Every year on 24 September, National Service Scheme Day is observed and celebrated across the country. The Ministry of Youth Affairs and Sports conducts and manages the National Service Scheme (NSS), which is a public service program.
In the year 1969, the National Service Scheme was introduced on the occasion of the birth centenary of Mahatma Gandhi. During that time, the scheme was launched in 37 universities in India, including 40,000 students to be part of it.
Motto of NSS
The National Service Scheme has a motto that stands for 'Not Me but You'. This motto emphasises the need for selfless service and also represents the spirit of democratic living. Through NSS, the youth learn to appreciate other people's points of view and to be thoughtful or kind to other beings. The main objective of NSS is perfectly illustrated in the motto as it highlights the concept that everyone's happiness or well-being is highly reliant on the welfare of society.
After India achieved independence, the University Grants Commission (UGC), then headed by S Radhakrishnan, had suggested the introduction of voluntary national service in academic institutions. Following which, the government in 1952 stressed on the requirement of labour and social service by students in India for a year.
Later on in the year 1958, Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru decided to go ahead with the idea of social service as a requirement for graduate students. He considered this idea by sending a letter regarding the same to all chief ministers. Moreover, Nehru further instructed the Ministry of Education to form a competent scheme for to ensure the same.
The world-famous Konark Sun Temple's massive Rath Wheel has been an inspiration for the NSS's insignia or emblem. As per the image, the wheel on the temple represents life's journey while the eight bars on the wheel focuses on the 24 hours of the day.
Also, the colour red suggests that volunteers are full of youthful blood which is active, enthusiastic, vibrant and upbeat. Meanwhile, the navy-blue colour represents the universe of which NSS is a small part.