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National Insignia of India

National Insignia of India

National Insignia of India namely Flag, Anthem, Emblem, Song, Sport, Tree, Flower, Fruit, Bird and Animal. To keep length of page a little short I’ve divided it into parts, where in First part we’ll know about Flag, Anthem, Emblem, Song and Sport. And in the 2nd Part we’ll know about Bird, Animal, Fruit, Flower and tree.

Insignia is the plural of Latin word, which means emblem, symbol, is a symbol or token of personal power, status or office, or of an official body of government or jurisdiction. Insignia are especially used as an emblem of a specific or general authority. Here we’ll get to know about the national Insignia of India.

India’s National Flag

The Indian flag was designed as a symbol of freedom. The late Prime Minister Nehru called it a flag not only of freedom for ourselves, but a symbol of freedom to all people.

The Indian flag is a horizontal tri-color in equal proportion of deep Saffron on the top symbol of strength, courage, sacrifice and the spirit of renunciation of the country, white in the middle symbol of peace, purity and truth with Dharma Chakra and dark green at the bottom symbol of fertility, faith, growth and auspiciousness of the land.

The ratio of the width to the length of the flag is two is to three. In the centre of the white band, there is a wheel in Navy Blue known as Dharma Chakra (Ashok Chakra) replaced the Gandhian spinning wheel to add historical “depth” and separate the national flag from that of the Indian National Congress. Its diameter approximates the width of the white band and it has 24 spokes. This Dharma Chakra depicted the “wheel of the law” in the Sarnath Lion Capital made by the 3rd-century BC Mauryan Emperor Ashoka. The chakra intends to show that there is life in movement and death in stagnation.

National Anthem of India

Jana Gana Mana is the national anthem of India. Written in Bengali, it is the first of five stanzas of an ode composed by Rabindranath Tagore, the song Jana Gana Mana was first sung on December 27, 1911 at the Calcutta session of the Indian National Congress. On January 24, 1950, the Constituent Assembly adopted the song as the National Anthem of India.The complete song consists of five stanzas. The first stanza comprises the full version of the National.

Devanagari transliteration
Jana gaṇa mana adhināyaka jaya hē
Bhārata bhāgya Vidhātā
Pañjāba Sindhu Gujarāṭa Marāṭhā
Drābiḍa Utkala Baṅga
Vindhya Himācala ẏamunā Gaṅgā
Ucchala jaladhi taraṅga
Taba śubha nāmē jāgē
Taba śubha āśisa māgē
Gāhē taba jaya gāthā
Jana gaṇa maṅgala dāyaka jaya hē
Bhārata bhāgya bidhātā
Jaya hē jaya hē jaya hē
Jaya jaya jaya jaya hē

Translation to English
O! Dispenser of India’s destiny, thou art the ruler of the minds of all people
Thy name rouses the hearts of Punjab, Sindh, Gujarat, the Maratha country,
in the Dravida country, Utkala and Bengal;
It echoes in the hills of the Vindhyas and Himalayas,
it mingles in the rhapsodies of the pure waters of Yamuna and the Ganges.
They chant only thy name.
They seek only thy auspicious blessings.
They sing only the glory of thy victory.
The salvation of all people waits in thy hands,
O! Dispenser of India’s destiny, thou art the ruler of the minds of all people
Victory to thee, Victory to thee,
Victory, Victory, Victory, Victory to thee!.

India’s National Emblem

The National Emblem of India is a replica of the Lion of Sarnath, near Varanasi in Uttar Pradesh. The Lion Capital was erected in the third century BC by Emperor Ashoka to mark the spot where Buddha first proclaimed his gospel of peace and emancipation to the four quarters of the universe. The National emblem is thus symbolic of contemporary India’s reaffirmation of its ancient commitment to world peace and goodwill.

