The national flag of India is in tricolor having three horizontal stripes with deep saffron at the top, white in the middle and dark green at the bottom in equal proportions. The ratio of the width to the length of the flag is two is to three. In the centre of the white band, there is a wheel in navy blue to indicate what is known as the Dharma Chakra which is considered to be the wheel of law in the Sarnath Lion Capital. This chakra is a Buddhist symbol dating back to 200th century BC. It has 24 spokes in it which stands as a metaphor of life in movement and death in stagnation.
The saffron color stands for courage and sacrifice; the white stands for purity and truth and the color green stands for faith and fertility. It was on 22nd July 1947 that the design of the National Flag of India was adopted by India’s constituent assembly. The country flag of India symbolizes freedom. India’s first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru called the flag a symbol of freedom for all people and not just for the countrymen.
The preliminary design for the Indian flag was done by sister Nivedita in 1906. However it was Madam Bhikaji Cama who first unfurled the first Indian flag of freedom in Stuttgart in the year 1907 at the socialist congress meeting. Her flag had the sun, the moon, seven stars and the lotus with Vande Mataram inscribed on the central white portion.
It took a long process of evolution to bring the National flag of India to what it is now.
There was a lot of debate about the meaning of the India flag before the congress declared in 1931 that the three colors saffron, white and green represent certain qualities and not communities. The Indian flag was made using the ‘khadi’ cloth.
The final design of the Indian flag was approved on 22nd July 1947 by the constituent assembly. This is the design, which is unfurled on all occasions of Indian flag hoisting, to fill the hearts of Indians with patriotism. A national protocol is supposed to be observed while displaying the national flag in India. The flag is supposed to be hoisted at sunrise and lowered at sunset except in special circumstances. It is also prohibited to show the Indian flag upside down and considered irreverent to keep the flag in a dirty and tattered mode.
When talking about the Indian Flag, it represents the hopes and aspirations of the people of India. It is the symbol of national pride and patriotism. It is advised that the National Flag of India shall be made of hand woven wool or cotton or silk or khadi bunting.
During the Indian flag hoisting, the Flag should always be hoisted briskly and lowered slowly. The hoisting and lowering of the flag should be simultaneously with the bugle calls, if any. During the ceremony of hoisting, all persons present should face the Flag and stand in attention. They should render the appropriate salute..
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