Meghalaya gives an Indigenous touch to National Anthem “Jana Gana Mana”

SHILLONG: The Meghalaya Assembly has given an indigenous touch to the National Anthem “Jana Gana Mana” ahead of the 50th anniversary of Meghalaya’s statehood next year in 2022.

As per reports, Meghalaya Assembly speaker Metbah Lyngdoh had mooted the idea of giving the National Anthem “a local twist” over six months ago. He felt the anthem sung by non-Hindi speakers with the accompaniment of folk instruments would promote the diversity of the nation. Thereafter, he found a musician Lamphang Syiemlieh who liked the concept and was given the project’s responsibility.

Lamphang worked on various legal aspects so that there was no legal or constitutional restriction on improvising the anthem. The improvised anthem was played on September 10 on the first day of the Meghalaya Assembly’s autumn session. Altogether, 10 singers have lent their voice to the improvised anthem. Singers were about to be chosen from the three regions – Garo Hills, Jaintia Hills and Khasi Hills, but no one was available from Garo Hills because of the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic situation. Traditional instruments including bom, duitara, ksing and chigring among others have been used in it. The Meghalaya-style anthem was recorded in a studio in Shillong, reports said.

Meghalaya, one of the most beautiful states in the Northeast region, earned statehood on January 21, 1972. The state, which is known by names like “Scotland of the East” and “Abode of the Clouds”, is inhabited mostly by the Khasis, Garos and Jaintias. Each tribe has its own culture, language and tradition.

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