By Shreya Jha
National anthem padhte hi article khol liya na?
If you thought this was true and opened the article just to find another reason to thump your chest my dear internet patriot, then I suggest, read the full article!
Sirf National Anthem gaa ke patriotism dikhaane walon! Janta maaf nahi karegi!
The recent supreme court ruling makes it mandatory to sing national anthem before every movie is played in the cinema halls. The supreme court judge held that it should be sung “for the love of motherland”.
However the apparent flawed fact here remains that is singing the national anthem before every movie is a sign of love and patriotism for the country? Does it not point to the fact that even when you don’t sing it you might be very much patriotic and love your nation and even when you sing you might not feel a thing for the country?
Moreover this compelling decision points to the very fact that there is infringement of individual liberty. Thus, nationalism or patriotism is not limited to national anthem. It is very broad term encompassing all aspects of life.
However, no matter how compelling the decision may sound, it is our moral responsibility to look into the fact that we do not disrespect our national anthem and hold ourselves in high regard while singing it.
Keeping the spirit of patriotism alive let us take a look at some interesting facts about our national anthem.
1. Jan Gana Man was composed by the bard of Bengal Rabindranath Tagore in the year 1905. He is the only composer in the world to have written national anthems for two countries- India and Bangladesh. The national anthem for Bangladesh is known as Amar Shonar Bangla.
2. It was first sung in the Calcutta session of the Indian National Congress on 27th December 1911.
3. The song is composed in shankarabharanam ragam. This raga is a part of carnatic music and it’s Hindustani equivalent is bilawal.
4. The year of 1911 coincided with the visit of King George-V to India. So previously it was thought that the song commemorates the arrival of King’s arrival to India and is not much of a patriotic song.
5. There have been numerous rumours that Jana Gana Mana has been declared the best national anthem by UNESCO but this sort of report is hoax. And please don’t believe those WhatsApp forwards!!
6. 52 seconds is the prescribed time to sing the national anthem.
7. There is no law as such which compels to sing the national anthem.
8. There was an uproar in Kashmir in the year 2005 to delete the word ‘sindh’ from the anthem and replace it with Kashmir on the grounds that Sindh is no longer a part of India. However the supreme court ruling held that word Sindh cannot be replaced because it will be against the spirit with which the anthem was composed. Sindh comprises of the population of people living in and around the Indus river and therefore the word Sindh cannot be deleted from the anthem.
9. The song was originally composed in Bengali. We sing the hindi version of it.
10. Originally the song ‘vande mataram’ composed by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee was supposed to be the national anthem. But Jawaharlal Nehru chose Jana Gana Man over it because he believed that it would be convenient for the band to play it.
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Views presented in the article are those of the author and not of ED.