This year India celebrated 75 years of independence as “Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav”. During this celebration, Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked all the citizens of the country to hoist the national flag between August 13 to August 15 under “Har Ghar Tiranga” Campaign. Several violations took place during that celebration including people putting the national flag on their cars. But is it allowed?
Can everyone fly the flag of India on car?
Not everyone can fly a flag on their cars. The rules and instructions to hoist or display the Tiranga are mentioned in the Flag Code of India 2002 and the Prevention of Insults to National Honour Act, 1971.
About Flag Code Of India, 2002
Flag Code Of India, 2002 is a set of laws, practices and conventions that govern the display of the national flag. It is divided into three parts which include
- First Part: General Description of the National Flag.
- Second Part: Display of the National Flag by members of public, private Organisations & educational institutions, etc.
- Third Part: Display of National Flag by Union or State Governments and their organisations and agencies.
18 Laws About Indian National Flag You Must Know: National Flag Display Rules
The national flag is the honour of the country and there are certain rules that need to be followed to maintain the dignity of the national flag. In this article, you’ll read everything you need to know about the rules related to the Indian national flag and to hoist it. This article will help you get aware of some interesting as well as unknown facts about Indian national flag hoisting rules. You’ll come to know about the violations that you or some other person might have committed unintentionally which could have landed you in legal trouble.
1. Who Is Allowed To Display The National Flag On Vehicles?
Section IX of the Flag Code enlists constitutional dignitaries who can fly flags on their motorcars.
- President and the Vice President of India,
- Governor and the Lieutenant Governor,
- Prime Minister and other Cabinet Ministers
- Minister of State at the Center
- Chief Minister and Cabinet Minister
- Lok Sabha Speaker
- Rajya Sabha Vice Chairman and Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha,
- Speakers of Indian Missions Posts abroad,
- Speakers of Legislative Assemblies and Councils
- Chief Justice of India, Judges of Supreme Court, Chief Justices and Judges of the High Court.
2. Draping Flag Over Hood, Top, Sides Or Back Of The Vehicle Not Allowed
As per the provisions related to misuses of national flag display under Section 3.23, the flag shall not be draped over the hood, top, sides and back of the vehicle, boat or train.
3. Correct Display Of National Flag In Vehicle
As per Section 3.12, “When the flag is displayed alone on a motor car, it shall be flown from a staff, which should be affixed firmly either on the middle front of the bonnet or to the front right side of the car.
4. Punishment For Violating Flag Rules
As per The Prevention of Insults To National Honour Act, 1971,
“Whoever in any public place or in any other place within public view burns, mutilates, defaces, difiles, disfigures, destroys, tramples upon or 1 [otherwise shows disrespect to or brings] into contempt (whether by words, either spoken or written, or by acts) the Indian National Flag or the Constitution of India or any part thereof, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.”
5. Amendments In the Flag Code of India
What is the right time to hoist a flag?
Is there any particular time to display the Indian tricolor flag?
Are there any rules about the materials used to make the national flag?
The amendments in the Flag Code of India answer all your questions. The two amendments include
- In the latest amendment on July 20, 2022, the Centre government allowed to fly the flag during day as well as night if it is displayed in the open or in the house of a member of the public. Prior to that amendment, the flag could only be hoisted between sunrise and sunset.
- On December 30, 2021, the government allowed the use of handspun and handwoven or machine-made, cotton, polyester, wool, silk or khadi bunting. Earlier, only khadi was allowed to make the tricolour flag.
6. Can Anyone Hoist A National Flag?
Paragraph 2.2 of the Flag Code of India states, “Any person, organisation, private or public, or educational institution (including scout camps) can hoist or display the Tricolour on “all days or occasions in accordance with the dignity and honour of the National Flag”.”
Therefore, all private persons have the right to fly a flag on their personal property.
7. What Is The Ideal Size Of A National Flag?
There is no specific size of the Indian national flag. But the ratio of the length to the height (width) of the National Flag shall be 3:2 and should be in rectangular shape.
8. No One Can Use The National Flag For
What are the restrictions on the use of the national flag? Can a person wear the Indian tricolour flag to display love for the nation?
No, the law doesn’t allow a person this. All persons are forbidden from using the national flag as a portion of a costume or uniform. In addition to that, the law also forbids people from wearing it as an accessory below the waist.
The flag cannot be embroidered or printed on cushions, handkerchiefs, undergarments or any other dress material.
9. Rules Related To The Use And Dispose Of A Damaged Flag
As per the rules, a damaged and disheveled flag should not be displayed. A person can destroy a damaged flag as a whole in private, preferably by burning or by any method consistent with the dignity of the flag. Persons who wave flags made up of paper should not throw them on the ground.
10. Placement Of Flag During Foreign Dignitary Travels In Govt Vehicle
Para 3.46 of the Codes reads that if a foreign dignitary travels in a government vehicle, the Indian national flag will be flown on the right side of the car and the flag of the foreign countries will be flown on the left side of the car.
11. Tricolour Positioning: Rules To Follow While Displaying National Flag
- A damaged and disheveled flag should not be displayed
- The flag should not be displayed in an inverted manner. The saffron band should be towards the top.
- Whenever the National flag is flown, it should occupy the position of honour and be distinctly placed.
- The National flag shall always be hoisted briskly and lowered slowly and ceremoniously. When the hoisting and the lowering of the flag is accompanied by appropriate bugle calls, the hoisting and lowering should be simultaneous with the bugle calls.
- When a National flag is displayed from a staff projecting horizontally or at an angle from a windowsill, balcony or front of a building, the saffron band shall be at the farther end of the staff.
