With the arrival of the Independence Day, the demand or craze for the Indian flag or tricolor suddenly increases. Schools, colleges, homes, office, vehicles, clothes, etc are thronged by our flag of different sizes and materials. But hardly few of us know about the evolution of our flag and also the fact that it went through five different makeovers before getting its final look. So let’s have a look at the evolution of our national flag during the pre-independence era.
I don’t claim the below information to be my own. The information is compiled from the website of Government Of India – www.india.gov.in.
This was the first Indian flag ever which was hoisted in Kolkata in 1906. This flag was composed of three colors, green, yellow and red with the words Vande Mataram inscribed in the centre.
In 1907, the second form of Indian flag was hoisted in Paris by Madam Cama and her group of revolutionaries. Except for a few changes, the flag was similar to the first one.
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This was the most colorful version of the Indian flag. This flag was brought out in 1917 when the freedom struggle in India had taken a huge turn. This flag was hoisted by Dr. Annie Besant and Lokmanya Tilak during the Home Rule Movement. The flag consisted red and green horizontal lines and also had the Union Jack at the top left corner.
A youngster presented this version of the flag to Mahatma Gandhi in 1921 during the All India Congress Committee session that took place in Bezwada (now Vijaywada) in Andhra Pradesh. The red and green color in the flag represents two communities – Hindus and Muslims. As per Gandhiji’s suggestion, a white strip was included which indicated other religions and communities and a spinning wheel which portrays the progress of India.
The year 1931 was a landmark in the history of the national flag. The tricolor was adopted as the national flag of India as per a resolution passed. The three colors include saffron, white and green with Mahatma Gandhi’s spinning wheel or charkha in the centre.
The Constituent Assembly adopted the earlier version as the flag of Independent India. However, the only difference carried out was that Gandhiji’s spinning wheel was replaced by emperor Ashoka’s Dharma Chakra. This thus became the flag of Independent India in 1947.
On the occasion of our Independence, let us remember and salute those who sacrificed their lives and also those who borne innumerable pain to make India a free country. Vande Mataram!