Vande Mataram is a Bengali song written by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee. It was written to instill patriotism in the minds of Indians during the times of British occupation. It was instrumental in the Indian independence movement because of which the first two stanzas were recognized as the national song by the Indian government after independence.
Here is the Indian national song Vande Mataram recited by AR Rahman, a devout Indian Muslim.
The English translation of the national song is as follows:
I show gratitude to thee, Mother,
cool with the winds of the south,
dark with the crops of the harvests,
Her nights rejoicing in the glory of the moonlight,
her lands clothed beautifully with her trees in flowering bloom,
sweet of laughter, sweet of speech,
The Mother, giver of boons, giver of bliss.
It is an emotional song every Indian sings to his motherland. We are imagining her to be a woman and our beloved mother. The verse describes about the mother. It is all imagination. You can visualize that all in your mind when the song is played in a gathering.
It is not an act of worship if you are singing the national song, Vande Materam. The group is not singing to Hindu Goddess Durga Devi. No religious activity is happening when Vande Materam is being sung.Why are we calling Mahatma Gandhi as father of the nation? It is all imagination and concept rather than reality.
Unfortunately some Muslims, Sikhs and even Christians view Vande Mataram as a Hindu hymn worshiping Goddess Durga. This is due to the misunderstanding due to the Sangh Parivar and RSS worshiping Bharat Mata as a female diety. There are some Bharat Matha temples at Varanasi and Haridwar. Indian Muslims are the ones who chose to reside in secular India along with the majority Hindus rather than going to the nation created for Muslims called Pakistan.
The Muslim clergy has raised their opposition to singing Vande Materam. In 2009 Jamait-e-Ulema Hind issed a fatwa against Vande Mataram singing. This week a gentleman BSP MP Shafiqur Rahman Barq was caught red handed by Speaker Meira Kumar in the Lok Sabha walking out when Vande Materam was recited. His excuse for the disregard was that this song went against his religious freedom. So all other MPs in Loksabha were less pious Muslims than this gentleman?
The opposition is idiotic as it goes against national integration. If Hindus regard themselves as Hindus first and Indians next, Muslims regard themselves as Muslims first and Indians next, Tamils regard themselves as Tamils first and Indians next, where is national integration?
Views expressed above are solely of the author and not of The Kochi Post. Maneesh J is a Kerala based blogger and entrepreneur, he can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org