- When the National flag is displayed flat and horizontal on a wall, the saffron band shall be uppermost and when displayed vertically, the saffron band shall be to the right with reference to the flag, i.e. it may be to the right of a person facing it.
- When displayed over the middle of a street, running east-west or north-south, the National flag shall be suspended vertically with the saffron to the north, or to the east as the case may be.
- When the National flag is displayed on a speaker’s platform, it shall be flown on a staff on the speaker’s right as he faces the audience or flat against the wall above and behind the speaker.
- When used on occasions like the unveiling of a statue, the National flag shall be displayed distinctly and separately.
- When a National flag is carried in a procession or a parade, it shall be either on the marching right, that is the flag’s own right, or if there is a line of other flags, in front of the centre of the line.
- The flag must not be dipped in salute to any person or thing.
- No other flag or bunting shall be placed higher than or above or side by side with the National flag; nor shall any object, including flowers or garlands or emblem be placed on or above the flag mast from which the National flag is flown.
- The National flag must not be used as a festoon, rosette or bunting or in any other manner for decoration; nor shall other coloured pieces of cloth be so arranged as to give the appearance of the National flag.
- The National flag must not be used to cover a speaker’s desk nor should it be draped over a speaker’s platform.
- It should not be displayed or fastened in any manner as it may damage it.
- It should not be allowed to touch the ground or the floor or trail in water.
- The National flag must not be misused in any manner.
12. Positioning Of Indian Flag On Indian Territory
- When the Indian flag is flown on Indian territory along with other national flags, the general rule is that the Indian flag should be the starting point of all flags.
- When flags are placed in a straight line, the rightmost flag is the Indian flag, followed by other national flags in alphabetical order.
- When placed in a circle, the Indian flag is the first point and is followed by other flags alphabetically. In such placement, all other flags should be of approximately the same size with no other flag being larger than the Indian flag.
- Each national flag should also be flown from its own pole and no flag should be placed higher than another.
- In addition to being the first flag, the Indian flag may also be placed within the row or circle alphabetically.
- When placed on crossed poles, the Indian flag should be in front of the other flag, and to the right (observer’s left) of the other flag. The only exception to the preceding rule is when it is flown along with the flag of the United Nations, which may be placed to the right of the Indian flag.
13. Positioning Of Indian Flag With Non-National Flags
When the Indian flag is displayed with non-national flags, including corporate flags and advertising banners, the rules state that if the flags are on separate staffs, the flag of India should be in the middle, or the furthest left from the viewpoint of the onlookers, or at least one flag’s breadth higher than the other flags in the group. Its flagpole must be in front of the other poles in the group, but if they are on the same staff, it must be the uppermost flag.
If the flag is carried in procession with other flags, it must be at the head of the marching procession, or if carried with a row of flags in line abreast, it must be carried to the marching right of the procession.
14. Half Masting
Half-masting is flying a flag half the way down a pole to which a flag is moved to show respect for a dead person. Half masting is a sign of state mourning. The decision about the same lies with the President of India. During half-masting, it must first be raised to the top of the mast and then slowly lowered. During such state mourning, all other flags remain at the normal height.
- In case of the death of Prime Minister, President, Vice-President, the flag is flown half-mast nationwide.
- On the death of the Chief Justice of India or Lok Sabha Speaker, the flag is flown half-mast in Delhi.
- On the death of the Supreme Court Judges and Union Ministers, it is flown half-mast in Delhi, in the state of their origin and in their respective departments all over India
- On the death of the Governors, Lieutenant Governors, Chief Ministers and the Chief Justices of High Courts, the flag is flown at half-mast in the respective states and union territories.
- In case of High Court Judges and top Cabinet Ministers of the state governments, it is flown half-mast in their respective districts of origin.
15. Half Masting On National Holidays
In circumstances where a death coincides with Republic Day (26 January), Independence Day (15 August), Gandhi Jayanti (2 October) or states’ foundation anniversaries, the flag should not be flown half-mast except over buildings housing the body of the deceased dignitary. However, even in such cases, the flag must be raised to the full mast when the body is moved from the building.
16. Fundamental Right To Fly National Flag
The Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice of India V. N. Khare had noted that as per Article 19(1)(a) of the Constitution of India, citizens had the fundamental right to fly the national flag on their premises throughout the year, provided the premises do not undermine the dignity of the national flag.
17. Correct Way To Fold National Flag After Independence Day
Recently, the Ministry of Culture shared a four-step guide on how to fold the national flag.
Step 1: After bringing down the Indian national flag, it must be placed horizontally.
Step 2: The two bands, saffron and green, will have to be folded beneath the white band.
Step 3: The citizens need to fold the white band in such a manner that the Ashoka Chakra is visible with parts of the saffron and green bands.
Step 4: They need to carry the folded Indian national flag in their arms or palms and store it in a safe place.
18. How To Dispose Of A Damaged Flag?
There are two ways through which you can dispose of the national flag — Burying and Burning
Burying — Collect, fold and place all the damaged flags in a wooden box properly. Bury the box in the earth and observe a moment of silence once the flags are buried.
Burning — Choose a safe place and clean it. Build a fire and place the folded flags in centre of the flames. It is an offence to burn flags without folding or burning them directly.
So, these are some of the interesting and unknown facts about the National Flag of India and also the laws which govern the hoisting and maintain its dignity. Hopefully, this article will be able to help you understand the significance of dignity of our national flag and ways to maintain it.
This article is written by Varsha. You can reach out to the author via email at email@example.com.