VANDE MATARAM was sung in all government offices on Thursday as per directives of the local administration and various other organisations also followed suit cutting across class, caste and political barriers.
The centenary celebration of the song composed by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee in 1906 did not pass off unheard, as despite protests from certain quarters over alleged connotations of the song with a deity from amongst the Hindu pantheon of Gods, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) led governments made singing of the national song compulsory in their states.
Clearing the air in this regard, the district administration issued a circular making it compulsory for the song to be sung in all government offices at 11 am despite the day having been declared as a local holiday. Following this directive recitation of the first two stanzas, which only have been included in the national song, were recited in all government offices ranging from the Collectorate to Superintendent Police office.
Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) activists led by City president Mukesh Singh Rajawat sang the song at the foot of the Gandhi Statue at Regal Square along with students from Saraswati Shishu Mandir. BJP leader Prakash Rathore organised a group rendition of the song near Chhatribag police station. BJP Alpsankhyak Morcha led by their local president Mubarak Khan organised a similar exercise attended by Muslims in large numbers.
Not to be left behind, Congress leaders Ashok Jaiswal and Salim Pathan held a public recitation of the national song at 9.30 am at Regal Square. The important aspect in this group recitation was that several Muslims also participated. The Youth Congress held a similar group recitation under the leadership of their City president Devendra Singh Yadav and Vijay Baurasi at Palsikar Colony Square.
All three units of the Bharat Vikas Parishad - Tilak, Ahilya and Shivaji - held a mass rendition of the song attended by their members and locals. Lions Club- Sanyog, Greater and Unique, Maheshwari Club- Couples and Preeti, Digamber Jain Porwal Couples Group and Akhil Bharatiya Agrasen Sammelan participated in a group rendition of Vande Mataram at Regal Square.