Vande Maatram playing in the voice of Lata Mangeshkar. The hoisting of our national flag. Eyes flooding with tears and heart swelling with pride. It feels fortunate to belong to a country like ours. With traditions and culture dating back centuries. Whether winning medals at the Olympics or giving respect to the great martyrs of the country. Ask an athlete or a soldier, they will tell you. How seeing our Indian Flag fills them up with pride and respect. Let’s learn a little bit more about our country’s representation- our Indian Flag. Also get Free Worksheets.
Do you know these flags?
The second one looks kinda familiar.
You see, the Indian flag had to go through many iterations to become what it is today.
This is the Indian flag we know today:
The iconic three-tiered design with the Ashok-chakra in the middle, the तिरंगा, as it’s called in Hindi. The saffron, white, and green. All of these came later.
Who made the first Indian Flag?
The Indian flag we all know and love today was originally made by Mr Pingali Venkayya.
Mr Pingali was a freedom fighter and a big Mahatma Gandhi fan hence the charkha in the middle stripe.
3 Colours and a Chakra in the middle.
There is actually a flag code of India. Which states the height, width and band size. It also states that the spokes should have an equal gap between them.
What exactly do all these symbols and colours mean?
“Why is it saffron, and why not – I don’t know, pink?!”
“Colours are still fine but why did they put the 24 spoked-chakra in the middle of the flag?”
Okay, let me explain.
The colour saffron symbolises joy and sunshine.
Of course, this is the same joy and happiness and “walking off into the sunset feeling” of finally gaining independence from those tea boys (no offence to anyone British or… who drinks tea).
It was a joke, so please don’t mind.
In 1921, Gandhi proposed the first version of the Indian Flag, which was designed by Mr Pingali Venkayya. I have shared the image above.
This version of the flag was used up until a few days before our Independence.
Certain design tweaks were done and new significance was given to the colours.
Saffron or Bhagwa Colour on the Top
The colour saffron signifies renunciation. The top leaders must be disinterested in the wealth that comes with their political position. They should dedicate their work towards the country.
White Colour in the Centre
It denotes the path of truth. Our connection to the higher power, guiding how we act, etc.
Chakra in the Middle
There is a DEEP meaning to the blue coloured chakra (or wheel). It comes from the Buddhist concept of the Law of Dharma. It means that the people working under the flag are truthful and virtuous. The chakra also represents movement, accepting change and keep moving forward towards betterment.
Green Colour at the Bottom
The colour green signifies our relation to the soil (देश की धरती). The lush green source of food, air, clothing, housing etc. This colour connects every single citizen with one another.
When do we hoist तिरंगा?
Coming to the main reason.
Why should children know about our Indian flag and it’s different forms?
To young students, the idea of a country having a completely different flag than what they know today is fascinating!
The most simple reason is that our flag is just more than its colours. They must see the journey of our flag.
Near independence day, we did an activity with primary school children. We sent out Free worksheets to parents. These worksheets were based on the colours, important days of flag hoisting etc.
Many children enthusiastically participated.
Here are a few snippets of children learning about the National Flag.
Dr Chitra Sivaram very kindly shared the following pictures of her son attempting Flag worksheets. This is Parikshith Krishnan S and he studies in grade 1.
Our flag symbolises the sacrifices and our independence. The sheer diversity of the people and various cultures in our country. It is a memory from a great nation. Our nation. Jai Hind.
What is your favourite memory around Flag hoisting? Was it sweets, distribution or dressing up in the tricolour for a skit? Let us know in the comments below.