Armed Forces Flag Day and its Significance

OV Digital Desk
5 Min Read
Armed Forces Flag Day

The Flag Day or Armed Forces Flag Day of India is observed every year on 7 December. It is a day dedicated towards collection of funds from people of India for the welfare of the Indian Armed Forces personnel. Simultaneously, on the Flag Day various organisation honours the soldiers, airmen, and sailors across India. It has been observed annually in India on 7 December since 1949.

History of the Armed Forces Flag Day

The observance of Armed Forces Flag Day in India is not dedicated to the National Flag. However, it relates to seeking public support for the welfare of defence personnel. A need arose for the government to manage the welfare of its defence personnel as soon as India achieved independence. On 28 August 1949, a committee set up by the defence minister decided to observe Flag Day on 7 December every year. In order to observe Flag Day, small flags were distributed to the public in exchange for donations. By celebrating Flag Day, the Indian civilian population acknowledges it is their responsibility to support the families and dependents of those fighting for the country in the armed forces.

Jawaharlal Nehru, who was then Prime Minister of India, on 7 December 1954, said,

A few weeks ago, I visited Indo-China and saw our officers and men attached to the International Commission there. It gave me a thrill to see their smart bearing and the good work they were doing in that distant land. What pleased me still more was their general popularity with the people there. By their efficiency as well as their friendliness, they enhanced the reputation of India. Among them were people from all parts of India. They observed no provincial or other differences amongst themselves. I am sure my countrymen will be pleased to learn of them and would like to indicate their appreciation of these young men who serve our country both here and elsewhere so well. A way to indicate that appreciation is to contribute to the Flag Day Fund.

What is purpose of Flag Day

It is a day dedicated to gathering funds from the people of India for the welfare of the Indian Armed Forces personnel. To support the rehabilitation of battle casualties, the welfare of serving personnel and their families, and the welfare of ex-servicemen and their dependents.

Are we entitled to display National Flag?
Since we are discussing Flag Day, we might have a question — are we talking about displaying the national flag? The answer is no. In India, Flag Day is related to National Flag. Another question may come to mind – can we display the national flag as we wish? The answer is the same. The display of Indian flag and usage are governed by standard protocols. Fortunately, now, we can display the National Flag every day instead of only a few selected days as is customary.
Before 2004, Indians were allowed to display the National Flag only on special occasions like Independence Day and Republic Day. The industrialist Naveen Jindal fought a decade-long battle and won the Fundamental Right to fly the National Flag. Flag Day was proposed by many Indians as the landmark Supreme Court judgement that allowed all Indians to display the National Flag on all days of the year was delivered on 23 January 2004.
How to donate to welfare fund?

It is a day dedicated to gathering funds from the people of India for the welfare of the Indian Armed Forces personnel. As a citizen, there is moral responsibility to support the Braveheart who are guarding the boarder in rain, sun, or thunder. There is dedicated fund — Armed Forces Flag Day Fund. You may consider donating by following the link here. Contributions to Armed Forces Flag Day Fund are exempted from Income Tax.

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