The Jammu and Kashmir state flag was taken off the Civil Secretariat building in Srinagar on Sunday and replaced with the tricolour more than a fortnight after the Centre scrapped special status of the state.
The red flag with a plough and three stripes will no longer be in use, and the two UTs — Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh — will henceforth fly only the Tricolour. Jammu and Kashmir adopted a separate constitution in 1956, under which it was permitted to fly its own flag.
On August 7, Jammu and Kashmir Assembly Speaker Nirmal Singh removed the state flag from his official car, becoming the first Constitutional functionary to remove the state flag from his official vehicle.
Jammu and Kashmir was under lockdown since August 4 after the government snapped mobile lines, internet connections and cable TVs. On August 5, a Presidential Order revoked provisions of Article 370, which granted special status to Jammu and Kashmir.
Three days later, Parliament ratified this decision and passed the Jammu and Kashmir Reorganisation Bill, 2019, which bifurcates the state into two Union Territories — Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh. Curbs have been lifted in many parts of the state, the government says.
In 1952, a Delhi Agreement signed between Jammu & Kashmir and the Union of India on behalf of Sheikh Abdullah and Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru stated that “the Union Government agreed that the State should have its own flag in addition to the Union flag, but it was agreed by the State Government that the State flag would not be a rival of the Union flag; it was also recognised that the Union flag should have the same status and position in Jammu and Kashmir as in the rest of India, but for historical reasons connected with the freedom struggle in the State, the need for continuance of the State flag was recognised”.
The flag was red in colour, in remembrance of the bloodshed from the Kashmir agitation on July 13, 1931 — the day is celebrated as Martyrs’ Day. The state flag had three stripes, which represented the regions of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh. The plough was for the farmer.
Sources: NDTV, The Indian Express.