Video: 6-year-old UAE expat makes history, sings patriotic song in 10 Indian languages

Nandini Sircar/Abu Dhabi
Filed on May 31, 2021


India Book of Records 2021 recognises boy’s incredible feat of singing 'mile sur mera tumhara' in several tongues

Aryan Parag is only six years old, but even at such a tender age, he has struck a big chord, as his remarkable feat of singing in as many as 10 Indian languages has got him an entry into the India Book of Records 2021.

Aryan, an Abu Dhabi resident, has achieved the feat by singing an Indian patriotic song in Indian languages such as Hindi, Punjabi, Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Bengali, Gujarati, Malayalam, Marathi, and Koshur or Kashmiri.

Aryan, a pupil of Shining Star International School in Abu Dhabi. doesn’t suffer from any stage fright and has been prolific from an even younger age. He not only has an inclination towards singing, playing instruments, theatre but all things creative.

“He’s very good at picking up songs, whenever he listens or watches something on TV. He keeps humming the number, then tries to compose new things on his own and is at his piano all day long after school. hours. I’ve noticed he loves playing instruments, especially the keyboard. I think he has developed this streak from my side of the family. I’m a Bharatanatyam dancer and my family is also quite creative. However, he also loves sports, and this interest he appears to have developed due to my husband,” said Avantika, Aryan’s mother.

Aryan’s feat traces its origin to a mundane beginning such as preparing a patriotic song for the school’s ubiquitous Indian Republic Day celebrations on January 26, but soon it translated into a loftier goal.

“The school management encouraged us to enter this competition.  Even at the school’s Republic Day event, he had sung the song 'mile sur mera tumhara' in seven languages. It's a song that was originally sung in multiple languages. We noticed he wanted to go beyond seven languages and was keen on learning it in more tongues,” said Avantika, who belongs to the southernmost Indian state of Kerala.

She spent hours trying to train herself with correct pronunciations of different languages for the song 'mile sur mera tumhara'.

She wrote out the lyrics in Roman alphabets, as that helped Aryan to grasp them easily. The mother and son duo practiced hard and watched high-definition videos, as the last date of sending an entry to the prestigious competition drew closer.

Mile sur mera tumhara was conceived in 1988 by Lok Seva Sanchar Parishad and promoted by Doordarshan, the then sole public broadcaster (pubcaster), and India’s Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.  The song was composed by the late doyen of Hindustani classical vocals, Bhimsen Joshi, and arranged by jazz musician and instrumentalist Louis Banks, while lyrics penned by advertising professional Piyush Pandey. The number promoted national integration and unity in diversity as India was torn by internal rebellion and sectarian strife.

“I used to research the lyrics and then work on Aryan’s vocabulary. He could only read the text in Roman script. I also observed that during Covid-19 restriction Aryan utilised his time by imbibing a lot of creative pursuits on his own, especially instrumental pieces,” she said.

She added, “He can play the national anthems like , . The Covid-19-induced lockdown, though harsh for many, has taught us that we’ve to go back to our roots and nurture children's talents especially because we’ve been able to spend more time with them. We’ve got the opportunity to hone their different skills,” she added.

India Book of Records’ eagerly anticipated email was the clincher in Aryan’s creative pursuits.

“We felt on top of the world for this record. It was a pleasant surprise. It’s not that he was recording songs intentionally to make a record. He was only pursuing his passion. Earlier, when he had memorised the song in seven languages, he had lost the inter-school competition. But this time despite the 10-language challenge, he succeeded because of his due diligence. The feat has boosted his morale and he is aware of the concept that participation is key and transcends winning or losing, which is part of life, and we must take them in our strides,”  Avantika signed off.

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