There is a great misconception about the Romani people. Some even believe that Roma are the people from Romania, which is a completely false statement. The Romani or Roma, are the ethnic group of people who travel from place to place, whose majority currently resides in Europe and America.
Estimates vary, but there is a 12 million strong Roma community spread over the world. However, the precise count remains difficult to undertake for multiple reasons. As many of these people hesitate and refuse to register their identity in official censuses for the fear of discrimination. Some get married with the local population of the native country and thus no longer identify themselves as Romani.
Some historians believe that these people originated from Egypt and thus the tag of ‘gypsy’ was given to them. But under the more realistic definition, the Roma people originated specifically in Northern India and migrated to European countries whose reason and time is still uncertain.
Romani people may be a widely scattered community, however, they do have a flag that binds them together. Their flag got approved in 1971 in London by delegates at the First World Romani conference.
The flag has a bicolor background of blue and green which signifies heaven and earth respectively. And in front, there is a wheel with 16 spokes representing the travelling spirit of Romani people.
They also have an official Roma anthem, which is known as Gelem Gelem (or Djelem Djelem).
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