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India’s Flag Code Rules

  • 16 Aug 2021
  • 4 min read

Why in News

On 15th August, 2021, India celebrated its 75th Independence Day, and like every year the Prime Minister of India hoisted the National Flag at the Red Fort to commemorate the day.

Key Points

  • History of Adopting India’s Flag:
    • 1906:
      • The first national flag, which consisted of three horizontal stripes of red, yellow and green, is said to have been hoisted on 7th August, 1906, at the Parsee Bagan Square, near Lower Circular Road, in Calcutta (now Kolkata).
    • 1921:
      • Later, in 1921, freedom fighter Pingali Venkayya met Mahatma Gandhi and proposed a basic design of the flag, consisting of two red and green bands.
    • 1931:
      • After undergoing several changes, the Tricolour was adopted as our national flag at a Congress Committee meeting in Karachi in 1931.
    • 1947:
      • The Indian flag was adopted in its present form during a meeting of the Constituent Assembly held on 22nd July, 1947.
  • Rules Governing the Tricolour:
    • The Emblems and Names (Prevention of Improper Use) Act, 1950:
      • It restricts the use of the national flag, the coat-of-arms used by a government department, the official seal of the President or Governor, the pictorial representation of Mahatma Gandhi and the Prime Minister, and the Ashoka Chakra.
    • The Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971:
      • It prohibits the desecration of or insult to the country’s national symbols, including the national flag, the Constitution, the national anthem and the Indian map.
      • A person who is convicted for the following offences under the Act is disqualified to contest in the elections to the Parliament and state legislature for 6 years.
        • Offence of insulting the National Flag,
        • Offence of insulting the Constitution of India,
        • Offence of preventing the singing of the National Anthem.
    • The Flag Code of India, 2002:
      • It allowed the unrestricted display of the Tricolour as long as the honour and dignity of the flag were being respected.
      • The flag code did not replace the pre-existing rules governing the correct display of the flag.
        • It was, however, an effort to bring together all the previous laws, conventions and practices.
      • It is divided into three parts — a general description of the tricolour, rules on display of the flag by public and private bodies and educational institutions, and rules for display of the flag by governments and government bodies.
      • It mentions that the tricolour cannot be used for commercial purposes, and cannot be dipped in salute to any person or thing.
      • Moreover, the flag should not be used as a festoon, or for any kind of decoration purposes.
      • For official display, only flags that conform to the specifications as laid down by the Bureau of Indian Standards and bearing their mark can be used.
    • Part IV-A of the Constitution:
      • The Part IV-A of the Constitution (which consists of only one Article 51-A) specifies the eleven Fundamental Duties.
      • According to Article 51A (a), it shall be the duty of every citizen of India to abide by the Constitution and respect its ideals and institutions, the National Flag and the National Anthem.

Source: IE

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