The four lions (one hidden from view) – symbolizing power, courage and confidence – rest on a circular abacus. The abacus is girded by four smaller animals – guardians of the four directions: the lion of the north, the elephant of the east, the horse of the south and the bull of the west. The abacus rests on a lotus in full bloom, exemplifying the fountainhead of life and creative inspiration. The motto ‘Satyameva Jayate’ inscribed below the emblem in Devanagari script means ‘truth alone triumphs’.

National Song of India

Composed by Bankim Chandra, this song appears in the Bengali novel Anand Math. The English translation of Vande Mataram rendered by Shree Aurobindo, is considered to be the “official” and best. The first stanza of this song has been given the status of our national song.

Devanagari transliteration
vande mātaram
sujalāṃ suphalāṃ
malayajaśītalām
śasya śyāmalāṃ
mātaram
śubhra jyotsnā pulakita yāminīm
phulla kusumita drumadalaśobhinīm
suhāsinīṃ sumadhura bhāṣiṇīm
sukhadāṃ varadāṃ
mātaram

Translation to English
My obeisance to Mother India!
With flowing beneficial waters
Filled with choicest fruits
Sandal wood wafts cool
Lovely mooned nights
O mother! My obeisance to you!
Where the bright morning light and thrilled nights
Are dressed in attires wondrous flora abloom
Sweet speaker of sweet languages
A happy boon are you, o mother…
Aha…dear mother, I salute you!

India’s National Sport

Hockey is the National Game of India. Unmatched excellence and incomparable virtuosity brought India a string of Olympic gold medals. The brilliant Indians brought a touch of black magic to their play and the ball juggling feats of the Indians were a sheer delight.

The Golden Era of hockey in India was the period from 1928 – 1956 when India won 6 consecutive gold medals in the Olympics. During the Golden Era, India played 24 Olympic matches, won all 24, scored 178 goals (at an average of 7.43 goals per match) and conceded only 7 goals. The two other gold medals for India came in the 1964 Tokyo Olympics and the 1980 Moscow Olympics.

In this post we’ve covered about 5 National Insignia of India, rest are covered in the next post i.e. National Insignia of India (Part 2)

The Best Known Ethnic Weaves and Prints of India

Indian handlooms are known for their richness, exquisiteness, variety and fine quality. They are an integral part of Indian culture and no festival or occasion is complete without them. The passage of time has brought about a change in the weaves, patterns and designs boasting of glamor, magnificence and exquisiteness but the importance of handlooms still remains the same.

As an economic activity, handlooms comprise the largest cottage industry in the country. Millions of looms across the country are engaged in weaving cotton, silk and other natural fibers to bring out traditional beauty of India’s precious heritage and also providing livelihood to millions of families. There is hardly a village where weavers do not exist weaving out the traditional beauty of the region. The skills and activities are kept alive by passing the skills from generation to generation. What sets our handloom apart is the excellent workmanship, color combination and fine quality.

Indian weavers blend myths, faiths, symbols and imagination to bring an appealing dynamism to the fabric. It is the distinct form of art, weave and color usage of the artisan that give every region its distinctive identity and uniqueness. Today varieties are created using contemporary fiber, modern designs and new techniques of weaving.

Popular weaves of India

Andhra Pradesh

Andhra Pradesh is renowned for its handloom. It produces the most exclusive sarees and dress-materials, having delicate and distinctive designs. Each saree boasts of an intricate pallu and a delicate border adornd with gold thread work. The looms of Pochampalli, Venkatagiri, Gadwal, Narayanpet, Dharmavaram, Uppadas are well-kown for their silk and cotton sarees all over India. Mangalgiri cottons and Kalmkari prints are the other varieties of the state. Usually, both the loom and the fabric are known by the name of the place.

Bihar

Bihar is know for Tussar silk which is a non mulberry silk variety and handwoven cotton Mulmuls. The weaver community developed high level of silk in tussar silk spinning to give unique low-twist tussar silk yarns which helped create the characteristics tussar textured silk fabrics that are unique. The Mulmuls of Madhubani, like the paintings, are still a craze amongst lovers of fine cotton fabrics.

