The committee, headed by the principal secretary, Department of Kannada and Culture, was set up last month after a representation from noted Kannada writer and journalist Patil Puttappa, and social worker Bheemappa Gundappa Gadada.
A longstanding demand by Kannada activists for an official state flag exploded into a major controversy on Tuesday, triggering allegations of subverting the Tricolour, and playing the political field ahead of Assembly elections. Former advocate general of Karnataka, Ravi Varma Kumar, said, "The Constitution provides states supremacy in their own sphere and a seven-judge Supreme Court bench has upheld this".
Though Chief Minister Siddaramaiah has defended his government's move on the grounds that constitution does not bar states from having its own flag, it is interesting to note that the Congress had opposed a similar move when proposed by BJP. "I don't see any provision anywhere, if they want to have state flag, there is nothing wrong in it", Rao told ANI.
Currently, only Jammu and Kashmir is the only state in the country to have separate official flag along with the national tri-color under Article 370 of the Constitution. "There is no restriction in the Constitution that says a state can not have its own separate flag", Rao said.
US Department of State, lawmakers condemn terrorist attack on Amarnath Yatra pilgrims
German Ambassador Martin Ney in his message said he strongly condemned the terrorist attack on behalf of his government. Congressman Jim Costa said he is "deeply saddened at the cowardly attack" on innocent Amarnath yatra pilgrims.
The State government's move to have a separate flag comes in the backdrop of rising public sentiments against BJP's Hindutva agenda and the Centre's alleged move to impose Hindi on the Kannada-speaking people of the state. Now, that the Siddaramaiah government has formed a panel to design the flag to officially accord it a legal status, it is necessary to know who designed the Yellow and Red flag, that is proudly hoisted on every galli during Rajyotsava. A state can have its own flag.
Experts HT spoke to, said there was no legal bar on a state flag.
The BJP has chose to flag up the controversy surrounding a separate flag for the state of Karnataka as an issue of anti-nationalism.
Home ministry officials explained Karnataka already had a flag representing only the "people and not the government".