The Union government amended the Flag Code of India last year allowing production of polyester and machine-made national flags so that enough flags are available for its Har Ghar Tiranga (tricolour at every door) programme that proposes to cover government buildings, private offices and residences. Earlier only hand-woven and hand-spun flags made of cotton, silk, wool or Khadi were allowed.
The notification amending the Flag Code of India, 2002, by the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA), carried out on December 30 last year, says that “National Flag made of polyester or machine-made flags have been allowed. Now, the National Flag shall be made of hand-spun and hand-woven or machine-made, cotton/polyester/wool/silk khadi bunting.”
Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav
Union Home Minister Amit Shah had announced the tricolour plan as part of the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav campaign launched by the government in the run-up to the 75 years of Independence.
The programme was launched on April 12 to encourage Indians to hoist the national flag at their homes. Mr. Shah is the head of the national implementation committee for the Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav.
In a letter to government departments on May 20, the Culture Ministry said: “The idea behind this initiative is to invoke the feeling of patriotism in the hearts of citizens and promote awareness about our national flag.”
Create a buzz
The Cabinet Secretary had chaired a meeting of a committee of secretaries on Har Ghar Tiranga on May 13, the letter stated. Employees and families of ministries, departments, public sector undertakings, self-help groups, civil society organisations should have “active participation” in the programme, it said.
“Corporate and private organisations may also be encouraged, wherever possible, to participate and contribute including CSR resources,” the letter said. The ministries and departments were also asked to create a buzz and awareness by using their official websites and social media handles.
The Hindu reported on April 30 that the Karnataka Khadi Gramodyoga Samyukta Sangha (KKGSS), which runs the lone BIS-approved flag-making unit, wrote to the Prime Minister and Home Minister of India that the amendment will affect the whole of the khadi sector and the “basic tenet of khadi has been attacked.”
The hoisting, use and display of the Indian National Flag is governed by the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971, and the Flag Code of India, 2002. Dishonouring the tricolour is a punishable offence.