In a rousing display of patriotism and unity, the voices of thousands of Aurangabadkars, singing Jana Gana Mana, have created history. With a tally of 15,243, they took India into the Guinness Book of World Records for ‘the most people singing a National Anthem simultaneously’, erasing the previous record held by Pakistan for 5,800 individuals.
Andrea Banfi, Head of Adjudicators, Guinness World Records Ltd, who had flown in from London, handed over the certificate to Rajya Sabha MP and Chairman of Lokmat Media Ltd, Vijay Babu Darda.
Other Guinness World Records Ltd officials present on the occasion were Lucia Sinigagliesi, Adjudications Manager, and Nikhil Shukla, Adjudicator – India.
Commenting on the achievement, Rishi Darda, Editorial Director, Lokmat Media Ltd, said, “This is our gift, as a responsible media house deeply connected with Aurangabad, to not just Aurangabadkars, but every Indian. We are delighted that Aurangabadkars responded so splendidly to our world record attempt initiative to commemorate the completion of 100 years of Jana Gana Mana since it was first sung.”
It will be recalled that Jana Gana Mana was first sung at the Calcutta Session of the Indian National Congress on December 27, 1911. It was declared the Indian National Anthem by the Constituent Assembly on January 24, 1950.
While Radio Mirchi was the radio partner, MCN Hathway, IBN7, IBN Lokmat and CNN IBN were the TV partners, and Abhishek Advertisers was the outdoor media partner. The sponsors were WS Developers, while the Phadnis Group was the co-sponsor.
Leading the swelling crowd in the chorus on stage were Shankar Mahadevan, Mahatma Gandhi’s grandson Tushar Gandhi, Prashant Damle, Roopkumar and Sonali Rathod, Vaishali Samant, Swapnil Bandodkar, Pramod Sarkate, Mrs Salaskar (widow of 26/11 martyr Vijay Salaskar) and others, who sang with Aurangabadkars to create the world record.