Adityanath ji, remember an anthem is sung from the heart, not by your orders

Instead of forcing words into the mouths of Muslims, your government should try to win their hearts, make them feel safe and equal.

 |  4-minute read |   12-08-2017
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Every word we utter isn't the truth. Sometimes, the truth has nothing to do with what we say, our verbal promise doesn't hold. Even the expressions we use to describe few incidents are not a reflection — a mirror image of what we think or who we are inside.

I can say this because I have seen politicians, who have taken the oath of representing people, in the laps of business lobbies. The officers who committed on paper and in their oaths to serve people were found treating ordinary citizens as slaves and animals. I have seen people in the witness box taking oaths in the name of God only to make false statements that influenced judgments and justice. Cops taking bribes from the culprits, doctors running private clinics at their residences and teachers blackmailing students for coaching classes are open secrets.

Not to mention that all of them, at some point of time, have taken oaths to serve the citizenry with honesty and without discrimination.

The list doesn’t end here. Every citizen accepts and says that he/she wants corruption to go, for India to lead the world and for honesty to prevail.

However, many among us do not pay taxes or seek the help of CAs to figure out a safe passage and shortchange the government.

madrasa_081117105749.jpgSuch discrimination would only lead to discontent and bitterness in hearts. Photo: PTI

We jump the red lights, break queues and blow horns outside hospitals and schools. We don’t even pay the bare minimum wages that our household helps are entitled to and still employ kids, teenagers to work as servants in our homes.

Like previous regimes, this government too has made promises to the people before and after elections — promises that were recited like chants from the holy books.

They were distributed to ordinary citizens as manifestos by political parties. However, illusionists have failed to bring to life the dreams they put in our eyes; people are still hopeful — despite the long waitlist of promises.

We promised right to education, employment for youth, healthcare for all, potable water for each and every household, good food for jawans and good equipment for our sportspersons — these pledges lie documented in our speeches; from the streets to the Parliament, from the manifestos to the books of law.

But there is no sign of dawn. Darkness is the lasting reality for most ordinary citizens in this country.

In this milieu, a new order passed by Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government says that on this Independence Day, the National Anthem must be sung in every madrasa in his state.

The government has asked madrasas to submit video recordings of the Independence Day celebrations held in their premises.

This is clearly an unequivocal demand to prove one's love for the nation, their nationalism and patriotism. The question is: Can anyone plant seeds of nationalism in citizens with such draconian orders?

This order — a proverbial brain scan of the UP government — reveals its outlook. The meaning is clear. The state government thinks Muslims are lesser patriots. That madrasas are centres of anti-nationals — and that imposing love for the nation can change their hearts.

The message is: singing the National Anthem is the best way to make one loyal to their nation. Truth is, Muslims have played no less a role in the freedom movement that led to the building and making of this nation.

If the government is really keen on spreading the message of nationalism, madrasas must not be singled out; the same could be done for gurudwaras, temples, mutts and churches.

However, that too would be a foul measure — a despicable approach.

The reason is simple. Love and respect can’t be achieved by imposing rules. Forcibly-taken oaths are in no way going to convert into real love. Moreover, such force would only end up yielding negative results.

The lesser faith we show in a community or caste, the lesser scope of winning their hearts and making them loyalists. One can’t instil nationalism by making the national anthem compulsory — and with bias. Such discrimination would only lead to discontent and bitterness in hearts.

The government, instead of forcing words into the mouths of a particular community, should try to win their hearts, make them feel safe and equal.

This will ensure real nationalism — and your citizens will sing Jan Gana Mana from their hearts, not by your orders.


Panini Anand Panini Anand @paninianand

The writer is Editor,

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