and peoples united under one nation," Kerry added.