Watch The Quint’s Bol Rap Ft. Chacha Nehru

Here’s to celebrating the multiplicity of India’s languages!

2 min read

(This piece was first published on 8 August 2017 and has been republished in the light of actor Ajay Devgn's remark hailing Hindi as the 'national language.')

We're a country that speaks in over 1,600 tongues. So we at The Quint have wrapped up a few of 'em into a rap!

And as our ‘Tryst With Destiny’ continues, chacha Nehru, aka maker of modern India, aka fashionista of the 50s, aka Jawaharlal Nehru, raps along.

His message is not just of a destiny we must fulfil, but of a diversity we need to recognise and celebrate.

So here's to the nation, in a dozen mother tongues! Sing along, and BOL boldly in your mother tongue. Gaalis to qawalis, poems to memes, what's not to celebrate!


Nehru's voice (Long years ago, we made a Tryst with destiny...
Tryst...with destiny. Tryst, Tryst...with destiny.)

Words have power they heal and flower
into desi memes and the need of the hour
(When the world sleeps...India will awake)
to sixteen hundred tongues seeking a voice, a new fate

From the language of the ancients to internet slang - YOLO
bolo sanskari or say sorry not sorry -
Get this
(soul of a nation to break into rhyme –  it’s time...)
(soul of a soul of a  soul of a nation)
Kem che majhe ma dilli ka rajma
maan amma ammie it don't matter what you call your mummy

India's the baap of funky linquistics -
Ayyo! Yo! Ende Ammo! Rei! Kaun hai be!
Bidda! Magane! Thammu! (All of these are just expressions of surprise in different languages)

funkaar bol hai
bhaasha behad cool hai (HINDI)

mozhi enadu tamil ada
oli oLiyai oorum thaenada (TAMIL) (Tamil is my language, it is honey that flows as sound and light)

(India discovers herself again
India discovers herself again...)
Again and again, we discover ourselves
(Full of freedom and power)
That's freedom to dissent
in every accent –

We've got promises to keep - and
sweet 'gaalis' to bleep
from the gal da pind to
desi gone with the wind

Vaividhyam annade
naa bhaashana jwaalai merise raa (TELUGU)
(Diversity is the fire that burns bright in my language)

Amar shonar bangla chirodin
amar prane bajay bashe (BANGLA)
(My 'golden' Bangla is my life forever)

Nothing's lost in translation
cuz' we're many but we're still one nation
every song every rhyme every word every time
keeps time with the beat of a billion hearts
Here we go here we are here we at here we start!

Pyar gaai hing goru sadhinota swatantra
chai cha sa the chaya ektu sanu che!

Boli, Bhasha, Dil Dhadkan mein
Anaik aur ek hai (KASHMIRI)
(Words and languages in my heart beat are many, and yet one)

Nyangalode hridayathilum
madhuram oorum oro vaakilum (MALAYALAM)
(My 'golden' Bangla is my life forever)

Ekaakar aapna hriday maa anedarek sathya che. (GUJARATI)
(The one truth is the same in my heart and in those of the many).

(At the stroke of the midnight hour
when the world sleeps
India will awake
to life and freedom)


Lyrics, Music & Rap: Vikram Venkateswaran
Producers: Tridip Mandal, Vikram Venkateswaran & Divya Talwar
Editor: Kunal Mehra
Camerapersons: Athar Rather & Sanjoy Deb
Special Thanks: Aditya Vij
Footage Courtesy: Films Division

Here’s to celebrating the multiplicity of India’s languages!

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

Read Latest News and Breaking News at The Quint, browse for more from campaigns and bol

Topics:  India   Jawaharlal Nehru   Bengali 

Speaking truth to power requires allies like you.
Become a Member
3 months
12 months
12 months
Check Member Benefits
Read More