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Being Proud To Be Indian

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Should we be proud to be Indian?

I have noticed that most Sikhs are anti Indian and rarely label themselves as Indian. They care more about being Punjabi which their is nothing wrong with.

But why should we not be proud to be Indian?? This is where we come from after all.

I've noticed how other nationalities are always going on about how proud they are of their countries. Ie Spanish, Greek and also other Latin countries like Brazil, Mexico.But when we as Indians have so much to be proud of as a country ie India is hopefully on its way to becoming a superpower. And countless other achievements. sending rocket into space.India being a one of the most visited places on earth due to its great food, culture and people and landmarks.

However, when someone asks us, particularly a white person we usually describe ourselves as being Punjabi or British instead and shy away from being Indian like its some kind of embarrassment. I think this is due to the racism suffered in the past and the stereo types the western media portrays Indians as being ie snake charmers,being poor and dirty ie living on the streets. That may exists but there is a great amount of wealthy people in India.Poverty exist everywhere. If I where a sports person for instance I would love to describe myself as Indian and take great pride in my nationality.

We have just as right to say are Indian as a Hindu from India. we are collection of people from many different religions and cultures and we should be proud to say loud to other people that we love India and we love being Indian.

I'm not saying we should not be proud to be Punjabi. We can be proud of being both. As far as im concerned India is the best country on earth! No other country can compare.

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There is only one reason why Sikhs shy away from the Indian label and that is what happened in 1984.

I don't dislike India or it's people, it's the government policies I don't like.

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Should we be proud to be Indian?

I have noticed that most Sikhs are anti Indian and rarely label themselves as Indian. They care more about being Punjabi which their is nothing wrong with.

But why should we not be proud to be Indian?? This is where we come from after all.

I've noticed how other nationalities are always going on about how proud they are of their countries. Ie Spanish, Greek and also other Latin countries like Brazil, Mexico.But when we as Indians have so much to be proud of as a country ie India is hopefully on its way to becoming a superpower. And countless other achievements. sending rocket into space.India being a one of the most visited places on earth due to its great food, culture and people and landmarks.

However, when someone asks us, particularly a white person we usually describe ourselves as being Punjabi or British instead and shy away from being Indian like its some kind of embarrassment. I think this is due to the racism suffered in the past and the stereo types the western media portrays Indians as being ie snake charmers,being poor and dirty ie living on the streets. That may exists but there is a great amount of wealthy people in India.Poverty exist everywhere. If I where a sports person for instance I would love to describe myself as Indian and take great pride in my nationality.

We have just as right to say are Indian as a Hindu from India. we are collection of people from many different religions and cultures and we should be proud to say loud to other people that we love India and we love being Indian.

Brother I think you picked up an important topic of identity, there has been alot of talk about what identity means in a multicultural melting pot such as those presented in western countries. We can identify ourselves by our religion, by our nationality, by our ethnicity, by our historical relevance, by our age group or even gender or sometimes occupation (banker/doctor/engineer).

Being a Sikh doesn't contradict the identity of being an Indian since one is a religious identity and the other is a geographical identity which can relate to nationality, but when it comes to ethnicity some are skeptical about calling themselves Indian. I think we would eventually fall into the trap Pakistan has whereby it denies so much of it's past being a part of India and it's roles that it has invented a whole series of lies of how it's entire nation was a product of an import from arabia- from waterless deserts.

India is already a superpower but a worrying one, due to the nature of the corruption which exists in the country, when it comes to bribes, money laundry, extortion. From top-to-bottom corrupt, you can't get basic administration done without bribes or silly slow dones. Things such as court cases can last a life time which is a ridiculous amount of time where by justice is not served or served to late. I think we take for granted some of India's greatest problems don't just effect solely sikhs they do effect Hindus. Also in the image Gandhi and Nerhu shaped for India it removed punjab as a central focus, we saw the removal of Indian cinema away from punjab to mumbai. We saw the intellectual centre change, punjab played a great role in the writing of many books, especially many great punjabi muslim writers- people like Syed Muhammad Latif became unknown.

We saw the removal of many Sikhs in high ranking administration roles that the british had earlier appointed. The british were more fascinated with Sikhs in India then Hindus were and perhaps in some ways it's unfair to expect the same treatment. We did earn the respect of many british officers in both anglo-skh wars aswell as our general way of being. For some hindus they see Sikhs as an offshot of Hindus who don't have anything amazingly new about them but adopted ancient practices and rejected practices of tolerance- so a negative outlook.

