What does it mean to be free in today's India? What does it mean to be Indian? We spoke to writers and artists to understand the relationship between the self and the nation. Here is a three part series on the same.
Songs of Freedom - Shanta Gokhale | Independence Day Special
Woh Subah Hami Se Aayegi. (We will bring that dawn ourselves)
“True freedom will be the day when those who demand their rights won't be crucified. Punishing the victim is a part of what we see today. Those who are fighting for people's rights are being held up as anti-nationals,” says acclaimed author Shanta Gokhale as she remembers the lyrics of the Sahir Ludhianvi song, "Woh subah kabhi to aayegi (That dawn will come one day)
Songs of Freedom - Ghazi Khan Manganiyar | Independence Day Special
"When I travel outside India, I don't belong to Rajasthan, Jaisalmer or my village. I only belong to India and I am an Indian," says Ghazi Khan Manganiyar. "I am there to represent India. I am there to bring glory to India by spreading the art and culture of India all over the world."
He adds, "We sing songs of Krishna, Ram, Radha, Mirabai and Surdas. We are Muslim Manganiyars but we sing these songs for our audiences. We sing the same songs for our Muslim audiences as well. Wherever you go in our country everything is very colourful. My dear India is full of colours and bright."
Songs of Freedom - Harsh Mander | Independence Day Special
आ चल के तुझे मैं ले के चलूँ एक ऐसे गगन के तले... (Let me take you under a sky where there is no sorrow)
Harsh Mander reminds us of the India we dreamt of. He also laments how far we have deviated from the idea of fraternity and solidarity.
ईश्वर अल्लाह तेरे जहाँ में नफरत क्यों है जंग है क्यों... (Ishwar Allah why is there hatred and war in your world?)