Our country won the Cricket World Cup this April and the whole nation erupted with joy, pouring out on the streets to celebrate. Indians, home and abroad were overcome with joy and emotion at this historical moment. The cricketers who were in the winning team were felicitated, offered prize money amounting to Lakhs, given awards by individuals and also from various State and Central Government.
This scenario changed when the team lost their No.1 position in the recent series against England.
Hockey is our National Sport. We won the Asian Championship in China by beating Pakistan. Sadly, the match was not even telecast in India!! The team was felicitated by the Government and was offered a mere twenty-five thousand rupees as an appreciation, which they rejected outright! Kudos and hat’s off to them, serves the government right for being biased.
Then again, recently Anna Hazare called the people of India to participate in the movement against the government to fight corruption. Everyone took to the streets shouting the slogans – “Vande Matharam” and “Bharat Mata ki Jai.” Everyone was swept in this ocean of mass patriotism wanting to be a part in this very defining moment of our recent times.
Yesterday, i.e., 1st October, is celebrated as the United Nations Elders Day and this was celebrated with enthusiasm in my kids’ school too. It was nice to see all the grandmas and grandpas with their grand kids. After the final vote of thanks, the Indian National Anthem was played….everyone got up in respect, but they shied from actually singing the anthem!!! Familiar?
A few years back, the screening of our National Anthem was made mandatory in the multiplexes across Mumbai. A very good move indeed as we were restricted to singing our National Anthem to few times a year.
As soon as we enter the multiplex, we head straight to the refreshment counter to buy popcorn, soft drinks and whatever that fancies us…..we start munching…..enter the theater….munch on……National Anthem is screened…..we stand up…….we munch on. Yes, most of us do that! We open our mouths to eat, but not to sing our anthem!
Are we callous? Indifferent? Shallow with superficial ideals? A combination of all these?
Come on people, it is easy to say “I am Proud to be an Indian” but, do we really mean it? If you love your county, then flaunt it….this is the least you can do to respect your motherland. Next time, please sing the Anthem.