The British having come across the muslim identity paradigm have become unsure of what post-imperialism identity has lead to, what is the identity of these people who have come through diaspora. The whole issue of putting punjabi next to british is a direct confusion of the layman who can't distinguish the difference between ethnicity, nationality and religion. For some nationality and ethnicity are the same.

Poverty may exist everywhere but in India abject poverty exists, a type of poverty where people can't afford to feed themselves or have the basic needs. Poverty in the west means a person can't afford to purchase more then 1 television or more then 1 set of appliances held in their home. In India poverty is not being able to afford the very next meal. India's lack of innovation, research and development handicaps it's economy, aswell it's lack of fairness overall and corruption overall. You can't even settle a small trade dispute (something normal for large companies).

I don't think there is anything wrong with identifying yourself to have a connection with India's past, with the poor people of india have done nothing wrong to us, or to the vivid past of when plastic surgery, Ayurveda, mathematics, sciences all excelled in India. Why shouldn't we connect ourselves with India's golden age, what India has become now is far from ideal. Basic sanitation is off, water supplies are all contaminated with e-coli and other bacterium. The pressure of the water is flawed, a lack of stable supply of electricity doesn't exist, the speed of internet if it even exists is slow at best, India's road situation is insane, many people die from india's unsafe roads which run without regulations. India's postal service is flawed people steal valuables even out of courier post without shame, if something like that happened here a full investigation would be launched and people would lose their job.

People are dumping nuclear waste in india there is no such thing as ofcom in india, even if there was they take bribes and don't do their job. It's difficult to book a simple ticket for a train or bus which is worse than transport for london's service. Standing in a line to get a train ticket in punjab is horrific, with all sorts of insects in an half open ground, poor sanitation, no disinfectant used at all. Forgot to mention the torture and human rights violations that go on among Indian police. Sometimes it's the smallest of things which are annoying of india such as buildings and structures without plaster, marble, paint. Or it has rotten paint with mould growing, not to mention lack of roads or broken roads. Not to forget electrical hazards, lack of following standards some people can't be bothered to fit a switch and just connect a live wire together with the potential of getting electrocuted. Or the dishonesty to steal bulbs from street lamps, signs and from phone booths (which exist rarely).

The times you have to wait to get a ticket or any other service is awful. People don't even say please or thank you when it comes to attaining a product, service trade in India. I think we should look at Japan and see how far it came from it's imperial period. Japan is doing very well. Regardless we have a long way to go before we can manifest our vision of truly living the gurus. But identifying yourself as India isn't a sin.

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Yes good post username1. We don't want to deny our pre Sikh history like the Pakistanis. Most of the Indus Valley civilisation is in Pakistan yet they barely mention it because it isn't Islamic. The reason why Pakistani punjabis dislike speaking in Punjabi is because it predates Islam's arrival in India.

At the end of the day Sikhi does have a lot of similarities with Hinduism. The whole idea of reincarnation, meditation and the aim of breaking the circle of life and death. However, I think over time Hinduism got away from the original message, it became exclusive to high caste people, the people began to worship holy men (like Krishna) instead of the one god etc. That is why I believe Guru Nanak was sent, to show people the right path again.

However it's a shame that there is still so much caste discrimination amongst Sikhs.

You also get a lot of Sikhs who are anti Hindi at all costs, yet so much of bani is in Hindi!

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The way I see it is, the Indian Sub continent(India, Pakistan, Bangla, nepal, Sri Lanka) is not one country. Although it is part of Asia but it actually deserves to be considered a separate continent on it's own. It is more diverse, multi lingual, multi religious, multi ethnic than Europe which is considered a separate continent. The Indian sub continent has a great history, it is home to great Rishi Munis, Peers, Fakirs, Bhagats, Scholars, Kings, Warriors and of course the greatest of all the Gurus. So as a Desi I can feel proud of being part of the Indian Sub continent, but that does not mean I am proud of being part of the modern entity called the "Indian Union" which is a creation of the British. Sikhs need a nation state of their own, and this became even more evident after what happened in 1984. Without our own country we will continue to face genocides at the hands of others.

