The Assam government is forced to purchase around 50 lakh flags from outside the state as the Assam Khadi and Village Industries Board refused to supply the tricolor at the rate set by the state government.
The state government plans to hoist around 80 lakh national flags in the state as part of the ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign as part of the ‘Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav’ celebrations.
Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sharma said the state will buy more than 50 lakh flags from the Union Textile Ministry.
According to a report in Business Northeast, the requirement of 50 lakh flags could have been easily met by the Assam Khadi and Village Industries Board, but as the rates were low, it was unable to provide the tricolor. .
Kamala Kanta Kalita, chairman of the Assam Khadi and Village Industries Board, was quoted as saying in the report, “The government of Assam discussed with us before placing the order. But the government sets the minimum price at Rs 18 to make it affordable for everyone. Our minimum price is Rs 50. Khadi material is expensive and hand woven. The whole process is manual and we couldn’t afford this loss.
He further informed that the Assam Khadi and Village Industries Board has already produced more than thirty thousand national flags for the “Har Ghar Tiranga” campaign.
The Union government is actively promoting the “Har Ghar Tiranga” campaign to celebrate 75 years of independence. The campaign encourages people to buy a national flag and raise it to mark India’s freedom.
“The idea behind the initiative is to invoke the feeling of patriotism in the hearts of the people and promote awareness of the Indian national flag,” a government statement said.
On July 31, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sharma said the flags would be available at government fair-price stores across the state for Rs 18 apiece.
He also added that many Self Help Groups (SHGs) have made larger flags which will be sold for 100-150 but the regular tricolors will only be available for Rs 18.
He urged people to raise national flags at their homes, business establishments, government and private offices, religious places and all other public places from Aug. 13 to 15.
Read also | Landslide along Assam-Meghalaya border closes Boko-Lumpi section