- Vande Mataram was originally written in 1876 and appeared in Anandamath in 1881
- Well before the Congress’ Varanasi session on September 7, 1905, Vande Mataram was adopted as the `National Song’ and won India’s heart as its war cry of freedom
- Poet Sarala Devi Chaudurani sang the national song in the Benares Congress Session in 1905
‘Vande Mataram’, is no less than an epic for our country and holds a special place in the heart of every Indian. The first two words of the title itself are sufficient to induce a great feeling of patriotism.
It would be a surprise for many to know that September 7, 2006, was not the centenary of Vande Mataram. On the contrary, Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay wrote the lyrics of Vande Mataram well before he penned Anandamath, his novel, which described unified Bengal’s sanyasi uprising against tyrannical Muslim rule in the 1770s.
For better clarification, Vande Mataram was originally written in 1876 and appeared in Anandamath in 1881.
Thus, 2006 was not the 100th year of Vande Mataram, but the 129th anniversary of the `National Song”, which was first recited at the Indian National Congress session of 1896.
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Well before the Congress’ Varanasi session on September 7, 1905, Vande Mataram was adopted as the `National Song’ and won India’s heart as its war cry of freedom.
On January 24, 1950, it was brought at par with the National Anthem officially by the Constituent Assembly.
The protest against Vande Mataram because of its ‘idolatrous’ content began in the 1890s. The Congress party surrendered before Islamic opposition at its Kakinada session in 1923 not only on the Vande Mataram issue but also to all symbols and values held national.
The recent HRD ministerial diktat to compulsorily sing the song throughout the country occupied much media space and ignited a debate on India’s national song’s journey over the last 130 years.
The song served as a source of immense strength and inspiration for freedom fighters before India gained freedom.
Take a look at some of the glorious facts related to our National song, ‘Vande Mataram’.
- The National song, ‘Vande Mataram’ was written by the great Bengali poet and writer, Bankim Chandra Chatterjee.
- On January 24, 1950, it was adopted as the National Song of India.
- The National song of India, Vande Mataram is considered as the foundation of encouragement to the people in their struggle for freedom. The National song of India is versed in the Sanskrit and Bengali languages, in the novel ‘Anandmath’ by Bankim Chandra Chatterji.
- The former President of India, Dr. Rajendra Prasad, on January 24, 1950, came up with a declaration in the Constituent Assembly that the song Vande Mataram, which had played a significant part in the historic freedom struggle held in India, should be honoured equally with Jana Gana Mana and must give equal status to it.
- The National song was a part of Bankim Chandra Chatterji’s most famous novel Anand Math (1882) which is set in the events of Sannyasi rebellion.
- The first translation of Bankim Chandra Chatterji’s novel Anand Math, into English was done by Nares Chandra Sen-Gupta, in 1906.
- In the 1896 session of the Indian National Congress, it was the first political event when the National song was sung. On the same occasion, the national song of India was first sung by the Rabindranath Tagore.
- Poet Sarala Devi Chaudurani sang the national song in the Benares Congress Session in 1905.
- The Iron Man of India, Lala Lajpat Rai, published a journal called Vande Mataram from Lahore.
- Vande Mataram was recited in the first political film made by Hiralal Sen in 1905.
- The Sangh Parivar, better known as the Rashtriya Swayam Sewak Sangh (RSS) celebrated the 125th anniversary of the song in 2002.
- Two stanzas of the original song have been officially declared as the National Song of India in 1950 after the independence of India.
- The song was originally written in two languages, Sanskrit and Bengali, in the novel ‘Anandmath’.
- It was also sung by the Dakhina Charan Sen in 1901 after five years during another Congress meeting at Calcutta.
- India’s first political film Hiralal Senmade, made in 1905 ends with the chant Vande Mataram.