New Delhi: Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi on Thursday said millions encounter discrimination every day, even though a democratic and resilient India doesn’t have a place for bigotry and intolerance.

While extending her greetings on the 73rd Independence day, Sonia Gandhi said, “India has surged ahead exponentially in all arenas but at our core are the founding principles of ‘truth, non-violence, compassion and unwavering patriotism.”

“A democratic and resilient India at 73 has no place for bigotry, superstition, sectarianism, fanaticism, racialism, intolerance or injustice, yet millions of fellow citizens encounter discrimination every day.”

“We must rise as a nation to stand against every act of injustice, intolerance and discrimination to truly cherish our freedom.”

In her statement, Sonia Gandhi also urged citizens to observe the solemn duty of protecting and preserving the values of freedom, brotherhood, peace and equality while asserting that “our Independence was a result of immeasurable sacrifices of those who made India what it is today”.

“We must not forget the supreme sacrifice of our armed forces in protecting the integrity of India.”

Sonia Gandhi on Thursday hoisted the Tricolour at the party headquarters here marking the 73rd Independence Day.

Rahul Gandhi, who visited his parliamentary constituency of Wayanad in Kerala following the floods, also returned to the national capital and attended the flag hoisting programme.

The Congress chief also paid tribute to farmers, labourers, artisans, scientists, tradesmen, teachers, artists, writers and thinkers, who play an important role in nation-building.

(With IANS inputs)