Feb 18th, 2013 by arima
India – National Symbols
The Republic of India has several national symbols. These symbols were adopted at various times. National symbols of India project the image of India and inspire a feeling of patriotism. These symbols reflect the culture, beliefs and values of India.
The state emblem is called the Sarnath Lion Capital of Ashoka. It is the image of a pillar at Sarnath in Uttar Pradesh installed by Emperor Asoka depicting four lions on the top standing back to back. Its base has an elephant, a galloping horse, a bull and a lion separated by intervening wheels over a bell-shaped lotus and a Dharma Chakra or the Wheel of Law. This symbol was adopted as the National Emblem of India by the Indian Government on 26th January, 1950.
The National Flag of India is known as ‘Tiranga’ in Hindi which means ‘that which has three colors”. The national flag has three rectangular strips with a wheel of law in its centre which signifies the freedom of India and its people. The colours of the rectangular strips are: saffron, white and green. The saffron color represents courage and sacrifice. White represents truth, peace and purity. The green colour represents prosperity and oneness with nature.
Rabindranath Tagore, the Noble prize winner and Indian poet wrote the five stanzas of the song titled ‘Jana-gana-mana’ in Bengali. It was first sung before India got its freedom, in a session of the Indian National Congress held in Calcutta on 27th December, 1911. It was officially adopted as the national anthem of India on 24 January, 1950.
Bankim Chandra Chaterjee, a well known Bengali writer and freedom fighter penned the song ‘Vande Mataram’ for his Bengali novel ‘Anand Math’. The song which is full of patriotism and praises for the motherland was a source of inspiration to many freedom fighters during India’s freedom struggle. Hence this song has been adopted as the National Song of India.
Indian Peacock has been adopted as the national bird of India. The biological name of the species is Pavo cristatus. The male of the species is more attractive than the female. It has a glistening blue breast and neck and a spectacular bronze-green train of around 200 elongated colourful feathers. These birds have always held a pride of place in the mythological tales of India. They are seen as a symbol of royalty and divinity.
The tiger is a majestic, graceful, agile and strong animal having a thick yellow coat of fur with dark stripes on it. The biological name of this now endangered species is Panthera tigris. There are eight native species of tigers found in India. Tiger, the National Animal of India, symbolizes strength, courage and power.
The Banyan tree is the National Tree of India. The biological name of the banyan tree is Ficus Bengalensis. The branches of this shady tree which spread over a large area take roots and keep themselves alive for thousands of years. The Banyan Tree is considered as a symbol of service, shelter and immortality
The Lotus or the water lily, the flower of an aquatic plant of the Nymphaea family has been adopted as the national flower of India. These pink-coloured, big, attractive, floating flowers inspire a sense of serenity and beauty. The Lotus is a symbol of spirituality and the purity.