New Delhi, Oct.22 : The five-day Mohali test match, which earned India a historic win over the world champion Australia, will also be remembered for the disrespect shown to the Tricolour-the Indian national flag-- twice on the sidelines of the match.
First it was the upside down hoisted national flag on the north pavilion on October 17, which occurred due to sheer carelessness of PCA officials. The second shocking incident was noticed when a foreign national was noticed wrapping around the Tricolour below his waist-line.
The Prevention of insults to National Honour Act (amended) Act, 2003 has provision for imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years or with fine, or with both.
The Act states whoever in any public place or in any other place within public view burns, mutilates, defaces, defiles, disfigures, destroys, tramples upon or otherwise shows disrespect to or brings into contempt (whether by words, either spoken or written, or by acts) the Indian National Flag.......... or any part thereof, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years, or with fine, or with both.
The explanation of the Act prohibits using the Indian National Flag as a drapery in any form whatsoever except in state funerals or armed forces or other para-military forces funerals.
It also states the insult to the national flag also amounts if the flag is intentionally displayed with the "saffron" down.
Using the Indian National Flag as a portion of costume or uniform of any description or embroidering or printing it on cushions, handkerchiefs, napkins or any dress material.
The expression, "Indian National Flag" includes any picture, painting, drawing or photograph, or other visible representation of the Indian National Flag, or of any part or parts thereof, made of any substance or represented on any substance.
Perhaps, the authorities have started accepting the national flag too casually to take action for. By Sandeep Datta