The Banyan Tree (Ficus benghalensis) is the National Tree of India. Belonging to the fig family, the branches of the Banyan spread over a large area take roots and keep on living and regenerating for thousands of years. Over the years, it consistently gains more trunks and branches that add to its longevity. According to Indian Mythology, it is considered immortal. Many of the Indian villages are centred around large shady Banyan trees that provide a good place for public meetings and meetings of the village council. The tree has the widest reaching roots of all the trees and can easily extend to several acres.
The size of the Banyan tree, its alleged immortality and its religious significance in India made it an obvious choice to be chosen as the National Tree of India. It served to provide a leafy shelter to a number of weary Indians who would use it to give themselves some rest in its shade from the blazing hot summer sun. Indians have long honoured this tree and many folklores and mythological legends are attached to it. Some of the Hindu rituals make it even more prominent. Besides the humans, it provides shelter to a number of other creatures. It is also known to need little maintenance and is virtually a boon to Indians.
We as Indians must respect our National Symbols. Jai Hind !!