What is it to be born on August 15, 1947, none knows it better than now 75-year-old Swathanthran. On Monday, he was basking in glory as it was his birthday that he and his family will remember for a while.
Swathanthran is not at all a strange name, however, each time his two children or his wife when asked about his name, people are startled to know, why he was named like that.
"It was just the other day I went to collect medicines for my father at a government clinic. The person who gave me the medicine asked me how come such a name. And (after knowing the reason) the person said 'hats off' to his (Swathanthran's) parents who decided to name him like that," Swathanthran's daughter Sukanya who works in a Central government organisation told IANS.
Swathanthran said that his parents - Narayana Reddiar and Janaki Ammal, after their marriage in around 1922, migrated from Tirunelveli (Tamil Nadu) to the state capital city suburb of Nedumangad, where he lives with his wife Ananda Lekshmi, who has to do most of the explaining on why such a name.
"All become very happy when they get to know that since he was born the day India got Independence, he was named like that," said a beaming Ananda Lekshmi.
"We are basically farmers and that was our principal vocation. Once after reaching here my father started a wholesale trading business. He also had a few cows. I was born on August 15, 1947, and my parents did not have to think much to give me a name, and that's how I came to be known as 'Swanthanthran'," said Swanthanthran, who is leading a happy and contented retired life.
When asked if it (the name) helped him in any manner, with a laugh he said, "though it did not get me any rewards, however, I get a lot of respect."
For almost four decades he worked with a leading textile firm in here in the state capital.
On Monday, it was a bonhomie when the entire family all dressed in a green T-shirt got together not just to celebrate the 75th anniversary of India's independence but also to celebrate Swanthanthran's birthday.