India is a vast country that is not just a land consisting of soil, mountains, waterfalls, rivers, coast, etc. India is the mother of people of Indian descent. Indians are her children; we have grown up in the lap of Bharat Mata, and we routinely say Bharat Mata ki jai. Hence, from Bharat, we are connected like a son to his mother.
The name of Bharat has been changing from time to time. Sometimes, it has been Aryavarta, sometimes Bharat, sometimes Hindustan, and sometimes India. Let us explore the history behind its name.
First of all, if we know the history of Bharat, according to Brahma Samvat, 1972949125 is going on, that is, the history of Bharat which is more than 197 crore years old. To make it easier, to calculate such a long time, Indian scholars introduced Vikrami Samvat in place of Brahma Samvat; currently, Vikrami Samvat 2080 is going on. Bhartiya calendar is now based on this Vikrami Samvat
According to Sanatan Shastras, there are 7 islands and 7 seas on earth. The ‘island’ in which Bharat is situated is called Jambudweep. The first king of Jambudweep whose name is found in the scriptures is Agnindra. There were 9 sections in Jambudweep of which one section was named Ajnabha Khand (Khand means Part) which was the largest among the 9 sections. The king of Ajnabha was Nabhi who was married to Indra’s daughter Jayanti. Ajnabha had a hundred children in the name of the eldest son Rishabhdev. This is the same Rishabhdev whom Jains also call Adidev, who is the first Jain Tirthankar. The name of the eldest son of Rishabhdev was Bharat, who is also called Gyan Yogi Bharat and Jad Bharat. After the name of this Bharat, the Ajnabh region was named Bharatvarsha.
Bharat is a huge country that extends up to Europe. There have been a total of 3 famous Bharatas on this earth. The second was Bharat, brother of Shri Ram who was a symbol of religion. The third Bharat was the valiant son of Dushyant and Shakuntala, who used to play with lions in his childhood. The descendants of this Bharat were the Kauravas and Pandavas, between whom the terrible Mahabharata war took place.
The name of this nation was also Aryavart. The name Aryavart was given because the people living here are Arya. Arya means ‘The Best’. Here great sages, accomplished mahatmas, wise men, scientists, educationists, philosophers, and powerful brave men were born. This is the same miraculous land where God was incarnated— 7 people of this land are immortal whose names are Ashwasthama, King Bali, Maharishi Vyas, Kripacharya, Vibhishan, Parashuram and Hanuman ji.
Now let us move on to the third name which is Hindustan. Regarding this name, historians say that Turks and Iranians called Sindhu Ghati (Indus Valley) as Hindu Valley which was the southern part of the Hindukush hills. Iranians and Turks used to pronounce Sa as Ha. But if we look at the word or name Hindu, the word Hindavah appears in Shukla Yajurveda which means Hindu. Now the third reason is that the part between the Himalayas and Indu Sarovar (Hind Mahasagar / Indian Ocean) was called Hindustan. H + Indu Hi from Himalay and Indu from Indu Sarovar. And as such it was called Hindustan. People from Hindustan were or are called Hindustani as is the case in Suriname. Yes, Indians from or in Suriname are called Hindustanis not Indians.
The main reason why Bharat got its name from India is that the British named Sindhu Ghati as Indus Valley because they could not pronounce Sindhu. The second reason was that wherever the British ruled, they changed the culture, civilization, and name of that place. Changed or destroyed Britain gave a new name to this country India.
The transformation of India to Bharat will break a big chain of colonization and slavery, and we will once again become a mighty great Indian. Now we are not Indians but Bhartiya, children of glorious Bharat Mata. We are Bharatiyans.
From Pawan K Upadhyay