Friday, February 10, 2012

The Silent National Anthem 

All of us feel that the national anthem of our own country is the best in the world. We rise to our feet every time the anthem is played and we beam with pride every time we listen to it. No other song gives more goose bumps than the national anthem. How many of us remember other national anthems of the world? I have heard America’s The Star-Spangled Banner on a few occasions but I wouldn’t be able to hum a line if you asked me to. And why should I? I have my own anthem and it's better than yours!

India’s national anthem – Jana, Gana, Mana – is, arguably, one of the finest. It was composed and set to music by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore, the renowned writer, poet, musician, playwright, and spiritual preceptor. Although Tagore originally wrote it in Bengali in 1911 and later translated it into English, the anthem was adopted by the Constituent Assembly as the Indian national anthem on January 24, 1950. Jana, Gana, Mana means “Thou art the ruler of the minds of all people, Dispenser of India's destiny…” You will find a nice piece about the anthem here.

Over the years the Indian national anthem has been scored and sung in a hundred different ways, and it’s hard to pick any one. My own favourite is The Silent National Anthem created by Mudra Group on the occasion of India’s 61st Republic Day, which falls on January 26 every year. August 15 is our independence day. This beautiful version of the anthem is played in all BIG Cinemas, a division of entertainment group Reliance MediaWorks, minutes before a film rolls. Some years ago, the federal government made it mandatory for all movie theatres to play the national anthem before the start of the film. It’s a goose bumpy feeling if there’s ever one inside a cinema hall.

Check it out below and tell me exactly what you felt, though don't I know that feeling already.


  1. The investiture of emotion in music is world wide.

  2. Charles, it is. Music touches people across the world and brings them together too.