Sikhs and Flag of India

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Flag of India

During India's freedom struggle leading to independence in 1947, Sikhs had played a vital role to free the country from the British. Sikhs were considered as giant and offered the unconditional cooperation to the Congress party. However they refused to fight under the Congress flag. Baba Kharak Singh, President of SGPC strongly opposed the proposed flag until Sikh color, Saffron( Kesari) was added to the Flag.

On August 31, 1930, Baba Kharak Singh was brought on a stretcher to the SGPC meeting. He threatened to resign unless the Shiromani Akali Dal refused to fight under the Congress flag which did not include the Sikh colour, SAFFRON (Kesari). He did not want the Sikhs to be taken for granted. The Punjab Provincial Congress Committee (PPCC) recommended incorporation of the Sikh colour in the national flag. [1]

Appointed a Flag Committee

A committee was appointed by the Working Committee to resolve this issue. In the letter date June 31, 1931 to Sikh league Gandhi wrote about the Committee, "So far as the recommendations about the flag are concerned I would advise you to send them to the Secretary of the Flag Committee appointed by the Working Committee of the Congress. The convener and the Secretary of the Flag Committee is Dr. Pattabhi Sitaramayya, Masulipatam, S. India." [2]

Acceptance of a Sikh color

  • In session Gandhi says, "It should be remembered, that the white, green, and red tricolour flag was never authoritatively adopted by the Congress. It was conceived by me, and I had certainly given it a communal meaning. It was intended to represent communal unity.The Sikhs protested and demanded their colour. Consequently a Committee was appointed. It collected valuable evidence and made useful recommendations. And now we have a flag which has been authoritatively robbed of any communal meaning, and has a definite meaning assigned to each colour. The red has been replaced by saffron colour, and is put first purely from the artistic standpoint."[3]
  • session August 6 to 8, 1931 All India Congress Committee(AICC) adopted a flag by the following resolution almost unanimously passed:
"The National Flag shall be three-coloured, horizontally arranged as before, but the colours shall be saffron, white and green, in the order stated here, from top to bottom, with the spinning-wheel in dark blue in the centre of the white stripe; it being understood that the colours have no communal significance, but that saffron shall represent courage and sacrifice, white peace and truth, and green shall represent faith and chivalry, and the spinning-wheel the hope of the masses. The proportions of the flag should be fly to hoist as three to two"

See also

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