Over 1 lakh kids sing National Anthem

Over 1 lakh kids sing National Anthem

In a real tribute to Rabindranath Tagore and the National Anthem he penned, Chief Minister Kiran Kumar Reddy, actor-turned politician K Chiranjeevi, and over one lakh students, including the general public, gathered in the Madanapalle town of Chitoor district in  Andhra Pradesh on Tuesday to sing “Janaganamana,” not to make any record but to commemorate the spirit of India’s independence two days ahead of Republic Day.

The campus of the Besant Theosophical College at Madanapalle, located 120 km from Tirupati, where Tagore reportedly wrote “Janaganamana,” reverberated with the National Anthem.  A “Laksha Gala archana of Jathiya Geetham” was organised on the college campus. Incidentally, it was in Chittoor district that the state anthem of Andhra Pradesh, “Maa Telugu Talliki Mallepoo Danda,” was scripted by Sankarambadi Sundaracharya of Tirupati. Written in 1911, the National Anthem was recited during the Kolkata (then Calcutta) session of the Indian National Congress on December 27. Margaret Cousins, wife of James H Cousins, the then principal of the Besant Theosophical College, attempted to compose the tune in presence of Tagore.

After trying several notations, Margaret, a music teacher by profession finally created the tune that won Tagore’s approval. And, it was at Madanapalle in February 1919 that  its tune was set. On January 24, 1950, after the Constituent Assembly adopted the song in Hindi version, “Janaganamana” became the National Anthem.

It was also in Madanapalle that Tagore translated the National Anthem into English. A copy of the English version is preserved in the library of the Besant Theosophical College in Madanapalle, which he named the “Shantiniketan of the South.”

However, this is not the first time that such a gala event was being organised. In May 2009, Laksha Gala Sankeertanarchana, a record-breaking mass singing, was held at Parade Grounds in Secunderabad in Andhra Pradesh.

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