The flag of India—often referred to as tiranga , meaning “tricolor”—is characterized by the three primary colors of India green, India saffron ( kesari ), and white. The saffron represents courage and sacrifice, the white stands for
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peace and truth, and the green symbolizes chivalry and faith. Even the flag’s fabric represents something special about India. According to law, all Indian flags must be made of a special hand-spun cotton or silk cloth known as khadi . The material became popular thanks to Mahatma Gandhi, an Indian activist who led the movement against British colonial rule for Indian independence. Gandhi wanted Indians to learn to make their own fabric for clothing rather than relying on British manufactured goods. The government’s Bureau of Indian Standards established the Flag Code of India, which specifies everything from how the khadi cloth is manufactured to how the flag is used. In the center of the white horizontal stripe is a blue symbol known as the Ashoka Chakra, representing a wheel with twenty-four spokes, symbolizing Gandhi’s goal of a self-reliant India. It also stands for the “eternal wheel of law,” as well as life in movement, and death in stagnation.
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