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Mahatma Gandhi once said, “We have to produce a society of those people who profess different religions, but they live like brothers.”

In fact, this statement of Mahatma Gandhi has the essence of national integration in India, where people of different religions live together.

The British rulers sowed the seeds of hatred among the people of different religions in India, because they believed in the policy of “Divide and Rule”.

The British government in India encouraged Muslim League to demand Pakistan on the basis of separate religion and sepa­rate nation.

But the Constitution of free India lies down that India is a secular state which means that people of different religions have full freedom of worship in this country and they live like brothers.

National Integration means that we should have a true spirit of pa­triotism in our hearts. We should think that we are Indians first and members of a particular religion afterwards. We should consider our­selves part and parcel of our country.

We should always remember the following words of Swami Ram Tirath: “The land of India is my own body, the Ocean is my feet and the Himalayas are my head. From my hair flows the Ganga and from my head comes the Brahmaputra. The Vindhyachal is girt round my loins.”

We stand in the need of true patriotism. If all of us become true patriots, there will be no communal riots, in this holy land of India. But alas, these riots have been raising their ugly head from time to time in free India.

We were justified when we blamed the British rulers in India for encouraging communal riots in this country, but there is no justifica­tion for communal riots even after getting our independence.

The recent communal riots in Assam, Gujarat, U P, Delhi and Punjab are a blot on the fair name of our holy country. It is a matter of shame and sorrow that even the Hindus and Sikhs of Punjab, who till now had been living like brothers, have fallen a prey to communal riots after the tragic killing of Smt. Indira Gandhi.

The need of the hour is that all Punjab should consider one another as brothers and live peace­fully as such.

India is a vast country, where many languages are spoken by people. This causes a great hindrance in the way of national integration.

The people of a country remain united if there is a single language spoken by all its people. Hindi can become such a national language but people of the South do not own it as their national language.

Anyhow, efforts should be made by the Government of India that all people in the country may own Hindi as their national language even if they use English as link language.

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