A national anthem, often sung by the state, is a declaration of the country’s independence and patriotism.
The song is also a way of signalling the nation’s pride in the achievements of the past, says the songwriter, Jyoti Narayan, who is also the president of the songwriting group Bhagat Singh Singh Sabha.
The national anthem is the national anthem of India and is sung by many Indian states in formal ceremonies and by a few groups of students in schools.
Its composition, the notes and melody are dictated by the states.
It is not a state secret, nor is it restricted to one state, as some commentators have suggested.
It is a subject of controversy in India, where the country is divided along caste lines and has been at loggerheads with its neighbours.
While many Indians, especially the educated classes, sing the national song, many of its lyrics are disparaging of minorities.
Some sing it in the name of a dead hero, while others sing it to mock the religion of a religion they hate.
Many songs have been banned in India since the 1960s, and a number have been deleted from the official repertoire.