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India

Indian Navy To Get New Ensign, PM Modi To Unveil It In Kochi

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will unveil the new ensign of the Indian Navy during the commissioning of the country's first indigenously-built aircraft carrier -- INS Vikrant.

INS Vikrant
India’s First Indigenous Aircraft Carrier INS Vikrant (ANI Photo)

New Delhi: Indian Navy is all set to get a new ensign that will “do away with the colonial past”. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will unveil the new ensign of the Indian Navy during the commissioning of the country’s first indigenously-built aircraft carrier — INS Vikrant on September 2, the PMO said on Tuesday.

“At 9:30 AM on September 2, the Prime Minister will commission the first indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant at Cochin Shipyard Limited in Kochi,” the statement said.

“During the event, the Prime Minister will also unveil the new Naval Ensign (Nishaan), doing away with the colonial past, and befitting the rich Indian maritime heritage,” it said.

The Indian Navy draws its origin to the colonial period.

On October 2, 1934, the naval service was renamed Royal Indian Navy (RIN), with its headquarters at Bombay (now Mumbai), according to infirmation shared on a website of the Indian Navy.

With the partition of India, post-independence, the Royal Indian Navy was divided into the Royal Indian Navy and the Royal Pakistan Navy.

With India becoming a Republic on January 26, 1950, the prefix ‘Royal’ was dropped and it was rechristened as the Indian Navy.

The current ensign of the Navy is a white flag with horizontal and vertical red stripes, with the Emblem of India emblazoned at the intersection of the two stripes. The tricolour is placed in the canton.

The Union Jack was replaced with the tricolour after Independence in 1947, in the canton.

The horizontal and vertical red stripes, symbolising the Cross of Saint George, are reminiscent of the colonial era, and are likely to be dropped in the design incorporated for the new ensign.

On 26 January 1950, the Crown in the naval crest, depicted with an anchor, was replaced by Ashokan Lion for the Indian Navy’s Emblem. The invocation to Lord Varuna (The Sea God) in the Vedas was adopted by it for its emblem, with the motto: “Sam no Varunah”, meaning: ‘Be auspicious unto us Oh Varuna’. The inscription of ‘Satyamev Jayate’ below the State Emblem was included in crest.

INS Vikrant will contribute in ensuring peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific and Indian Ocean region, Vice Chief of Indian Navy Vice Admiral S N Ghormade had said on August 25, ahead of the commissioning of the warship which is built at a cost of around Rs 20,000 crore.