From Salaam to Lal Salaam!!!
Owais Ahmad Shah
The word for salaam is foreign and the sentiment is not native to us.In India we have no such problem and we can see that from the endless saluting of policemen they need to do in our parts.Even those on traffic duty have to flash it each time when the senior passes by.
In India and Pakistan,the salute is made for both police and army with the palm facing out.This is different from the way Americans salute,with their palm facing down and showing only the blade of hand.The American one is easy to copy and requires less practice but the Indian one is a bit smarter and requires extra smartness.
It is always too odd of corpulent,sloppy politicians to salute the flag or return their salute at military or police functions.Even Americans didn’t return salute to the Marines guarding the helicopters at white House since actor Ronald Raegan did this first.
So,what are salutes for and what they are meant to communicate?It shows telegraph respect and the exposure of hand shows that the salute is unarmed.
What does the Roman salute communicate?
It comes from the painting by 18th century artist Jacques Louis David called the Oath of Horrati.Adapted from story in Livis Histories.It was adopted by the Nazi Party under the Hitler’s rule although it is now reviled across the world.
Hitler also did the job of bending his elbow and showing his palm which was ruthlessly mimicked by the Great Charlie Chaplin.
Another salute that is no longer visible is the Black Power salute.The elbow is moved at around 80 degrees and hand balled into a fist.
The Rashtraya Swamsewak Sangh has Cultish feeling for its salute called Zogist salute.The arm is bent at the elbow which slightly goes over the chest.Where did they get it from.Veer Savarkar has made warm references of Guissepi Mazzini and Guissepi Garibaldi and Hindutva is deeply influenced by Italians.
The above mentioned salutes bring us to another salute called the Lal salaam.This was with the elevation of Sitaram Yechury to secretary Communist Party India(Marxist).Yechury held his arm above his head and the fist turned out.This gesture communicates defiance and solidarity.