Chhattisgarh

The ‘Kosa’ of Chhattisgarh is a type of tussar. It comes in varied weave patterns that are block printed, painted or embroidered, The sturdy kosa yarn called giccha is coarse and is more durable. The silk is is valued for its purity and texture. Kosa Silk is drawn from cocoons especially grown on Arjun, Saja or Sal trees. Available naturally in shades of gold-pale, dark, honey, tawny, baccoto beige, creamy, etc.

Gujarat

Gujarat is famous for its Patola print. This is a tie and dye technique which requires intricate weaving thereby making it expensive and exclusive. They are known for their flaming vibrant colors and geomatric designs interspersed with folk motifs. Gujarat handlooms are also well known for the block prints using vegetable dyes and the famous Kutch embroidery.

Jammu and Kashmir

Jammu and Kashmir is popular for its printed pure silk, crepe and chiffon sarees, kashida embroidered dresses, the pashmina shawls with delicate hand embroidery. The tweeds and embroideries are so unique that it is a pride to be in possession of them. The elegant color and bold embroidery make them very popular among every age group.

Karnataka

Karnataka is the home of mulberry silk. The Mysore silk sarees with pure zari borders are the dream possessions of every woman in India. The printed silk, silk sarees with kasuti embroidery, the belgaum sarees are the other famous varieties available in the state.

Madhya Pradesh

Madhya Pradesh is the home of delicate Chanderi Silk and Maheshwari sarees. Soft, subtle shades in delicate weaves come off the looms in Chanderi. Here, silk is used as the wrap and cotton for the weft to produce the famous Chanderi sarees. The Maheshwari craftsmen have perfected the art of weaving a wide variety of checks and designs.

Maharashtra

Maharashtra is known for its rich and exquisite Paithani brocades that are the prized heirlooms and possessions for many even today. They come in Kum-kum colors with contrasting borders with gold coin or dot motifs. The Vidarbha Karvati saree in kosa silk is famous for its texture and pattern with temple design borders which are unique and elegant.

Orissa

Orissa is famous for its sambalpuri and Bomkai handlooms. Sambalpuri ikat is a double tie and dye art where intricate designs based on mythology are created by the tie and dye technique in both silk and mercerized cotton. The bomkari is the other special variety where border designs are based on mythology with animal and floral patterns. Due to the richness in fabric used, these handlooms are priced higher and look more elegant with time.

Rajasthan

Rajasthan is very famous for the bandhani or bandhej which is also a tie and dye technique. The leheriya is a special variety of tie and die where diagonal stripes are created in cotton, silk, crepe, chiffon and kota doria fabrics. It is also famous for its sanganeri block, Dabu and bagru prints. Gota, zardosi and zari are used for bridal and formal ensembles. The patch work especially in home furnishing is gaining popularity.

Tamil Nadu

The Chettinads and Coimbatore cottons are famous of Tamil Nadu. They come in stripes and checks with traditional borders which appear rich and aristocratic.

Uttar Pradesh

The Lucknow chickan embroidery is very famous of Uttar Pradesh. Delicately designed and embroidered on cottons, crepes and chiffon, they are usually available in pastel colors and reflect elegance.

West Bengal

The Baluchari and Kantha work sarees in cotton and silk of West Bengal are of great attraction. The Balucharis reflect the rustic culture of our villages while the Kantha embroidery exhibits the creativity of our artisans. It is an exotic form of embroidery in which the eye, emotion and skills are combined into one. The Dacaai’s Tangails and Batiks are the popular cottons of the state.

The Khans of Bollywood

Introducing the only folks in the Indian Film Industry (Bollywood) who really matter “The KHANS” Shahrukh, Aamir, Salman, Saif Ali Khan not a day goes by in Bollywood without the mention of one of these names. They rule Bollywood bringing in the highest Box Office collections everywhere they go. Each an accomplished actor in their own right, they have an endless list of movie titles to their name. So which one of these stars the real King Khan.. I’ll let you decide.

