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New ensign caps a momentous day for Indian Navy — here’s what has changed

Dedicating the new ensign to Chhatrapati Shivaji, PM Modi said that India has now taken off a trace of slavery (Images courtesy: PIB)

In tune with the national mission to move away from the colonial past and befitting the rich Indian maritime heritage, Prime Minister Narendra Modi unveiled the new Naval Ensign (Nishaan) at the commissioning ceremony of the country’s first indigenous aircraft carrier Indian Naval Ship (INS) Vikrant at Cochin Shipyard Limited (CSL) on Friday.

Dedicating the new ensign to Chhatrapati Shivaji, PM Modi said that it is a history-changing act and India has now taken off a trace of slavery, a burden of slavery.

“Till now the identity of slavery remained on the flag of the Indian Navy. But from today onwards, inspired by Chhatrapati Shivaji, the new Navy flag will fly in the sea and in the sky,” said the Prime Minister.

Indian Navy

The white ensign identified nationwide with the navy, now comprises two main constituents – the National Flag in the upper left canton, and a navy blue-gold octagon at the centre of the fly side (away from the staff).

The Octagon is with twin golden octagonal borders encompassing the golden National Emblem (Lion Capital of Ashoka with ‘Satyamev Jayate’ in blue Devnagri script) resting atop an anchor and superimposed on a shield.

Below the shield, within the octagon, in a golden bordered ribbon, on a navy blue background, is inscribed the motto of the Indian Navy ‘Sam No Varunah’ in golden Devnagri script.

The design encompassed within the octagon has been taken from the Indian Naval crest, wherein the fouled anchor, which is also associated with a colonial legacy, has been replaced with a clear anchor underscoring the steadfastness of the Indian Navy.

Also Read: PM Modi imparts new identity to Indian Navy during commissioning of INS Vikrant