The tricolour was first adopted by the Indian Constitution Assembly in a meeting on 22 July, 1947. So on the occasion of the Indian national flag's Adoption Day, we bring you 10 things about the flag that you would be proud to know
Never before has the Indian flag been as fashionable as it stands today. It waves grandly from the Central Park in New Delhi's Connaught Place, dances with the winds above clustered terraces as Independence season approaches, bounces in the fists of fans at airports as our gold-winning athletes return, and is a bestseller on top e-commerce websites. And yet, we don't know all about it. MyNation brings you 10 facts about the national flag that you ought to know on the occasion of its adoption day
1. The largest Indian flag was unfurled in May this year at Chennai's NTR Stadium, coinciding with the anniversary of India's First War of Independence of 1857. The flag measured 183 feet in length and 122 feet in breadth. The national flag hoisted at Central Park is also one of the largest in India. It is 90 feet in length, 60 feet in width and is hoisted on a flagpole of 207 feet.
2. India also holds the world record for the largest human flag which was formed by 50,000 volunteers in Chennai in December 2014.
3. The first national flag in India is said to have been hoisted on 7 August, 1906, in the Parsee Bagan Square (Green Park) in Calcutta (the present-day Kolkata). The flag was composed of three horizontal strips of red, yellow and green.
4. Mahatma Gandhi first proposed an official flag for the country to the Indian National Congress in 1921. The flag is said to have been designed by Pingali Venkayya, but some reports say that our national flag was designed by a Hyderabadi Muslim woman, Suraiya Tayyabji, and later improvised upon.
5. On 22 August, 1907, Madam Bhikaji Cama became the first person to hoist Indian flag on foreign soil in Stuttgart, in Germany.
6. By law, the flag is to be made of khadi or silk. The manufacturing process and specifications for the flag are laid out by the Bureau of Indian Standards. The right to manufacture the flag is held by the Khadi Development and Village Industries Commission (KDVIC), which allocates it to regional groups. However, polyester-nylon versions are now available across e-commerce portals, and paper flags are sold all over the streets.
7. Former president Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan clarified the adopted flag and described its significance as follows: "Bhagwa or the saffron denotes renunciation or disinterestedness. Our leaders must be indifferent to material gains and dedicate themselves to their work. The white in the centre is light, the path of truth to guide our conduct. The green shows our relation to (the) soil, our relation to the plant life here, on which all other life depends. The Ashoka Chakra in the centre of the white is the wheel of the law of dharma. Truth or satya, dharma or virtue ought to be the controlling principle of those who work under this flag. Again, the wheel denotes motion. There is death in stagnation. There is life in movement. India should no more resist change, it must move and go forward."
8. The tricolour also contains traces of hemp. The specifications laid down by the Indian Standards Institute (now the BIS) cover all the essential requirements of the manufacture of the Indian flag, including sizes, dye colour, chromatic values, brightness, thread count and hemp cordage.
9. Official regulation states that the flag must never touch the ground or water, or be used as a drapery in any form. The flag may not be intentionally placed upside down, dipped in anything, or hold any objects other than flower petals before unfurling. No sort of lettering may be inscribed on the flag. When out in the open, the flag should always be flown between sunrise and sunset, irrespective of the weather conditions.
Prior to 2009, the flag could be flown on a public building at night under special circumstances; currently, Indian citizens can fly the flag even at night, subject to the restriction that the flag should be hoisted on a tall flagpole and be well-illuminated.
10. The original flag code of India did not allow private citizens to fly the national flag except on national days such as Independence Day or Republic Day. In 2001, Naveen Jindal, an industrialist used to the more egalitarian use of the flag in the United States where he studied, flew the Indian flag on his office building. The flag was confiscated and he was warned of prosecution.
Jindal filed a public interest litigation petition in the Delhi High Court; he sought to strike down the restriction on the use of the flag by private citizens, arguing that hoisting the national flag with due decorum and honour was his right as a citizen, and a way of expressing his love for the country. Eventually he won the seven-year long court battle that enabled all Indians to display the national flag with honour and pride in private premises.
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Last Updated 22, Jul 2018, 7:14 PM