So far, I have travelled to seven countries and met people of more than 15 nationalities in various capacities and whenever I mention that I am from India, usually there is no follow up ‘glee’ that I see when other people mention their country of origin. In fact, I see a disappointment in the eyes of the person I have conveyed this ‘horrific’ information.
So now that I have the time and space to think about it, I understand the reason why the name ‘India’ does not create any positive emotions in most foreign people.
This article is to give some much needed perspective in this regard and to provide me and the likes of me the right of correct association that we deserve.
At the start of recorded history my country was called Āryāvarta (Sanskrit: आर्यावर्त, “abode of the Aryans).
About 1000 years ago my country was called Bharat, which is another name for the demigod of fire. Pretty awesome so far.
Then the Mughals came to and started calling it Hindustan, meaning the country of Hindus….which I can still live with.
But latest came the Brits and called it India which is a Biblical name and was used for girls born in England but went out of fashion after the people realized it is being used to describe a land of people being tricked and robbed by the Brits who came disguised as traders.
And so started the connotation of the name India being associated with a land of poverty, filth and misery.
The white folks did the same when they reached America. They called the indigenous people INDIANS. These mofos have never had any respect for other races except for the Brits themselves. They even hate their Scottish brethren.
So, from now on I am gonna introduce myself as a Hindustani or even better a Bharati and I know when I say these words and look you in the eye, we will exchange glances of respect and commonality.
PS: We also had French and Portuguese traders also in our country but they were much civilized compared to the folks from England. And maybe this is the reason we still have many French and Portuguese people living in Hindustan peacefully with the other communities. We even have a French actress permanently in Bollywood which maybe one of the things which people much associate with Hindustan.
PPS: On the lighter side, I don’t know what the Rouble means in Russian but in English we can rhyme it with Rubble and so we see where this currency is going. Just a joke by the way, take it easy and don’t burn down this precious little blog.