Jana Gana Mana

Jana Gana Mana
জন গণ মন
English: Jana Gana Mana (for Piano)
Jôno Gôno Mono
Sheet music for Jana Gana Mana.

National anthem of

Lyrics Rabindranath Tagore, 1911
Music Rabindranath Tagore, 1919
Adopted January 24, 1950
Music sample
Jana Gana Mana (Instrumental)

Jana Gana Mana (Bengali: জন গণ মন, Jôno Gôno Mono) is the national anthem of India. Written in highly Sanskritized (Tatsama) Bengali, it is the first of five stanzas of a Brahmo hymn composed and scored by Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore. It was first sung at the Calcutta Session of the Indian National Congress on 27 December 1911. Jana Gana Mana was officially adopted by the Constituent Assembly as the Indian national anthem on January 24, 1950.[1][2]

A formal rendition of the national anthem takes fifty-two seconds. A shortened version consisting of the first and last lines (and taking about 20 seconds to play) is also staged occasionally.[3] Tagore wrote down the English translation[4] of the song and along with Margaret Cousins (an expert in European music and wife of Irish poet James Cousins), set down the notation which is followed till this day.[5] It is of interest that another poem by Tagore (Amar Shonar Bangla) is the national anthem of Bangladesh.[6]



The text, though Bengali, is highly sanskritized (written in a literary register called Sadhu bhasa). As quasi-Sanskrit text, it is acceptable in many modern Indic languages, but the pronunciation varies considerably across India. This is primarily because most Indic languages are abugidas in that certain unmarked consonants are assumed to have an inherent vowel, but conventions for this differ among the languages of India. The transcription below reflects the Bengali pronunciation, in both the Bengali script and romanization.

Bengali script Bengali phonemic transcription NLK transliteration

জনগণমন-অধিনায়ক জয় হে.
পঞ্জাব সিন্ধু গুজরাট মরাঠা
দ্রাবিড় উৎ‍‌কল বঙ্গ
বিন্ধ্য হিমাচল যমুনা গঙ্গা
উচ্ছল জলধি তরঙ্গ
তব শুভ নামে জাগে
তব শুভ আশিস মাগে
গাহে তব জয়গাথা
জনগণমঙ্গলদায়ক জয় হে
জয় হে, জয় হে, জয় হে,
জয় জয় জয়, জয় হে॥

Jônogônomono-odhinaeoko jôeô he
Pônjabo Shindhu Gujoraṭo Môraṭha
Drabiṛo Utkôlo Bônggo
Bindho Himachôlo Jomuna Gôngga
Uchchhôlo jôlodhi toronggo
Tôbo shubho name jage
Tôbo shubho ashish mage
Gahe tôbo jôeogatha
Jônogônomonggolodaeoko jôeô he
Jôeo he, jôeo he, jôeo he,
jôeo jôeo jôeo, jôeo he

Jana gaṇa mana adhināyaka jaya he
Bhārata bhāgya vidhātā
Pañjāba Sindhu Gujarāṭa Marāṭhā
Drāviḍa Utkala Vaṅga
Vindhya Himāchala Yamunā Gaṅgā
Ucchala jaladhi taraṅga
Tav śubha nāme jāge
Tav śubha āśiṣa māge
Gāhe taba jaya gāthā
Jana gaṇa maṅgala dāyaka jaya he
Bhārata bhāgya vidhāta
Jaya he, jaya he, jaya he
Jaya jaya jaya, jaya he!

Translation into English

The following translation, attributed to Tagore, is provided by the Government of India's national portal:[3]

Thou art the ruler of the minds of all people,
Dispenser of India's destiny.
Thy name rouses the hearts of Punjab, Sindh,
Gujarat and Maratha,
Of the Dravida and Orissa and Bengal;
It echoes in the hills of the Vindhyas and Himalayas,
mingles in the music of Jamuna and Ganges and is
chanted by the waves of the Indian Sea.
They pray for thy blessings and sing thy praise.
The saving of all people waits in thy hand,
Thou dispenser of India's destiny.
 victory forever.

This English translation by Tagore is also famous as Wikisource link to The Morning Song of India. Wikisource.  and continues further to four more stanzas.

Musical Composition and English Translation

Courtyard in Madanapalle where Jana Gana Mana was first sung.

Rabindranath Tagore translated Jana Gana Mana from Bengali to English and also set it to music in Madanapalle[5], a town located in the Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh state, India. Though the Bengali song had been written in 1911, it was largely unknown except to the readers of the Brahmo Samaj journal, Tatva Bodha Prakasika, of which Tagore was the editor.

During 1919, Tagore accepted an invitation from friend and controversial Irish poet James H. Cousins to spend a few days at the Besant Theosophical College, of which Cousins was the principal. On the evening of February 28,1919 he joined a gathering of students and upon Cousins' request, sang the Jana Gana Mana in Bengali. The college authorities, greatly impressed by the lofty ideals of the song and the praise to God, selected it as their prayer song. In the days that followed, enchanted by the dreamy hills of Madanapalle, Tagore wrote down the English translation of the song and along with Cousins' wife, Margaret (an expert in Western music), set down the notation which is followed till this day. The song was carried beyond the borders of India by the college students and became The Morning Song of India[4] and subsequently the national anthem.

