National flag is something that is a symbol if the great Indian identity and every Indian is proud of it!
‘The National flag is a symbol we attach our emotions to, The tricolor was/is always fluttering bright against the rain, clear blue overhead, and their minds always say the words before ours and their ears hear them.’
‘When I got this picture (with the story) I had a deep gaze at it. There was something in it which the eyes could not see. The man doing the dainty work with all the precision with his brush and eyes popping out to touch the glasses of his spectacles. But more than his hand and eyes it was the mind at work, the accuracy of thought and the pride flowing through the heart. The flag stands for a set of principles and this man had many. Dedication, devotion love and respect for the symbol of the Nation are perhaps just a few like any other Kashmiri’
The tricolor carried anywhere and everywhere signifies that we Indians have arrived and that too in a big way in any arena be it educational, competitive, sports, battlefields, health care, indigenousness in fact everything ever since it became part and parcel of our lives on 22 July, 1947 after a committee headed by Dr. Rajendra Prasad the first President of India unfurled it.
Indian flag teaches several things to an individual and the most important thing that it does is that gives us a lift as the heart swells in pride and tells us, It is very wonderful to see a mountain and make a wish to climb that mountain. It is very wonderful to climb that mountain and put your flag on the very top. But it is most wonderful to create the mountain, climb on the very top and put your flag on it and you understand and know why you created your own mountain? There has to be a reason and that is to always look up with the chin protruding skywards. So create a mountain for yourself, a mountain of glory to always climb and make the aim loftier. When you set a good example to the world, you become a flag waving on the skies of the entire world! That is what I learnt and perhaps the Kashmiri gentleman in the picture with the story as he seems totally engrossed in working on the spokes of the wheel in the middle of the Indian National flag.
If someone asks you as to how many colors does the Indian flag have, the answer by anyone with the roar would be that it has three. Yes the answer is correct but in actuality there are four. Invariably we forget the color blue of the wheel with 24 spokes on which the bespectacled man from Kashmir is working upon with the paint and his brush. He seems to be so possessed about the whole affair that he is simply not bothered about anything else. And why should he be because there can be nothing more engrossing other than being in the close vicinity of the flag and really it’s a matter of honor.
I. National flag, Nation Emblem, National Anthem and National song:
A flag is a necessity for all nations. Millions have died for it. It is no doubt a kind of idolatry which would be a sin to destroy. For, a flag represents an Ideal The unfurling of the tricolor evokes in the Indian breasts sentiments whose strength it is difficult to measure. The colors and the wheel means a world to every Indian. “It will be necessary for us Indians Muslims, Christians Jews, Parsis, and all others to whom India is their home-to recognize a common flag to live and to die for.
The first design of the Indian National flag was made by Sister Nivedita, an Irish disciple of Swami Vivekananda, in 1904. The flag was red and contained a yellow figure of ‘Vajra’ (thunderbolt) and a lotus. It had the words “Vonde Matoram” written in Bengali script. But it was in 1931 that Pingali Venkayya designed the tricolour with a ‘charkha’ (spinning wheel) in the centre, and this was adopted as the official flag of the Indian National Congress. In 1947, this design was adopted as the national flag of India, but the ‘charkha’ in the centre was replaced with the ‘Ashoka Chakra’ (wheel with 24 spokes). And hence, our National Flag came into being.
The National Emblem
Our national emblem has four lions. The watchful lions give us the security that we are safe from all directions!
The National Emblem of India, depicting four Asiatic lions standing back to back, is a replica of Sarnath Lion Capital, which was erected by Emperor Ashoka in the third century BC to mark the spot where Gautama Buddha first taught the Dharma and where the Buddhist Sangha was founded. The entire sculpture was carved out of a single block of polished sandstone. There are a total of 19 such structures still standing in India. The quote ‘Satyameva Jayate’ (Truth alone triumphs) in Devanagari script, that forms an integral part of the Emblem, originated from the Hindu sacred text, Mundaka Upanishad. The emblem was officially adopted on January 26, 1950, the day India emerged as a Republic.
Freedom and bravery there’s a reason we sing of them in our national anthem. We are free because we are brave
The National Anthem: Jana Gana Mana”, the Indian National Anthem, composed originally in Bengali by Rabindranath Tagore, was officially adopted in its Hindi version on January 24, 1950. The song was first sung on December 27, 1911 at the Calcutta session of the Indian National Congress. In 1919, Tagore, while visiting his friend and poet James H. Cousin at Besant Theosophical College, in Madanapalle, Andhra Pradesh, wrote down the English translation of the song. Tagore, along with Cousins’ wife, Margaret, who was an expert in Western music, set down the notation that is followed till this day. At that time, the song was called the Morning Song of India.
‘I like traditions and for that remembering the National song is a must and its words drive us to achieve excellence and excellence is the gradual result of always striving to do better!’
