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Tuesday, January 24, 2006 

Temporary Patrioitism



I was watching Indian Idol yesterday, and that the show had gone patriotic all of a sudden reminded me that Jan 26 was approaching. They had taken the contestants to some army camp in Assam. The show they had recorded there was going to be shown on a news channel on the Republic day. All of a sudden, one could see national flags being sold at the signals and in general, every product is showing the tricolour in its advertisements. Music channels have suddenly started showing patriotic songs. Movie channels have also jumped on to the bandwagon, and war and historical movies will be on display on Republic Day.

Every year, on the advent of the two national holidays, i.e. Republic Day and Independence Day, we see a spurt in our patriotism. It is almost as if being patriotic and feeling great about our nation is reserved for these 2 days. Only on these 2 days do we remember the symbols of our nations, our glorious past, and the great leaders who fought for our freedom, and the armed forces, which have done such a great job protecting us, both from external and internal security threats.

Simultaneously, these 2 days are also meant to forget what is wrong with the current state of affairs of the nation. On these two days, we tend to forget the problems plaguing the nations, and start prophesizing a glorious future for the country, completely and conveniently ignoring the challenges facing our country.

But how many of the things mentioned about our nation (be it the national symbols, sacrifices of our leaders, or the problems and challenges) disappear after the advent of the two national festivals? Then why do we reserve all our feelings for the nation for these 2 days? What stops us from having the same mindset all throughout the year? And why forget the challenges facing us on the 2 days?

If we really wish to see our country as a super power, we must realise that the first step towards it is believing that we can be one, not just on Republic/ Independence Day, but every moment. But we also need to keep in mind the challenges facing our country, and work towards finding solutions for these problems. We need to keep in mind that real patriotism is all about being practical, and not about being jingoistic.

Anyways, Wishing every one a very Happy Republic Day

( just can'help using the tricolour )