Thursday, August 21, 2008

Mile Sur Mera Tumhara: India, Unity in Diversity

Yesterday I happened to see Doordarshan's Old song " Mile Sur Mera Tumhara" on DD Bharti. For those who don't know about this song, Here is introduction that it used to be telecasted on DD National earlier almost 3-4 times in a day and has first lines as " Mile sur mera tumhara to sur bane humaaara". Then in the song many people and prominent personalities from different part of contry are shown singing these lines and then all of them are shown to assemble at a place so as to form a symbolic Indian map. Little kids with Candles are shown, with Candles in their Hands and they Create an India. Song is just one click away at YouTube.
I remember when I was a kid, I kind of not liked it because I had to wait for my favourite serial Mahabharata for some more time because of this song. But at that age also it used to generate a sense of Indianness among me. It was my first introduction to a South Indian Language or a Marathi people singing this song in marathi language. It was the song that subconsciously made me aware of India being a diverse country and all of us being a thread to its diversity and yet being united to make this beautiful collage. I consider myself lucky to have been later in a MNNIT Allahabad, where I came in contact with people from all parts of India ( In all NITs in India we have quotas for persons from all states of India) and felt the richness of India because of this diversity. I always have seen this diversity as our unique strength.
But now that I have grown up, I have other feeling also, for this "Unity in Diversity" Tag. Sometimes I think that we(Indians) have spent only 61 years as country India. Earlier there were provinces and there was no concept of India as a nation. So if you consider this, you would realise that out of say 5000+ years we have been India only for 61 years. And precisely grew united because of urgency during freesom movement of India, which provided us a common cause. And as we all know that even for Freedom we had to become divided in India and Pakistan ( though it was because of many reasons yet the baseline was our diversity,religious in this case. And Besides we had Leadership of some great figures of Indian History like Mahatma Ghandhi, or some others, and they were the ones who helped in development of concept of nation India.
But now after 61 years, does it not look like we are falling apart? Consider these recent separatist movements for separate Kashmir,earlier for separate Khalistan, North East and in Tamilnadu. I read this Statement from Arundhati Roy some days earlier that Kashmir should be given Freedom from India. I understand, that the statement is emotional to a large extent but it has an intellectual basis also. Does it not strike you since we have no common cause like freedom struggle today, we are moving towards separation which is our natural tendency because of so much diversity? I mean we always say that India in unique because of "Unity in Diversity", but to me it looks like that this diversity alone does not let us to become united naturally.
Well, This is just a thought that I do not subscribe very well for even myself. But somehow it makes some sense. and if you think more on this point, it makes greater sense. It seems natural that we have Naxalism,Bodo terrorism or many such other problems.
But On thinking more I find out that No, we have a common Thread, a sense of being Indian, which I am ignoring if I say that separation is our natural tendency. If Abhinav wins a Gold Medal, a Tamil is as happy as a punjabi. And Its been like this since ages that people at one part of India have mourned in sufferings of people elsewhere in India. This common thread is precisely the same feeling that I used to get watching "Mile Sur Mera Tumhara". This is our common Pulse that beats loud and keeps doing so. I felt this Pulse when I was at MNNIT Allahabad,I felt this pulse when I was at IPL match at Delhi,when India won T20 World cup,when we won 3 medals at olympic, when I ate Khicdi in Pongal at Allahabad, or even when I felt pain after bombblasts at Ahmedabad. But I feel we should strive to keep this pulse beating. For Instance I am surprised to see why Doordarshan does not Telecast "Mile Sur Mera Tumhara" any more. Why can't I&B ministry push other TV channels to do so. Some give economic agrument against this, but Money in one hand in counrty in other! Choice is simple. It is very imporatant that we become aware of this pulse and then try and not block it in anyways. Because Propagandas are created repeatedly which can effect our subconscious thinking, like the statement that of Arundhatui Roy. Well, at last I would say that we should enjoy this richness of Indian Diversity as this is very unique strength or ours and makes us True nation in many ways.

"Mile Sur Mera Tumhara to sur bane hamaraa"