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The Story Behind the Indian National Flag

History of Indian National Flag

India’s struggle for freedom is widely known, but the evolution of Indian National Flag is lesser known. The Indian flag is more than its vibrant colours and design- it has a story of commitment and resilience. This article will help you get familiar with evolution and the lesser-known facts about the Indian national flag. So, let us first start by acquainting ourselves with the Indian national flag.

Indian National Flag

Indian National Flag (Tricolour) contains three colours: saffron, green and white. The saffron colour is at the top, green at the bottom and white in the middle. The length-to-width ratio of the national flag is 2:3. And the middle portion/strip contains a navy blue wheel called chakra.

What do the colours of the Tricolour represent?

  • The topmost colour in the national flag, saffron, represents courage and strength.
  • The middle colour, white, signifies peace and truth.
  • The bottom colour, green, indicates growth, auspiciousness and fertility.

The wheel or chakra in the middle of the Indian flag represents truth, virtue and dharma. It is taken from the lion capital of Ashoka, erected at a pillar in Sarnath near Varanasi.

Evolution of Indian National Flag

History of Indian National Flag is closely tied to the struggle for India's independence. Here are some significant events related to the Indian National Flag:

  • It is said that the first Indian National Flag was hoisted in Green Park (Parsee Began Square) in Calcutta on August 7th 1906. It contained three horizontal strips of blue, yellow, and red. Vande Mataram was written in the middle strip, and the red strip carried a sun and crescent moon. The unfurling of this flag also has significant political and historical importance. The British government wanted to divide Bengal into two parts along religious lines. The flag was hoisted to oppose the decisive policy of the British government.
  • Madam Cama hoisted the second Indian National Flag in Paris on August 22, 1907. It is believed that prominent Indian freedom fighters Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, Shyamjii Krishna Verma, and Madam Cama collectively designed it. This was the first time the Indian flag unfurled in a foreign land. This day holds great significance. The flag was similar to the first flag, but the colour was modified- Green at the top, golden saffron at the middle and red at the bottom.
  • The third flag was unfurled by Lokmanya Tilak and Dr Annie Besant during the home rule movement. It contained seven strips in the "Saptarishi" configuration and four green and give red strips. In 1921, Mahatma Gandhi asked Pingali Venkayya to design the national flag with a chakra.
  • During the Indian national congress committees, Pingali presented the flag with two colours- Red and green. However, Mahatma Gandhi suggested adding a white colour strip to the flag. In 1931, the flag was slightly modified; the Red colour was replaced by saffron, and a white strip was added to the middle of the flag with a spinning wheel.
  • The existing national flag was mostly similar to the flag in 1931, with one exception: the spinning wheel was replaced with the Ashoka Chakra. Indian national flag was adopted on July 22, 1974, by the Constituent Assembly of India.

Less-known facts about the Indian national flag

  • The only authorised centre for the production of the Indian National Flag, Karnataka Khadi Gramodyoga Samyukta Sangha, is located at Bengeri in Hubballi. It was founded on November 1st, 1957, but its manufacturing unit started in 2004. In 2006, the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) certified KKGSS, and it  received the Award of Excellence in the same year.
  • Indian national flag must be made from Khadi, a fabric that Mahatma Gandhi promoted during the freedom struggle; The flag must also be hand woven and hand spun.
  • Indian national flag was first hoisted by Sherpa Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary on Mount Everest on May 29th, 1953, along with the Nepalese, Northern Ireland and United Kingdom national flags.
  • In 2018, India set a world record in forming the largest human flag. Over 50,000 people gathered in Chennai to form the national flag.
  • The tallest Indian national flag is in the town of Faridabad. It is 250 feet in height and can be seen from a considerable distance.
  • The Indian government introduced the flag code of India in 2002, which outlines protocols for handling the national flag.
  • During important national holidays like independence day and republic day, the national flag should be flown on all government buildings. Educational institutions such as colleges and schools are also encouraged to hoist the national flag on national holidays.

The bottom line

Our national flag stands as a symbol of sacrifice, unity and resilience. The captivating history of the Indian national flag and less known facts about our flag reminds us that its story is our story and encourages us to keep working to attain a brighter future. Being the best CBSE school in Baddi, we believe that the students should aware about the inspiring history of our Nation and National Flag.