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The Tricolor: What The Colours In India’s National Flag Signify

Tricolor, Indian National Flag
India's national flag has evolved over the years.

National Flag

The Tricolor: What The Colours In India’s National Flag Signify

It is a matter of pride for millions of Indians across the world to see the national flag flying high.

The Tricolor, the country's national flag is a symbol of free India and is known as the Tiranga as it is composed of three coloured stripes. As Mahatma Gandhi said, a flag is a necessity for all nations as it represents an ideal.

The flag, which provides a sense of national identity, went through a series of changes over four decades. The flag in its current form was adopted by the Constituent Assembly of India on 22 July 1947, days before India’s Independence from the British on August 15. It served as the national of flag of the Dominion of India till 26 January 1950, when it became the flag of the Republic of India.

Tricolor :What The National Flag Signifies

Tricolor comprises of three horizontal stripes that are equal in proportion – deep saffron (or kesariya) at the top, white in the middle and dark green at the bottom. The white band has a navy blue wheel (the Dharma Chakra) in the centre. The saffron colour in the flag symbolises the strength and courage of the country. The white stripe stands for peace and truth. The green colour in the bottom signifies the fertility, growth and auspiciousness of the land.

The Dharma Chakra in the national flag is the “Wheel of the Law” depicted in the Lion Capital at Sarnath and other edicts which came up during Emperor Ashoka’s reign in the 3rd century BC. The wheel shows that there is life in movement and death in stagnation.  The Dharma Chakra has 24 spokes.

(Also Read- Indian National Flag: How It Has Evolved Over The Decades)

The significance of the colours and the Dharma Chakra was described beautifully by Dr S Radhakrishnan in a speech in the Constituent Assembly – “Bhagwa or the saffron colour denotes renunciation of disinterestedness.  Our leaders must be indifferent to material gains and dedicate themselves to their work.  The white in the centre is light, the path of truth to guide our conduct. The green shows our relation to soil, our relation to the plant life here on which all other life depends.The Ashoka Wheel in the center of the white is the wheel of the law of dharma.  Truth or satya, dharma or virtue ought to be the controlling principles of those who work under this flag.  Again, the wheel denotes motion.  There is death in stagnation.  There is life in movement.  India should no more resist change, it must move and go forward.   The wheel represents the dynamism of a peaceful change.”


It will be necessary for us Indians Muslims, Christians Jews, Parsis, and all others to whom India is their home-to recognize a common flag to live and to die for

– Mahatma Gandhi

(Father Of Our Nation)


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