Changed naval ensign unveiled this month paves the way for a new crest for the Indian Navy
News18 has learned that a major change to the Indian Navy’s new flag – which received little attention at the time of its unveiling earlier this month – could also set the stage for a new naval crest.
The new naval flag, unveiled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the sidelines of the commissioning ceremony of INS Vikrant in Kochi on 2 September, superseded the St. George’s Cross, and introduced a blue octagonal shape with the national emblem sitting atop an anchor. were involved. The national flag remained on its upper canton.
Whereas the naval flag has the national emblem drawn from the naval crest atop an anchor, the new ensign has dropped the traditional fouled anchor which is in the crest of the navy.
Top government sources told News18 that like the St George’s Cross, the fouled anchor—also a colonial-era relic—was removed when the emblem was introduced into the new naval flag.
“The part of the naval crest that is missing from the bad anchor, the new naval flag. This will set the stage for a new naval crest,” said a source, indicating that any such changes could be formally announced within the next few months.
The fouled anchor—represented by an anchor in a rope—has its roots in British naval service traditions, even as some records say they were first used by a Scottish admiral.
According to available records, the insignia has reportedly been in use for over 500 years. In addition to India, the navies of several Commonwealth countries—such as the Royal Australian Navy and the Royal Canadian Navy—continue to have bad moorings as part of their insignia.
The fouled anchor is present on all naval uniforms, including peak caps, berets, belt buckles and buttons.
In an officer’s mess, it is present with the pinnacle of command in which it is present in naval websites, brochures, presentations, publications and important communications.
Naval crests are also exchanged at important events with dignitaries from other countries.
In the initial phase, the crest was also present in the naval flag of the Indian Navy.
Changes to the naval crest, which could include the removal of a bad anchor, would mean that it would have to be replaced everywhere it currently is.
new naval ensign
Changes to the naval crest, if made, would follow the new naval flag. The new ensign, according to the Navy, was planned to honor its “civilizational heritage”.
The octagonal shape with twin golden borders enclosing the national emblem in the new naval flag reflects solidity and is inspired by the seal of the Indian emperor Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, who had 60 combat ships and a formidable naval force with over 5,000 men.
The octagonal shape represents the eight directions and symbolizes the multi-directional reach and multi-dimensional operational capability of the Indian Navy.
There has been a growing push within the military to remove the last remnants of its colonial past. Earlier this year, the traditional bhajan Abide with Me was dropped and replaced with the Hindi patriotic song Ae Mere Watan Ke Logan for the first time since 1950 at the Beating Retreat ceremony on January 29.
More such changes are in the pipeline.
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