Karnataka's decision to for separate flag and alleged imposition of Hindi
- Author: Megan Austin Jul 20, 2017,
Jul 20, 2017, 0:52
This time around, however, it is not a fringe organisation but the state government itself that has taken the issue up with the appointment of a nine member committee to design a state flag and submit a report on giving it legal sanctity. The issue drew attention again when the Karnataka government constituted a panel, the move which is being seen as an effort by Congress-led government to woo pro-Kannada vote bank.The BJP is not in favour of having a separate flag for the state.
The committee, headed by the principal secretary, Department of Kannada and Culture, was set up last month following a representation from noted Kannada writer and journalist Patil Puttappa, and social worker Bheemappa Gundappa Gadada.
Previously, the Karnataka CM had asserted that there was no legal bar on states over having a separate flag.
Officials of Union Home Ministry have instantly, and rightly so, gave clarification against any such separate flag for a state.
The red and yellow flag has been Karnataka's unofficial state flag for decades.
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Yeddyurappa said BJP is not opposed to having a separate flag. A state can have its own flag.
Challenging the "one nation, one flag" stand of the BJP, the state law Minister on Wednesday declared that there was nothing illegal about having a flag for Karnataka. The party is embarrassed by how the opposition has used the move to turn the tables on it. In a statement by K'taka CM, he said, "As the Constitution does not bar states from having their own flag for a separate identity, we will consider it if the panel recommends". Siddaramaiah is banking on the surmise that the judiciary would uphold the right to have its own flag so long as the supremacy of the national flag is not violated which in effect would mean that it must be flown lower than the national tricolour. The Karnataka flag will naturally fly below the national flag.
Senior Supreme Court lawyer and constitutional expert Pavani Parameswara Rao told Kaumudi Online, "A state can have its own flag". The issue of giving the northeastern state its own flag is nearly decided, sources told Hindustan Times in this 2016 report. And it comes along with increasing Kannada hostility to attempts by New Delhi to impose Hindi on the state.
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