The Legacy of Pingali Venkayya: Designer of the Indian Flag

Pingali Venkayya – The Designer of the Indian Flag

The Indian Flag is a symbol of India’s independence and self-reliance. Its colours are Red and Green, with a spinning wheel (charkha) in the centre. The wheel represents the dharma chakra, an emblem of Mahatma Gandhi. It was adopted on July 22, 1947.

Pingali Venkayya was a freedom fighter from Andhra Pradesh who served in the British army and participated in the Boer War in South Africa, where he met Mahatma Gandhi. He designed the first version of the Indian flag.

Pingali Venkayya

Pingali Venkayya was an important person who designed the Indian flag. He was a smart man who liked to learn about many things, like languages and plants. He also studied how to make cloth by hand, so he could be more independent. He was from Machilipatnam, Andhra Pradesh. He was very interested in making a symbol for India that everyone would like, no matter what their religion was. He was also a great traveler, visiting many countries.

He was a strong believer in Gandhi’s nonviolent struggle for freedom. He joined the Indian National Congress and took part in various campaigns and agitations. In 1916, he published a booklet on flags and came up with a design that India should adopt. He also showed this design to Gandhi, and he agreed with the idea. The final flag consisted of saffron, green and white with a spinning wheel (charkha) at the centre. It was officially adopted on August 15, 1947.

Mahatma Gandhi

Mahatma Gandhi was the leader of the Indian National Congress and he felt that there was a need for a national flag to represent the Indian freedom movement. A university lecturer named Pingali Venkayya developed a flag design that Gandhi approved at a Congress meeting in 1921. It included the colours associated with India’s two main religions and a spinning wheel, known as a Charkha, in the centre.

To avoid sectarian associations, the saffron, white, and green stripes were assigned new attributions: saffron represented courage and sacrifice, white was for peace and truth, and green was for faith and chivalry. The current Indian flag, which was adopted on July 22, 1947, is based on this design.

The national flag of India consists of horizontal stripes of deep saffron (or saffron yellow), white, and green. The navy blue circle in the middle of the flag is called the Ashoka Chakra, which is taken from the Lion Capital of the Ashoka pillar at Sarnath and has twenty-four spokes.

Ashoka Chakra

India’s national flag is a horizontal tricolor of deep saffron, white and Indian green with the Ashoka Chakra (wheel of duty) in navy blue in the centre. It was adopted on July 22, 1947. The design of the flag is based on the Dharma Chakra, a symbol of Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism. It has 24 spokes and is positioned in the centre of the tricolor.

In 1921, Venkayya presented Mahatma Gandhi a rudimentary design of the Swaraj flag on a khadi bunting. It had red and green stripes to represent Hindus and Muslims respectively. At Gandhi’s request, he added a white stripe for the rest of India’s religions and denominations.

It was later modified by the Constituent Assembly committee on National Flag and replaced with a spinning wheel with ‘Ashoka Chakra’ as its central motif. The committee also recommended that the flag be flown during all official occasions. However, the Constituent Assembly resolution did not mention the name of Pingali Venkayya as its designer.


The national flag of India is an iconic symbol of the country’s diversity and unity. It was adopted on 22 July 1947, just days before India’s independence from the British Empire. It features three horizontal bands of deep saffron, white, and green, with a navy blue wheel called the Ashoka Chakra in the centre. The designer of the Indian flag, Pingali Venkayya, was a teacher, author, linguist, and agriculturist.

He had a passion for patriotism and wanted to design a flag that represented India’s cultural heritage and identity. He presented several drafts of the national flag to the All India Congress Committee at sessions held in Calcutta. Eventually, he settled on a flag with red and green bands to represent India’s main Hindu and Muslim communities. Gandhi tweaked the final design and added the Ashoka Chakra at the centre, and it became a permanent feature of the national flag. Venkayya died penniless and in poverty in 1963, and was largely forgotten by society.

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