Can Karnataka have its own flag? State govt sets up committee
The Karnataka government has formed a committee to look into the legalities of having a separate flag for the state. The nine-member panel was constituted on July 10 by an order of the Kannada and Culture Department following requests from activists for an official state flag — there is already an unofficial yellow and red flag. The committee is tasked with looking into the design of a new one and the legalities of Karnataka having its own flag.
Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said the move has nothing to do with the upcoming state Assembly elections. "Is there any provision in the constitution that prohibits a state from having a flag?" he was quoted as saying by news agency ANI. "It has nothing to do with elections. If BJP is opposed to it then can they say openly that they are against a state flag."
Meanwhile, K C Venugopal, Congress Karnataka in-charge, said there is only one flag, the national flag. "I will seek a clarification from the state government. We have only one flag and that is the national flag," he said, reported ANI.
Back in 2012, Karnataka began using an unofficial state flag under the B S Yeddyurappa-led BJP government. After the government authorised its use, it was first hoisted on November 1, the day the state was formed. However, its use was challenged in the Karnataka High Court forcing the government to withdraw its notification allowing for its use.
If the flag is formally introduced in the state, Karnataka will become the second state after Jammu and Kashmir to have its own flag. J&K, which enjoys special powers under Article 370 of the Constitution, adopted its own flag in 2015. Under the Article 144 of the J&K Constitution, the state flag is "red in colour with three equidistant white vertical strips of equal width next to the staff and a white plough in the middle with handle facing the strips".