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I am proud to be a British Sikh. As a British Sikh I feel that I have more freedom to express my faith in Britain than in India. Also I have Panjabi heritage not Indian. My mother tongue is Panjabi not Hindi. My diet is mostly Panjabi food, so therefore I prefer to classify myself as a British Panjabi. Furthermore I feel an attachment to the whole of Panjab including West Panjab which is where Nankana Sahib and Lahore (previous centre of the Sikh Empire) both are.

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Sant Jarnail Singh ji Bhindrawale Mahapurkh said we are not vak vadis (separatists), but the day they the indian government attack Darbar Sahib the foundation for khalistan will be laid, and that is what happened as we all know,

So to my way of thinking we ceased to be indians or hindustanis from that day forth, not that we hate the ordinary man / hindu in the street or the land it self after all we are part of it and it is where our Gurus and ancestors came from.

but rather it is the ideology of modern india and what it stands for the corruption, one law for the rich and another for the poor and the treatment of minorities and the poor, 1984 and the treatment of sikhs in prisons etc, so if you are proud of these facts then call yourself an indian, but not i and not in my name.

Khalistan Zindabad !!

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Yes good post username1. We don't want to deny our pre Sikh history like the Pakistanis. Most of the Indus Valley civilisation is in Pakistan yet they barely mention it because it isn't Islamic. The reason why Pakistani punjabis dislike speaking in Punjabi is because it predates Islam's arrival in India.

At the end of the day Sikhi does have a lot of similarities with Hinduism. The whole idea of reincarnation, meditation and the aim of breaking the circle of life and death. However, I think over time Hinduism got away from the original message, it became exclusive to high caste people, the people began to worship holy men (like Krishna) instead of the one god etc. That is why I believe Guru Nanak was sent, to show people the right path again.

However it's a shame that there is still so much caste discrimination amongst Sikhs.

You also get a lot of Sikhs who are anti Hindi at all costs, yet so much of bani is in Hindi!

Thanks for the appreciation. As for punjabi some muslims claim they invented it (spoken not script- they used shahmukhi script), that people like Sheikh Farid were the first writers of it and the use of arabic and persian in punjabi is justification for why punjabi was their innovation before Sikh ripped off their language with their sufism and turned it against them.

I think we have to appreciate what happens when we deny the past, we can re-produce Afghanistan like environments. The dark ages took place in the west simply right after christianity had become successfully in destroying the past from the minds of people. Long forgotten where the names of plato, aristotle and Socrates. The renaissance thrived when their names, their works came back. While the dark ages took place, some of the middle east started to grow in economy through it's sciences from the works of such greek and other persian philosophers, the remnants of the once proud Zoroastrian nation.

It's not a secret, Pakistan is a mess and doesn't have it's house in order. The last thing we want is to become anything like them, while they are off chasing a imaginary dream of emulating the most perfect man (lol), to create the most perfect nation they are actually going backwards in terms of international standards. Places like Japan and Brazil are going forwards. South America is rediscovering it's aztec past and the western world is rediscovering it's Roman, Greek and Norse pasts.

India as it is seems to be the lands of which the Vedas were prevalent. It also compromises of the nations Aurangzeb conquered. It also seems to be mentioned in other ancient Hindu/Indian literature. Gurbani isn't exactly in Hindi, gurbani compromises of many languages which were all incorporated into the standards of forming gurmukhi punjabi. The Sikh gurus standardized punjabi aswell.

I don't think a true Sikh can be against one specific language but against losing their own. Part of the political struggles facing punjab is removing punjabi as a public arena language, demeaning punjabi to a backwards tongue while praising hindi as a sophisticated tongue (even though it came from a rural community aswell). The laymen of geographical regions however tend to seek one language and from the central government there is a pressure to eradicate local dialects in a bid to unify india under a more central culture. In Maharashtra, Maharatis are very proud of their language and I doubt they want to see Maharati replaced with hindi.

Here is a map of Aurangzeb's empire: (here are a series of maps which relate to various mughals their expansion and shrinkage of empires http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00maplinks/mughal/roolvinkset/roolvinkset.html )

map3max.jpg

Much before Aurangzeb is King Ashoka's empire from 250 BC Source (http://www.columbia.edu/itc/mealac/pritchett/00maplinks/early/ashoka/ashoka.html

)

joppenmax.jpg

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