The forgotten and ignored Pingali Venkaiah, the man who prepared the proto type of India's national flag, 88 years ago finally got some recognition with India's postal department coming out with a commemorative stamp.
The stamp, priced at Rs 5 was formally released by the Chief Minister Y S Rajasekhara Reddy at the state secretariat. The stamp carries the picture of freedom fighter Pingali along with the two designs of national flag as they were adopted by the Indian National Congress and approved by the Father of the Nation, Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi.
Though some individuals and organizations tried to keep the name and memory of Pingali Venkaiah alive, he remained largely ignored by the nation and its successive governments and no award was bestowed upon him. The stamp was to be originally released on August 2, on the occasion of Pingali's 132nd birth anniversary but it was delayed by a few days.
KHS Jagadamba, the founder and managing trustee of Pingali Venkaiah Charitable Trust recalled the hard work Pingali had put in to come up with a design of national flag. "He researched on the flags of 30 countries over a period of five years from 1916 to 1921," she said.
Finally he presented a flag with red and green strips to Gandhiji at Bezwada session of the Congress party in 1921 and this design went through some changes like addition of Charkha in the middle on the suggestion of another freedom fighter Hansraj from Jalandhar. Subsequently on suggestion of Gandhiji, white strip was also added to the flag making it tri color and Ashoka Chakra was brought in place of Charka as the national emblem.
Chief Post Master General Sundar Rajan was also present on the occasion, said that along with the stamp, a first day cover and a brochure priced at Rs 2 was also released in memory of Pingali. Mrs. Jagdamba demanded that the government of India should honor Pingali's memory by bestowing Bharat Ratna award on him.