New Delhi, October 16: In a bid to boost production of the national flag made of Khadi cloth, the government has imposed a ban on import of tricolour from China and other countries. The Directorate General of Foreign Trade on October 11 issued a notification, banning import of the Indian national flag "not adhering to specifications prescribed" in the Flag Code of India. The government hopes this will result in an increase in the sale of tricolour made by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC). Independence Day 2019: Naxal-Affected Kasalpada Village Unfurls Tricolour First Time Since India Attained Freedom.
According to the Flag Code of India, the tricolour can only be made of hand-spun and handwoven wool, cotton, silk khadi "bunting". Most of the flags sold at traffic signals or outside a school are either made of plastic or non-khadi fabric and shipped from across the border. This led to a decline in the sale of tricolour made by the KVIC. During 2017-18, KVIC's flag sales were estimated at Rs 3.7. There was a decline of 14 percent in 2018-19. Say NO to Plastic Tricolour Flags While Celebrating the Indian National Festival.
In the first half of the current fiscal, sales were estimated at under Rs 2 crore. Subsequently, the KVIC urged Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal to ban the import of flags from China and other countries. KVIC chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena had argued that the Indian national flags made by China and other countries "violate the Flag Code" and the export of the tricolour was impacting the livelihood of many, Times of India reported.
Acting on the KVIC's request, the government has banned the import of the tricolour, allowing only the Khadi and Village Industries Commission to manufacture national flags.