The National Song: This was composed by the great Bankim Das Chaterjeen. Vande Mātoram, also pronounced Bande Mataram Mother I bow to thee, was a poem written in Sanskrit by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee in the 1870s, which he included in his 1882 Bengali novel Anandamath. The poem was first sung by Rabindranath Tagore in the 1896 session of the Indian National Congress. The first two verses of the song were adopted as the National Song of India in October 1937 by the Congress Working Committee prior to the end of colonial rule in August 1947. The mother goddess in later verses of the song has been interpreted as the motherland of the people Banga Mata (Mother Bengal) and Bharat Mata (Mother India), though the text does not mention this explicitly.
These are our identities that keep thudding in our hearts and that is why together we are a force to reckon with and the National flag, emblem, anthem and the song take us on a flight in this particular direction.
II. The evolution of the National flag:
It is really amazing to see the various changes that our National Flag went through since its first inception. It was discovered or recognised during our national struggle for freedom. The evolution of the Indian National Flag sailed through many vicissitudes to arrive at what it is today. In one way it reflects the political developments in the nation. Some of the historical milestones in the evolution of our National Flag involve the following:
Unofficial flag of India in 1906: The first national flag in India is said to have been hoisted on August 7, 1906, in the Parsee Bagan Square (Green Park) in Calcutta now Kolkata. The flag was composed of three horizontal strips of red, yellow and green.
The Berlin committee flag, first raised by Bhikaiji Cama in 1907: The second flag was hoisted in Paris by Madame Cama and her band of exiled revolutionaries in 1907 (according to some inl9OS). This was very similar to the first flag except that the top strip had only one lotus but seven stars denoting the Saptarishi. This flag was also exhibited at a socialist conference in Berlin.
The flag used during the Home Rule movement in 1917: The third flag went up in 1917 when our political struggle had taken a definite turn. Dr. Annie Besant and Lokmanya Tilak hoisted it during the Home rule movement. This flag had five red and four green horizontal strips arranged alternately, with seven stars in the saptarishi configuration super-imposed on them. In the left-hand top corner (the pole end) was the Union Jack. There was also a white crescent and star in one corner.
The flag unofficially adopted in 1921: During the session of the All India Congress Committee which met at Bezwada in 1921 (now Vijayawada) an Andhra youth prepared a flag and took it to Gandhiji. It was made up of two colours-red and green-representing the two major communities i.e. Hindus and Muslims. Gandhiji suggested the addition of a white strip to represent the remaining communities of India and the spinning wheel to symbolise progress of the Nation.
The flag adopted in 1931. This flag was also the battle ensign of the Indian National Army: The year 1931 was a landmark in the history of the flag. A resolution was passed adopting a tricolor flag as our national flag. This flag, the forebear of the present one, was saffron, white and green with Mahatma Gandhi’s spinning wheel at the center. It was, however, clearly stated that it bore no communal significance and was to be interpreted thus.
The present Tricolour flag of India: On July 22, 1947, the Constituent Assembly adopted it as Free India National Flag. After the advent of Independence, the colours and their significance remained the same. Only the Dharma Charkha of Emperor Asoka was adopted in place of the spinning wheel as the emblem on the flag. Thus, the tricolour flag of the Congress Party eventually became the tricolour flag of Independent India.
Colors of the Flag: In the national flag of India the top band is of Saffron colour, indicating the strength and courage of the country. The white middle band indicates peace and truth with Dharma Chakra. The last band is green in colour and shows the fertility, growth and auspiciousness of the land.
The Chakra: This Dharma Chakra depicted the wheel of the law in the Sarnath Lion Capital made by the 3rd-century BC Mauryan Emperor Ashoka. The chakra intends to show that there is life in movement and death in stagnation.
Flag Code: On 26th January 2002, the Indian flag code was modified and after several years of independence, the citizens of India were finally allowed to hoist the Indian flag over their homes, offices and factories on any day and not just National days as was the case earlier. Now Indians can proudly display the national flag anywhere and any time, as long as the provisions of the Flag Code are strictly followed to avoid any disrespect to the tricolor.
The tricolor once raised will flutter always and there is no flag on Earth that is more beautiful than the Indian National flag and there is no other better sight than our small children gleefully waving it in unison making the occasion even more greater. The colors have magnetic and magical effects and that is the reason as to why the Kashmiri artist is so absorbed with working on it. Perhaps fired up with thoughts such as, the Indian tricolor was raised just before sunset, and as it fluttered up the flagpole a late-monsoon rainbow emerged behind it, a glittering tribute from the heavens and O fire, O soul, give us the spark of God-eternal, that friend to friend and friend to foe, one shall we stand before him. And the flame of Jatin and the fire of Bhagat, and the love of the Mahatma in all, O, lift the flag high, lift the flag high, this is the flag of the great Indian Nation! Indeed the tricolor is!