Today, in the library of Besant Theosophical College in Madanapalle, the framed original English translation of Jana gana Mana, titled as The Morning Song of India in Tagore's handwriting is displayed.[7]

Code of conduct

The National Anthem of India is played or sung on various occasions. Instructions have been issued from time to time about the correct versions of the Anthem, the occasions on which these are to be played or sung, and about the need for paying respect to the anthem by observance of proper decorum on such occasions. The substance of these instructions has been embodied in the information sheet issued by the government of India for general information and guidance.[3]


The poem was composed in December 1911, precisely at the time of the Coronation Durbar of George V, and is considered by some to be in praise of King George V and not God. Tagore however translated Jana Gana Mana in English as the Morning Song of India[4], addressing God and the motherland in it. For a more detailed discussion on the controversy, see Jana Gana Mana (the complete song).

In July 1985 in the state of Kerala, some of the Jehovah's Witnesses' children were expelled from school under the instructions of Deputy Inspector of Schools for having refused to sing the national anthem, Jana Gana Mana. A parent, V. J. Emmanuel, appealed to the Supreme Court of India for legal remedy. On August 11, 1986, the Supreme Court overruled the Kerala High Court, and directed the respondent authorities to re-admit the children into the school. The decision went on to add: "Our tradition teaches tolerance, our philosophy preaches tolerance, our Constitution practices tolerance, let us not dilute it".[8]

A controversy swirls around the claim by Captain Ram Singh Thakur, an associate of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, that he, and not Rabindranath Tagore, wrote the score for the national anthem on Netaji's behest.[9][10][11] An advertisement released in Calcutta newspapers by the Gorkha Hill Council to mark the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose centenary on January 23, 1997 plunged him into controversy.[12] The advertisement hailed him as the Gorkha who set the national anthem to music, following sharp reactions that such a claim was never made before. Capt. Ram Singh Thakur intended to write a letter to President Shankar Dayal Sharma[12] claiming that his contribution in composing the score of the national anthem is being refuted just because he is a Gorkha. Netaji's nephew, Dr Sisir Bose, said that Captain Ram Singh Thakur had composed the band-score of a Hindi song, Subh Sukh Chain similar to the national anthem, but not identical. Tagore is widely believed to have himself set the lyrics of Jana Gana Mana to music as early as 1919[5], like he had done to Amar Shonar Bangla, now the National Anthem of Bangladesh[13], Ekla Cholo Re, another favorite song of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, and his numerous other musical compositions, famous as Rabindra Sangeet. The credit to Tagore for the music of Jana Gana Mana is also upheld by the Government of India.[3].

See also


  1. ^ Bhatt, P.C, ed (1999). Constituent Assembly Debates. XII. Lok Sabha Secret. 
  2. ^ Volume XII. Tuesday, the 24th January 1950. Online Transcript, Constituent Assembly Debates
  3. ^ a b c d National Anthem - Know India. Nation Portal of Government of India.
  4. ^ a b c "The Morning Song of India". K. Ramanraj. http://ramanraj.blogspot.com/2007/08/morning-song-by-rabindranath-tagore.html. Retrieved 2007-08-15. 
  5. ^ a b c Vani Doraisamy (March 19, 2006). "India beats: A Song for the Nation". Chennai, India: The Hindu. http://www.hindu.com/mag/2006/03/19/stories/2006031900120400.htm. Retrieved 2007-07-25. 
  6. ^ "India: Jana Gana Mana". NationalAnthems.me. http://nationalanthems.me/india-jana-gana-mana. Retrieved 2011-08-09. 
  7. ^ "English Translation of Janaganamana". Manjula Bose. http://satyashodh.com/janaganaman/. Retrieved 2011-08-15. 
  8. ^ "Bijoe Emmanuel & Ors V. State of Kerala & Ors [1986 INSC 167"]. World Legal Information Institute. August 11, 1986. http://www.worldlii.org/in/cases/INSC/1986/167.html. 
  9. ^ Ganpuley's Memoirs.1983. Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan.p204
  10. ^ "Controversy over Jana Gana Mana takes a new turn". Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/news/apr/26anthem.htm. Retrieved 2008-06-08. 
  11. ^ Rajendra Rajan (May 4, 2002). "A tribute to the legendary composer of National Anthem". The Tribune. http://www.tribuneindia.com/2002/20020504/windows/main2.htm. 
  12. ^ a b "Who composed the score for Jana Gana Mana? Gurudev or the Gorkha?". Rediff. http://www.rediff.com/news/feb/22anthem.htm. Retrieved 2008-06-08. 
  13. ^ Tagore- Composer of National Anthem of India and Bangladesh


  • Dutta, K; Robinson, A (1995), Rabindranath Tagore, St. Martin's Press, ISBN 0-312-14030-4 .

External links

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