Shahrukh Khan

This Delhi born boy of Pathan origin has ruled Indian cinema after Amitabh Bachchan. Also known as “King Khan,” Shahrukh started his career as a TV serial actor. His first movie, Deewana was released in1992. In this movie, he played the character of an obsessive lover. This movie with the then most popular actress of Hindi cinema Divya Bharti was a great success.

In his next few films Baazigar, Darr, he stuck to the same type of character and these movies were very successful as well. In 1995, Shahrukh appeared in Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge, a movie produced by Yash Chopra. The movie created a huge wave around India. Then movies like: Dil to Pagal Hai , Kuch Kuch Hota Hai, Mohabbatein, Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham, Kal Ho Naa Ho and Veer-Zaara, Main hoon na and more recently Chak de India and Om Shanti Om has made Shahrukh one of the most successful actors of Bollywood.

Aamir Khan

The 90’s Bollywood is the history of the three Khans: Shahrukh, Salman and Aamir. Aamir was born to a film family,His father Tahir Hussain is a producer; his uncle Nasir Hussain was a director. He has acted in a few films directed by his cousin Mansoor Khan. He is the brother of Faisal Khan, with whom he acted in the 2000 film Mela.

Aamir began his career as a child-actor in the film Yaadon Ki Baraat (1973), when he was eight years old. Then at the age of 23, he appeared in his first movie Qayamat se Qayamat Tak. The film was directed by his uncle, Nasir Hussain. The film was a big hit and turned Aamir into a major heart throb. Since then, he didn’t have to look back. Movies like Dil, Dil Hai Ke Manta Nahin, Jo Jeeta Wohi Sikander, Hum Hain Rahi Pyar Ke, Andaz Apna Apna, Rangeela, Raja Hindustani, Ishq, Ghulam, Sarfarosh turned Amir into a top actor of Bollywood. As a producer, his first film Lagaan: Once Upon a Time in India, was the highest grossing film of 2001. The movie was even got nomination for Oscar’s best Foreign Language film. He turned Director with his latest venture Taare Zameen Par. Time magazine refers to him as the Indian ‘Sean Penn’.

Salman Khan

Often known as Bollywood’s Bad boy, his knack of walking into trouble has overshadowed people’s perception of him as an actor.Salman Khan is a figure who loved by lots of people and equally hated by lot.

Born to Salim Khan, a famous screen writer, Salman got his first movie in 1988 Biwi Ho To Aisi. In that movie, he played a supporting role. His big break came in 1989. Maine Pyar Kiya, produced by Rajshri Productions was one of the highest grossing Hindi films. It was Salman’s first movie as a lead character. From there he became the heart throb of Indian cinema who frequently gets rid of his T-Shirt in his films to show his muscles.

In 1994, again he did Hum Apke Hai Kaun with Rajshri Productions and this movie was a block buster. Hum Apke Hai Kaun is one of the all time highest grossing films in Bollywood. Some of his major hit films are: Saajan, Sanam Bewafa, Karan Arjun, Pyar Kiya To Darna Kiya, Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam and of late Partner and Hello.

Saif Ali Khan

Chote Nawab, as he is generally known Saif is the son of famous actress Sharmila Tagore and cricket legend Mansoor Ali Khan, Saif Ali wasn’t sure, growing up, whether he wanted to be a cricketer or a thespian. Up until a few years, many would have said he’d chosen wrong.

Saif made his debut in 1992 with Parampara. He had his major success with the 1994 films Main Khiladi Tu Anari and Yeh Dillagi. However, his acting career thereafter went through a relative slump until 2001, when he was cast in Farhan Akhtar’s hit film, Dil Chahta Hai. The success of this film firmly established Saif as one of the industry’s most bankable stars. He followed it up with memorable performances as a comic eligible bachelor in Kal Ho Naa Ho, a manipulative gangster in Ek Hasina Thi, and a light-hearted cartoonist in Hum Tum. His performance in Hum Tum won him the National Film Award for Best Actor. These commercial successes were followed by critically acclaimed performances in Parineeta and Salaam Namaste, both of which were also hits in India and overseas.