Pingali Venkayya birthday, Pingali Venkayya birth anniversary: Freedom fighter Pingali Venkayya was the designer of India’s National Flag. A farmer, a geologist, a lecturer at the Andhra National College in Machilipatnam and a fluent speaker of Japanese, he was the articet of the Tricolour. In fact, he was so fluent in Japanese that he was famously known as ‘Japan Venkayya’.
Pingali Venkayya was born near Machilipatnam on August 2, 1876. Pingali Venkayya went to South Africa to fight in the war as a British Indian Army soldier. It was in South Africa that he was struck by the sense of nationhood the Union Jack inspired among British soldiers.
Venkayya went on to design many models of the national flag. It was in 1921 when Mahatma Gandhi approved a design at the Indian National Congress meeting in Vijayawada.
The version presented by Venkayya to Mahatma Gandhi had two stripes — green and red, and the Gandhian charkha at the centre. On Mahatma Gandhi’s suggestion, Venkayya added a white stripe on top and this became the original Tricolour.
The flag was used informally at all Congress meetings since 1921. During its 1931 session, Congress adopted the Tricolour with the colour scheme — saffron, white and green and the charkha at the centre.
The flag became the standard of Mahatma Gandhi’s non-violent freedom movement.
To mark his birth anniversary, the Central government will release a special commemorative postage stamp on August 2. Prime Minister Narendra Modi will release the stamp at a programme in New Delhi. The government has invited family members of Pingali Venkayya for the programme.
Pingali Venkayya died in penury and oblivion in 1963. Back in 2009, a postage stamp in his honour was released. The Vijayawada station of the All India Radio (AIR) was also named after him in 2014.
Meanwhile, Union Minister for Tourism and Culture G Kishan Reddy noted that there is a demand to confer Bharat Ratna, India’s highest civilian award, on Pingali Venkaiah. Last year, Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy had proposed his name for the Bharat Ratna.