INDIA’S ONLY BIS-CERTIFIED FLAG-MAKING UNIT
Why in news?
The country’s sole Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS)-recognised national flag manufacturing unit of Karnataka Khadi Gramodyog Samyukta Sangha, Bengeri, at Hubballi in northern Karnataka, is not making preparations for the platinum jubilee celebrations of Independence. This is the unit which supplies the Tricolour to be hoisted atop the Red Fort.
- Every year, by the end of July, the Samyukta Sangha would have despatched national flags worth ₹5 crore.
The reason for disinterest
- The Centre’s amendment to the National Flag Code allowing flags made of polyester cloth, the Sangha has not even received half the usual orders. So far, it has orders for flags worth just around ₹ 1.2 crore, but the Sangha has raw material stock to supply flags worth ₹5 core.
- The second and probably more important reason is that a polyester flag is very cheap when compared to the khadi flag.
- ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ is a campaign under the aegis of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav to encourage people to bring the Tiranga home and to hoist it to mark the 75th year of India’s independence. Our relationship with the flag has always been more formal and institutional than personal. Bringing the flag home collectively as a nation in the 75th year of independence thus becomes symbolic of not only an act of personal connection to the Tiranga but also an embodiment of our commitment to nation-building. The idea behind the initiative is to invoke the feeling of patriotism in the hearts of the people and to promote awareness about the Indian National Flag.
‘Har Ghar Tiranga’
- There is no demand for khadi flags manufactured here even when the government has launched the ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign.
- One reason for this is the size specified under the campaign (20X30 inches and 16×27 inches) is not permitted under the BIS’ standards for the national flag.
About the Karnataka Khadi Gramodyog Samyukta Sangha
- The unit in Hubballi, recognised by BIS in 2004, meticulously follows the Flag Code and manufactures only nine specified sizes of the flag. BIS officials make tri-monthly visits to ensure that standards and quality are maintained.
- In all, around 1,200 persons, mainly women, are involved in the national flag manufacturing work in over 15 units of the Sangha spread across the districts of Dharwad and Bagalkot. While Bengeri in Hubballi houses the flag manufacturing unit, where the work of stitching, printing and dyeing takes place, the khadi cloth is spun and woven in khadi units. Including at Tulasigeri, spread over the district of Bagalkot.
- The Khadi Sangha in Garag of Dharwad district is a separate unit where the khadi cloth for the flag is woven, but it has currently stopped production.
Amendments to the flag code:
- In another instance, as part of the same campaign, the government has changed the country’s flag code by allowing the tricolour to fly both day and night.
- The Flag Code of India, 2002 has been further amended through an order on July, 20, 2022 and clause (xi) of paragraph 2.2 of Part-II of the Flag Code of India, 2002 shall now be read as: (xi) “where the Flag is displayed in open or displayed on the house of a member of public, it may be flown day and night”.