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  • Sanskriti Sinha

August: Month of Indian Nationalism

August has finally arrived. Being proud Indians, we must be aware that this month includes a very significant day in our history. Indeed, the aforementioned refers to August 15th -Independence Day.


India obtained independence from British rule on August 15th, 1947. After a century of revolting and protesting, the unity of Indians finally achieved its aim of Freedom. One of the most interesting aspects of this win was the reason behind that unity; perhaps, the most important aspect: Nationalism.


What is Nationalism? Nationalism is defined as ”The feeling of oneness and common consciousness that emerges when people living in the same territory share the same historical, cultural and political background, have the same cultural values and consider themselves as one nation.” In other words, nationalism is fundamentally a unity of a nation’s people brought together due to their shared values and beliefs.


An instance of nationalism in real life is experienced every day by students at most Indian schools. Every morning, students stand up in attention and sing the national anthem. Unlike other parts of the regular school regime, this ritual is respected greatly by every single student. If a student is seen sitting down or fooling around during the anthem, their peers tend to remind them to stand up and pay their respects.


Why does this happen? Why does each and every student care so much about a single song? Why does it even matter whether someone is standing or sitting? It is because of the feelings of nationalism. Everyone from one nation is united by the common feeling of nationalism, a common feeling of respect towards their nation. Hence, when we see our peer disrespecting the national anthem, it feels like they are disrespecting us personally because we are personally attached to the nation. Moreover, the corrected student usually accepts the feedback immediately because they too care about the nation.


As mentioned previously, our nation is part of our identity. When a person is placed on a global stage they are identified by their country. A perfect example of this concept is the Olympics. According to the Olympic Charter, competitors are meant to represent their individual countries. Notably, all articles about Neeraj Chopra on the Olympics' official website mention his nationality in the title itself because Chopra proudly represents India. This is not only seen in sports but in almost every international community. Global political organisations, businesses, and services all have a delegate or committee representing each nation involved.


As amazing as nationalism can be, sometimes people can hold a dark and twisted form of nationalistic values. In loving one’s own country, one might think it is natural to hate other countries. There are many political figures and movements that have followed such beliefs expressing that their nation is superior to others and disrespecting other countries. In other scenarios, one might think that their nation is not as good as other nations. One might focus on the benefits other countries provide and develop a feeling of hatred or disappointment towards their nation. This is indubitably not what nationalism is about. Rather than comparing one’s nation to others, nationalism is about being proud of one’s nation whilst respecting others. We must remember that each country is wonderful in its way. It is very much possible and sensible to believe that India, your country, is a great country, and simultaneously believe that other countries are great too.


To encourage these respectful nationalistic values, this month, we should try to learn more about our national heritage and share our learnings with fellow Indians. These learnings should not be a medium to compare India with other nations, instead, it should be a method of celebrating India as our lovely homeland. India is a spectacular country with tremendously fascinating qualities. Ranging from our beautiful culture to our academic achievements to our political advancements and certainly, our nationalist people.


It is a well-known fact that India is a vast country with great diversity but there is one thing that connects each of our unique hearts: Nationalism. Regardless of all of our differences, whether it be religious, political, social, psychological and more, we are all brought together by a common respect for our nation. Each of us is tied to our nation’s heritage, consequently, we are all tied to each other.



Bibliography:

  1. n.a. “Independence Day Celebration” Know India. n.d. Web. 6 Aug, 2022. <https://knowindia.india.gov.in/independence-day-celebration/>

  2. n.a. “Competing and being part of the Games - FAQ” International Olympic Committee. n.d. Web. 6 Aug, 2022. <https://olympics.com/ioc/faq/competing-and-being-part-of-the-games>

  3. Nag, Utathya. “Neeraj Chopra’s best throws: Know the Indian javelin ace’s personal bests” International Olympic Committee. 24 Jul, 2022. Web. 6 Aug, 2022. <https://www.google.com/amp/s/olympics.com/en/news/neeraj-chopra-best-throw-javelin>

  4. Sequeira, Dolly Ellen. "Total History & Civics 10 | ICSE Class-X" New Delhi: Morning Star. 2022. Print.





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