Last week saw the Armed Forces Hindu Network hold a series of Raksha Bandhan events up and down the country. For the Armed Forces, the festival holds a special significance as it emphasises the core values of courage, commitment, discipline, respect, integrity and loyalty as well as Dharma that is the foundation of them all. As we commemorate the centenary of the First World War and the 75th anniversary of Second World War in which combined 2 million Hindus served, the bond between the British Hindu community and the Armed Forces is especially fitting.
Travelling through Bradford, Edinburgh, Birmingham and finally London where the event took place in the prestigious Ministry of Defence building; members of the Armed Forces were welcomed by the local communities to give recognition of the hard work carried out by them. The celebrations saw British Hindu Youth tying rakhis on wrists of personnel from their local Armed Forces units representing bonds of friendship, brotherhood and mutual protection and support between the British Hindu Community and the Armed Forces.
Traditionally, the sister-brother relationship highlighted by the rakhi goes far beyond the protection of the sister given by her brother. It implies the basic element of a cordial life where all members of society look upon themselves as brothers and sisters. The Armed forces protect us and carry out their duty without asking for anything in return. Their sense of patriotism, discipline and courage is uplifting and it’s time that we, as the Hindu youth, learn from them and use our skills to serve, advance and protect the wider Samaj.
Vasudeva Kutumbakum – The whole world is one family.
We are NHSF. Happy Raksha Bandhan to you all.