Govt imposes ban on tricolour import, aims to boost Khadi industry
New Delhi: In a historic move aimed at supporting khadi artisans, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry has banned the import of National Flag from across the border by amending the import policy.
The decision in this regard was taken after it came to the notice of the government that importers are violating import policy norms by importing machine-made flags. As per the specifications prescribed under Part 1, Section 1.2 of Flag Code of India, 2002, 'the National Flag of India should be made of hand-spun and handwoven wool/cotton/silk khadi bunting'
According to a senior government official, the ministry took note of the code violation issues raised by the Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) and decided to impose a ban on the import of the National Flag. "It's in the interest of the Khadi artisans who put in their extra efforts to prepare National Flag to meet the domestic demands. The government has given a Diwali bonanza for
khadi artisans by putting the National Flag under the prohibited category," the official said.
The decision would help Khadi and Village Industries Commission (KVIC) as it's the only a statutory entity established by an Act of Parliament having the right to manufacture Indian National Flags.
"Since the last two years, KVIC noticed that the sale of National Flag was going down. The Khadi had sold National Flags to the tune of Rs 3.69 crore in the year 2017-18, which came down to Rs 3.16 crore in 2018-19 registering a decline of more than 14 per cent," the KVIC said in its official released.
The sale of flags decreased further in 2019-20 as till date the KVIC has registered the sale to the tune of Rs 1.94 crore registering a decline
of above 38 per cent, the release said.
Commenting on the issue, KVIC chairman Vinai Kumar Saxena said, "Most of the National Flags that are sold at traffic signals or outside school/colleges or in markets are either made of plastic or non-khadi fabric. All such flags are imported from other countries resulting into the sale of KVIC flags as a blatant
violation of the Flag Code was impacting the livelihood of many artisans."
At the time when the KVIC is scripting its success stories by bagging orders from different PSUs, the ban on import of National Flags has added another feather into the cap of KVIC management. Recently, the KVIC had bagged a whopping order worth Rs. 5.88 crore from the Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL) in the form of Khadi gift coupons for its 23,504 employees.
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