Interesting and Unknown Facts About India’s Independence Day
On the occasion of India’s 67th Independence day, here are some interesting and unknown facts related to India and independence.
National flag was hoisted first on August 7, 1906 at the Parsee Bagan Square in Calcutta. The flag was composed of horizontal strips of red, yellow and green. The red strip at the top had eight white lotuses embossed on it in a row. The green strip had a white sun on the left and a white crescent and star on the right.
It is said that the first version of the current national flag was made by Pingali Venkayya at Bezwada in 1921. It was made up of two colours-red and green-representing the two major communities. Gandhiji suggested the addition of a white strip to represent the remaining communities of India and the spinning wheel to symbolise progress of the Nation.
The current flag has three colours in it. The top strip saffron stands for courage and sacrifice; the middle portion white for peace, truth, purity and green for faith, fertility and chivalry. The Ashok Chakra at the centre of the flag — righteousness.
Khadi Development and Village Industries Commission is the only licenced flag production and supply unit in India. As of 2008, the Karnataka Khadi Gramodyoga Samyukta Sangha based in Dharwad was the sole manufacturer of the flag. Earlier, flags were made with Jayadhar, a popular variety of cotton grown in Karnataka. But recently, Khadi Gramodyoga has started using Bt cotton instead of the indigenous varieties.
When India became independent on August 15, 1947 there was no National Anthem. Even though the Bengali invocation of Jana Gana Mana was written in 1911, it was not considered as national anthem till 1950.
Controversy surrounding Jana Gana Mana claims that Rabindranath Tagore wrote the song ‘Jana Gana Mana’ for the British monarch. He later refuted this claim and said that he wrote the song as requested by his friend and the song pronounced the victory in ‘Jana Gana Mana’ of that Bhagya Vidhata of India and not of King George V.
Mountbatten chose the day since Aug 15 as it also commemorated the second anniversary of Japan’s surrender to the Allied Forces. North Korea, South Korea, Bahrain and Republic of the Congo share their independence day with India.