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In these times of globalization, is National Identity and Patriotism important?

Globalisation is a modern concept that emerged in the last decade of 20TH century. It facilitated interconnectedness between different nations for the sake of capital investment, technology transfer, marketing of finished products and a host of other things. With the advent of cellular phones, social media and ultra-fast internet this interconnectedness trickled down to the level of personal relations between different nationalities. But still national identity and patriotism run thick in our veins as is evident from soaring popularity of ongoing FIFA world cup. Despite of strained finances, elevated ticket prices and pressing inflation due to clashes in the middle-east regions, high fan turnout in support of home countries is being observed. Although we cannot justify that as an act of nationalism, yet it motivates the players and proves that national identity and patriotism are alive and growing in these times of globalisation.

Without a feeling of patriotism, we will not dedicate ourselves for our country which will kill our competitive spirit and survival instinct. Darwin said "survival of the fittest". Today it is not about muscle power but about intellect, dedication, hard work and motivation. One of the main problems in India is inability to retain our best brains. Though they are groomed in our country using public money and best resources, they move to foreign nations in search of greener pastures. This brain drain is somewhat due to lack of patriotism.

Another trend that is being seen is that billionaires accepting citizenship of countries that charge less taxes. Though they are increasing their family coffers, they are betraying their country. When they shift business focus to some other country, they take jobs, technology and investment from their home country. This adversely affects employment and financial health of the country concerned. This is one of the adverse effects of globalisation.

Diversity is one of the essential components of our existence. If all the nations come under one umbrella, it will be difficult to understand and satisfy all. There will be a feeling of betrayal and unequal treatment. There are problems within nations that are causing clashes between sects, religions and regions. It is distressing and frightening just to imagine the magnitude of these clashes if the entire seven million people of the world are under one government. So, national identity and patriotism which are the progenies of nation need to exist.

Defence is not a high paying job. Despite of the risks involved people go to the borders to serve their country due to love for country. They sacrifice their lives by virtue of their patriotism and bravery. When the British established their supremacy over a major portion of the world, it was not only due to supreme armaments and organised army but also due to lack of dedication, patriotism, fighting spirit among our regional leaders. They were reluctant to shed their comfortable and luxurious life in favour of battle and self-respect. Some of the rulers betrayed their counterparts and helped the British. This resulted in years of torture, inequality and fierce freedom struggle. The only way to avoid such a predicament is to guard our national identity.

Social media as the agency of globalisation has virtually encompassed all walks of our life. It has penetrated into national and international security establishments and threatened their stability. It has negative consequences on economic spheres and geo-political military security environment. The terrorist organisations use it as a method of spreading their clandestine propaganda, hacking into government agencies and harming nations. They usually include gullible, unpatriotic and greedy individuals in their mission. So, patriotism is important in the face of globalisation to protect our country's integrity.

Globalisation is changing our way of living like feeding habits, dressing style, social conduct etc. Our food, culture and dresses have evolved over centuries keeping in mind our home grown culture, climate and body's needs. Though we need to modify ourselves according to shifting times and job requirements, we also need to keep in touch with our roots as it is an important recipe for success. We can retain our individuality only by virtue of national identity and patriotism. This makes national identity and patriotism important in these times of globalisation.

-Sai Jijnasa Roy

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