SUJALAM SUPHLAM MALAYAJASITALAM
Lines from national song of India. A national song meant a lot for the nation. It’s a symbol of identity, culture and pride of that particular nation. India also pays respect to its national song, national anthem and the heritage this territorial have. By giving the status of national song to Vande Matram the constitutional makers expect from us to pay respect towards same. This present year is the year with most controversy with respect to the national song. Our national song is opposed on the ground that it is in conflict with the religious values of people residing in India. To make the song compulsory to recite will infringe the sentimental values and beliefs of a community. It’s not hidden from anybody that from the day of independence till today India always put the religious values and sentiments of its citizen to great height. Evident shows that India pays respect to religious beliefs and religion of it’s enemies. The country ensured that even the enemies got funeral in accordance to the customs of that enemy. Even though voice is raised that passing a law or a judgment from the court with respect to reciting of national song amounts to forced nationalism and it’s the will of the state which is imposed over citizens overlooking the fact that it’s against their religion. Through this article we will try to resolve the issue that whether saying to recite national song amounts to forced nationalism.
HISTORY OF NATIONAL SONG
Vande Matram is a poem composed by Shri. Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay in 1870s. In year 1881 it is included in his novel named as Anandamath. In political context the song was first sung by Rabindranath Tagore at the 1896 session of Indian National Congress. Since then it become a popular song among the freedom fighters of India. The ruling government of that time i.e British government banned this song. Despite of the ban Indian’s recite the song. As a result of this several Indians were thrown behind bars just for reciting this song. In year 1947 India snatched its Independence from the hand of British. Afterwards in year 1950 the government of free India uplifts the ban from the song and accepted it as the national song of this republic and free country. Only two verses of this song were accepted as national song because these two phrases are an abstract of the song and it limits itself to mother and motherland. The ahead verses were not accepted because the song ahead explicitly mentions goddess such as Durga. Since then this song is crowned as national song of this country.
ISSUE OF FORCED NATIONALISM
Forced nationalism includes all those acts which forces nationalism over you against your will. The one way is to be a nationalist and the other way is to make the others nationalist. The brutal act which forces you to pay respect can be considered as forced nationalism but a piece of paper repeating same thing again is forced nationalism. This is out of the box that hoe it is to be considered as forced nationalism. The enactment of these laws or the judgment of the court never punishes you if you not pay tribute or recite the national song or national anthem whatsoever the case is. The reason is clarified that Art. 51 A of Constitution of India is a directive article and no one can be prosecuted if he/she doesn’t perform his/her fundamental duty. Further, the top most judiciary in National anthem case held in similar manner and said that it is infringement of one’s fundamental right if he is thrown out of school for not performing his duty of reciting national song. The court also said if one gets successes in proving that it’s against his religious beliefs then he will get immunity from singing the anthem but he has to pay respect. So, it’s clarified that a law passed by legislature or a verdict passed by court of India can’t bind a citizen to recite the song. Now, it is to be found that whether the national song of India is contrary to religious beliefs of Individuals. I’m not that much aware about what a religion is. That’s why without stepping inside one’s religion we’ll try to find out the reply through various facts. The first apprehension which comes in my mind is that if the national song titled Vande Matram is contrary to religious belief then why it is accepted as a national song of India.
A religion and holy books are static from time immoral and same is with their interpretation. There will never a situation where a holy book or religion says one thing during the period of my father or grandfather and at my age it’ll say another thing. Indeed whatsoever the religion says during my forefather’s period it’ll remain same for me as well. It’ll not turn in another way during my time. Therefore one thing is transparent that religion, holy books and their interpretation is same from beginning to our age. It is disgraceful that after 70 years of Independence and 67 years of republic the country is checking the validity in terms of religion. The fact can’t be ignored that the classification of religion is unchanged since Independence. Now, the big apprehension arises is that when the song doesn’t fit in accordance to religious belief of one community then why it was accepted? The song was accepted as national song that means that it’s appropriate in all terms and doesn’t suffers from any religious problem. Two facts which strengthen the fact that national song is appropriate in all terms and it doesn’t violate any religious belief if a person sing that and it is because of this the song was accepted as national song. The first fact is India adopted it as national song at that time when we saw a lot of drowning blood in name of religion. I have the opinion that the assembly doesn’t have that much dare that they can take risk of drowning blood again in native territorial. Second fact which strengthens the fact that the national song doesn’t violate anyone’s religious beliefs is that the assembly which accepted this song as national song is comprises of eminent like Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Maulana Abul Kalam Azad etc. Maulana Azad was not only the leader of this free and democratic state but is also a person with high knowledge of religion. He was paid with high respect and honor all over the world for his knowledge in the field of religion. The assembly which is honored with eminent like Maulana sahib in my view can’t do such a fatal mistake to accept a song which violates anyone’s religion by reciting it. Further Maulana Sahib was the member of Congress for a long period and has an active role in India’s Independence. The person who always live under the shadow of that song never opposed the song proves the fact that the song is not violating anyone’s religious belief.
If violated then why recited by martyrs during the war of Independence and after Independence.
The national of India is not a new born song. It’s in existence years back from war of independence. It’s also in peak during the freedom struggle. Thousands of freedom fighters who bought color of freedom for this country died reciting this song. After independence also we lose our endless number of martyrs protecting this land and cheerfully reciting the words of this song. If it is violative of anyone’s religious belief then why these people never opposes. In fact the song is recited cheerfully in schools and defense sector. Therefore, it is out of the thinking level that how the song is contrary to someone’s religion. Because if by reciting this song someone’s religion is violated than from which religion these people belong.
In India I found nothing which can be considered as forced nationalism. The term forced nationalism is what Hitler did. It’s suitable to use for Kim Jong Un of North Korea. In India forced nationalism is the blunder created by the politician and those people whose interest lies with these political groups or leaders. What was done by Justice M.V. Muralidharan and the government of state is in compliance of the laws and constitution of this country. A compulsion that you have to sing national song is not amount to forced nationalism. Because what they said is same which was earlier said by the assembly of India. Further, the song was sung by the people of this country from past many years. So, from where the issue of forced nationalism arises today. Forced nationalism is not the issue but the way people are watching to gain political benefit and the cheap publicity. Today, you pass a statement in morning that this is violating my religion in the same evening the media make it a issue which is more important than the other national issues. So, the one who is unknown till morning become a star by evening. Therefore, I found that the issue is given unnecessary weightage by the media of India. Politicians were doing their work effectively which they were doing from past many years i.e. to make this country a war field in the name of religion and get the remarkable position in assemblies very easily. The one who said that national song is against our religion. The reply is that If in true sense it is against the religion then the renowned personalities who very well aware of religion and its interpretation will never accept it. Although, if someone feels it inappropriate to sing the national song than he/she may. Law will never punish such person. But targeting the whole community is nothing but an attempt to create hate in hearts of people residing in India. Lastly, if the verdict of court and laws passed by state is forced nationalism than what the first assembly of this republic India did was much graver than the forced nationalism.
By-SANDEEP, Student Reporter, INBA