Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath said on Wednesday that he will give a new shape to Vande Mataram, India’s national song.
“Vande Mataram ko main ek naya roop dunga aur aaj-kal mein ghoshit karunga (I will give Vande Mataram a new form and will announce it in a few days),” he was quoted as saying by ANI.
The Congress leader’s comments came on the day the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) criticised the state government for suspending the practice of reciting the national song in government offices on the first day of every month.
BJP workers held a protest outside the Secretariat against Chief Minister Kamal Nath over Vande Mataram row on Wednesday morning.
For the past 13 years, the Vande Mataram was sung at every government office in MP but on 1 January 2019, officials in the Secretariat did not sing the national song triggering protests from the opposition.
Former Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, who started the practice, reportedly said, “It is unfortunate that the new Congress government has ended this tradition. I demand that it should be reintroduced.”
“All of our 109 MLAs will recite ‘Vande Matram’ at the Madhya Pradesh Secretariat in Bhopal on 7 January 2019,” he was quoted as saying by ANI.
Kamal Nath had on Tuesday said the decision by his government has neither been taken with any political motive nor is the Congress against singing of Vande Mataram.
“The national song is in our hearts and we also sing it from time to time. However, we also believe that merely singing Vande Mataram once a month is not a certificate for one’s patriotism. Love for one’s country cannot be linked to singing the national song once a month,” he said.
“Are those who don’t sing Vande Mataram not patriots?” Kamal Nath asked, adding that patriotism is a feeling which does not require display.