Ashok R. Kelkar



[Abstract : India's nationhood is placed in a novel perspective of history and forecast]


An animal lives in the here and the now. The human animal extends the here to there and yonder the settlement, the region and so on. Having the capacity to recall and to anticipate, the human animal extends the now to then and forever Oral history and Oral forecast, written history and written forecast and so on. The nation is the modern European contribution to this expansion of the human horizon with its political and economic support and its discursive, stylistic, and symbolic expression. Everybody is now speaking of globalization without realizing that India has a lot to teach in this matter to the rest of the world. Over many centuries India has evolved its own version of mini-globalization, something in between the European nation state and the United Nations (The European Union is but a poor copy of the Indian Union!)


What has been the drive cowards the emergence of the Indian Union? What has been the underlying spirit that the Indian Flag symbolizes?


(i)                 Fraternity in liberty rather than untrammeled pursuit of individual happiness.

(ii)                Fraternity through justice rather than justice as equality in mediocrity.

(iii)              Diversity and unity rather than diversity by itself or unity by itself.

(iv)              Panchasheel in relation to the rest of the world rather than any dream of world hegemones.


Into that heaven let our country awake!





This is a note dated 19-06-2004 in response to an appeal from the Flag Foundation of India (12 Bhikaiji Cama Place, New Delhi 110 066) for a book and exhibition on the Indian Flag in preparation.