Monday, January 15, 2018



India is the only country in the world has two names: Bharat in Hindi and India in English. 

During my first visit to US in 1996, I had asked a question to an American, we are Indian but why do you call some of your population Red Indian? They are redskins and are natives of North America, he replied. They might had migrated from Asia? The natives/primitive tribes are called Indians generally. Somebody mentioned that as per Oxford Dictionary - 1900 century - Page no. 789, "India" word means Poor - Old fashioned - Criminal people. Christopher Columbus, who mistakenly believed that the Antilles were the islands of the Indian Ocean, known to Europeans as the Indies. Christopher landed on Caribbean Island and identified it Indies. Somebody argued that India' has everything to do with the word 'Indigenous' and very little to do with the word 'Indus' because the Persians who came through Indus did not call it India and the Europeans in whose era the name 'India' caught up, did not come through Indus! However popular belief is that the name India is derived from Indus, which originates from the Old Persian word Hindu. The latter term stems from the Sanskrit word Sindhu, which was the historical local appellation for the Indus River. The ancient Greeks referred to the Indians as Indoi which translates as "The people of the Indus". We were exploring the options. 

River Sindhu (Indus/Hindu) originates from the vicinity of Mansarovar in Tibetan Plateau (West Tibet) and flows through India (J&K: Ladakh, Gilgit, Baltistan) and Pakistan. One of it’s tributaries Nara was flowing through Kutch and was meeting the Sea at Narayan Sarovar, but after the high magnitude earthquake of 1819, a barrier Alladam Bund (80 km long, 6 km wide and 6 m high) was created by the nature, stopped the flow of the river. However, Kutch is getting the under current water of Sindhu in the pockets of Nakhtrana where agriculture is very rich even today in the so called desert district. 

Are we Hindu or Indian?

Before independence, we were popularly known as Hindustan. But after creation of Pakistan, we have preferred the name Bharat/India. With word Hindu, the identity of the religion attached. Those who believe in many deities, believe in the theory of rebirth, believe in idols worship, believe in rituals, follow the umbrella religion of Hindu are called Hindu and for them India is Bharat, their mother land. Within Hindus, there are people who don’t believe in idol worship and pray the formless God. Adweta philosophy believes in the theory of One God. There are others who were worshipping nature, living in forest and were unaware of the theories of Hinduism. There were many who changed their faith, followed the faith of the Kings, followed Buddhism, Jainism, Islam, Chritianity. The invaders whenever came, came in small numbers and were mostly single. Over the years, they married and settled here and merged into the main stream of Indianism. 

Hindu, Sindhu or Indu....HSI...people may argue but at the end of the day, the island belong to the permanent residents whether the natives or the invaders or the immigrants.

India is our mother land, 

सारे जहाँ से अच्छा हिन्दोस्तां हमारा
हम बुलबुलें हैं इसकी ये गुलिस्तां हमारा ll

Jai Hind.

15 January 2018


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