Karnataka forms separate panel for the State Flag

Karnataka state flag Congress Karnataka assembly elections Siddaramaiah Indian national flag Indian tricolour
As of now Jammu & Kashmir has its own flag because it enjoys a special status under Article 370 of the Constitution

20 July, 2017

There was a longstanding demand by Kannada activists for an official state flag, but now it has snowballed into a major controversy as a renewed assertion of Kannada identity with pro-Kannada activists staging a protest recently against the use of Hindi in Bengaluru's Namma Metro. Whatever the legal position, however, a State flag would undermine the spirit of national unity and must be eschewed.

In addition, they argue that considering all states have their own insignia and many states also have their own anthems, would having a state flag make a big difference? The CM said a nine-member committee has been constituted under the guidance of senior writer and journalist Patil Puttappa which is yet to submit its report on having a separate flag for Karnataka.

So far Jammu & Kashmir is the only Indian state allowed its own flag under Article 370 of the Constitution.

Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has taken up the issue before the forthcoming Assembly elections in the state.

While Chief Minister Siddharamaiah maintained that nothing unconstitutional was afoot and dared the BJP to publicly reject the demand for an official flag for Karnataka, sources in the Government said that it was a well-planned strategy by Siddharamaiah centred around Kannada and Kannadiga pride to take on BJP's Hindutva appeal. "But whether the state should have a flag or not is a grey area", he told reporters after a cabinet meeting here.

"The flag code does not permit states to have their own flag as it is against the spirit of the country's unity and integrity", said former Kannada and Culture Minister in the BJP government Govind Karjol then in the assembly. "Did BJP people come across any provision?"

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Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut has asked for President's Rule to be imposed in the state.

Mr Siddaramaiah, however, has denied that this has anything to do with the polls. He said that elections are scheduled for 2019 and it is nothing but a baseless allegation and a ploy to politicise the issue by the Opposition. "So there is no problem with Karnataka having its own flag".

Karnataka already has an unofficial state flag since the mid 1960s when pro-Kannada groups were agitating against the screening of non-Kannada films in the state.

How does the world deal with this issue?

We must have one flag.

The issue has kicked up a storm, with the state government coming under fire from various political parties and organisations.

"Importance to a regional flag does not mean rejection of the national flag".

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