‘Vandey Matram’ a well known slogan is taken from ‘Ananda Math’, a novel of national fame in which there is patriotic poem vandey matram. In this poem poet portrays motherland as a great goddess. This novel is written in Bengali script by Bankim Chanda Chatterjee, one of the first two graduates of India, who possessed degree from Calcutta Vishav Vidhiyalaya in british period. He was born in Bengal province in a hindu family and became young in lovely atmosphere and took education in Calcutta. He was a great nationalist with deep love for India. He used to agonize hours daily to think it over that how to get free his motherland from turmoil of British invaders.
His novel ‘Ananda Math’ is such type of creation, which spread the new wave of life among the freedom fighters. Bankim Chanda Chatterjee was born in Bangla Culture, where Devi puja is most popular celebration throughout the State and significant socio-culture event in Bengali society, in which they spend money lavishly.
I also got a chance to have a close look at the culture of West Bengal, during my father’s posting there. I was very much surprised, when I saw people whatever they may be Christian or Muslim celebrating Durga Puja jointly with their other Hindu brothers, wearing new clothes along with all family members, walking from one Pandal ( pandal is fabricated structure, either temporary or permanent, in a religious ceremonies including weddings) to other taking sweets etc. All that amazed me very much, I realized that the mixed culture of Bengal may have taken centuries to build and now it has gotten so much strength that even this time, when religious fanaticism is spreading all over the world, the unity and brotherhood is unbreakable in West Bengal even in religious celebrations.
Bankim Chanda Chatterjee wanted to cash these religious sentiments of the people of Bengal and gave them a new dimension of nationalism. He prepared his own imagination into the poem ‘Vandey Matram’. In the summary of poem poet portrays India as mother of Indians with the qualities of Goddesses within, like Laxmi- who supposed to shower money and prosperity, Durga- who kills the devils and saves from evil enemy, Saraswati- which provides education. He tries to personify country as mother or Goddess of Indian people, which had cores of hands and faces with extraordinary qualities and powers, who is above all Goddesses. He wishes to worship such a great Goddess, who takes care of her sons. His motive was to provoke the feeling of patriotism inside Indians.
In the novel ‘Ananda Math’ this poem Vandey Matram came as a song, which gives power and energy to fight against British government to the soldiers of freedom of country. And poet succeeded to draw the religious sentiments of the people and put them into the national stream. Poet through his courage and excellent noble song prepared his countrymen to sacrifice their lives for the sake of their Nation, which is like their ‘mother’ and portrayed as above all Goddesses. He gave the slogan ‘Vandey Matram’ to gather Indians at one platform with full energy and awareness for their freedom.
Many other writers and poets also make their successful efforts to develop the strong feelings of nationality among Indians through their novels, stories, scripts, poem, dramas, songs, newspapers and magazines. And draw the attention of Indian people towards the atrocities of the Britishers. Our great writers took significant part in public awakening towards government’s ill policies. The name of nationalist writers and poets will remain immortal in the history of India. Some of them are Bhartandu Harish Chand, Mollana Halli, Ravinder Nath Tagore, Bankim Chanda Chatterjee,Vishnu Shastri Chiplankar, Nazrul Islam and Dr. Iqbal, Mahakavi Subramaniya Bharathietc.
Deprivation, politically and economically organized Indians, against British government 1857. The people united because of facing atrocities created by foreign invaders. The brave revolts were very strong but suppressed by police and army. The achievement of revolt was a firm decision to achieve freedom from British rulers. The people made it aim of their life. In 1857 the British government started crushing the Muslims, specially because they thought that the Muslims were fully responsible for revolt, later on 1880 the Britishers started teasing Hindu community and suggested Muslims to keep a distance from congress, because they are not your real friend and convinced the Muslim leaders that congress is the organization of Hindus were the rights of Muslims are not looked after. As a result Muslim league was organized and British government succeeded to put differences between two brothers and to weaken the National party ‘Congress’. And also English Historians abrogate the history of the Mughals, in which Mughal kings were shown as dictators over Hindus and sympathetic with Muslims. These all were implemented under the policy of ‘divide and rule’. Bengal division was also a part of this policy. In 1905 Lord Curzon divided Bengal Province into two parts, the first part having West Bengal with capital city Calcutta and the other part includes East Bengal and Assam with the capital city of Dhaka, where Muslims were in majority. United community was divided first time for creating differences.
But this division was not accepted by Bengalis they proved their unity by organizing rallies, celebrations of ‘Rakhsha Bandhan’ in between Hindu-Muslim and Holi by burning foreign goods. They started movement ‘Indigenous and Boycott’ with chanting slogan ‘ Vandey Matram’. The sound of slogan was heard all over the country. There was a positive response and full support was given by other parts of National. At last in 1911 the government was compelled to take back the decision and Bengal was merged into one again.
Later on Khilafat movement runs by Ali brothers (Mohd. Ali and Shokat Ali), Molana Azmal Khan etc. In 1919 declared that Muslims will not extend any co-operation to British on account of the atrocities done by them in Turkey, until the government will not agree or fulfill their demand. Due to some reason Khilafat movement turned meaningless, then Gandhi ji and other leaders found it golden chance to join Muslims with national stream, it was necessary to unite all Indians to achieve their common goal. As such Gandhi ji backed the Khilafat movement and joint the demand of free India and compensation of ‘Jallian Walla Bagh’. All the people united at the call of Gandhi ji by forgetting their differences and gave full support to the congress.
Then British government became more and more active to break Hindu-Muslim unity. In the mean time Mopla revolt was very unfortunate in which 3000 Mopla farmers were killed by British army in east of Malabar distt in south India. Some landlords backed by Britishers, were used, the massacre was done in the name of dispersing two warring groups. This was the period of rampage, violence and disruption caused by rioters and government was behind every riot, as a result innocent people of India started losing the great power of unity and made themselves a tool in hands of enemy.
Gandhi ji took all people at one platform and started the movement jointly and once again slogans, like- ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’, ‘Vandey Matram’, ‘Inquilab Zindabad’, ‘Agrezon Bharat Chodo’ were heard.The different slogans were chanted all over India and became successful to unite Indians at one platform because of people’s common mission of freedom. It was very necessary to unite the common people, without any political motivation or religious abrasion. And the meaning of slogans whatever may be, but the historical significance is immortal.
After achieving the goal of freedom, it is necessary to keep this spirit alive. But we should not forget that India is a huge and diverse country with lots of different religions, languages and culture. It is one of the Nations where eighteen languages and about equal numbers of songs have been nationalized and Hindi is above all, only because it is linking language and common in all over India. These are adopted only to maintain unity and relation among the different sects of people and to treat them equally, not to create the differences among them. None of the language, poem, dress code, culture or slogan stands for certificate of nationality. People of the nation are totally free to adopt any whichever suitable to their culture or religious sentiments. The top priority should always be given to unite the people for strength, progress and better prospects of the nation.
This is the only way by which the unity and integrity of the nation will be restored forever and nobody with the bad intention will dare to look into our nation. This unity and integrity of nation was also dream of poet, Bankim Chanda Chatterjee who turned this precious dream into reality by using lovely script as a tool. Nobody is having the authority of breaking the unity of the nation using the same tool.