National symbols of India

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The Republic of India has several official national symbols including a historic document, a flag, an emblem, an anthem, a memorial tower as well as several national heroes. All the symbols were picked up at various times. The design of the national flag was adopted by the Constituent Assembly just before independence, on 22 July 1947.[1] There are also several other symbols including the national animal, bird, flower and tree.[2]

National symbols[edit]

Title Symbol Image Notes
National Flag Flag of India by Pingali Venkayya (Tiranga) Flag of India.svg A horizontal tricolour of saffron at the top, white in the middle, and green at the bottom. In the centre is a navy blue wheel with twenty-four spokes, known as the Ashoka Chakra.[1]
National Emblem National Emblem of India (Lion Capital of Asoka) Emblem of India.svg It was adopted as the National Emblem of India on 26 January 1950, the day that India became a republic. The Emblem also consists the motto of India - "Satyameva Jayate" in Devanagari Script, which means "Truth Alone Triumphs".[3]
National Calendar Indian national calendar (Saka calendar) The calendar was introduced by the Calendar Reform Committee in 1957, as part of the Indian Ephemeris and Nautical Almanac, which also contained other astronomical data, as well as timings and formulae for preparing Hindu religious calendars, in an attempt to harmonise this practice. Despite this effort, local variations based on older sources such as the Surya Siddhanta may still exist.

Usage officially started at 1 Chaitra 1879 Saka Era, or 22 March 1957.[4]

National anthem "Jana Gana Mana" by Rabindranath Tagore "Jana Gana Mana" was officially adopted by the Constituent Assembly as the Indian national anthem on 24 January 1950.[5]
National song Vande Mataram by Bankim Chandra Chatterjee The first political occasion where "Vande Mataram" was sung was the 1896 session of the Indian National Congress.[6]
National flower Indian lotus (Nelumbo nucifera) Nelumno nucifera open flower - botanic garden adelaide2.jpg Lotus is a sacred flower and occupies a unique position in the art and mythology of ancient India and has been an auspicious symbol of Indian culture.[7]
National fruit Mango (Mangifera indica) Mangifera indica (Manguier 4).jpg In India, there are over 100 varieties of mangoes, in different sizes, shapes and colours. Mangoes have been cultivated in India from time immemorial. The poet Kalidasa sang its praises. Alexander savoured its taste, as did the Chinese pilgrim Hieun Tsang. Mughal emperor Akbar planted 100,000 mango trees in Darbhanga, Bihar at a place now known as Lakhi Bagh.[8]
National river Ganga River Sunset on the Ganga river, Allahabad.jpg Ganga is the longest river of India with the most heavily populated river basin in the world. The river is revered by Hindus as the most sacred river on earth.[9]
National tree Indian Banyan or Indian fig tree (Ficus bengalensis) Banyantree.jpg The branches of Indian Banyan tree root themselves to form new trees and grow over large areas. Because of this characteristic and its longevity, this tree is considered immortal and is an integral part of the myths and legends of India.[10]
National animal Royal Bengal Tiger (Panthera tigris tigris) Panthera tigris tigris.jpg The Bengal tiger can be found throughout the country except in the north-western region.[11]
National aquatic animal Gangetic Dolphin (Platanista gangetica) GangeticDolphin.jpg Gangetic Dolphin is said to represent the purity of the holy Ganga River as it can only survive in pure and fresh water.[12]
National poet Rabindranath Tagore and Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay Tagore3.jpg
Bankim chandra chattopadhyay.jpg
The authors of Indian National Anthem Rabindranath Tagore and Indian National Song Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay[citation needed]
National bird Indian Peacock (Pavo cristatus) Peacock with outspread plumes.JPG The peacock is designated as the national bird of India.[13]
National Currency Symbol Indian Rupee Indian Rupee symbol.svg The symbol of Indian Rupee signifies India's international identity for money transactions and economic strength. The Indian Rupee sign is an allegory of Indian ethos. The symbol is an amalgam of Devanagri (Ra) and the Roman Capital R with two parallel horizontal stripes running at the top representing the national flag and also the "equal to" sign. The Indian Rupee sign was adopted by the Government of India on 15 July 2010.

The symbol, conceptualised and designed by Udaya Kumar, a post graduate in Design from Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, has been chosen from thousands of concept entries received by the Ministry of Finance through an open competition among resident Indian nationals. The process of establishing and implementing this new identity is underway through various digital technology and computer applications[14]


Title Symbol Image Notes
National game Field Hockey Indian-Hockey-Team-Berlin-1936.jpg The Ministry of Youth Affairs & Sports of India clarified that, officially, the country does not have a national game; no game, including hockey, has been notified as such.[15] However, many sources, mention field hockey as a "National Game".[16] India has won eight Olympic gold medals for field hockey. Indian field hockey's golden period was from 1928–56, when the Indian field hockey team won six successive Olympic gold medals.

State symbols[edit]

Indian states and union territories also have their symbols like state animal, state bird, state flower, etc.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "National Flag". Government of India. Retrieved 3 March 2014. 
  2. ^ "National Identity Elements of India". Retrieved January 2014. 
  3. ^ "State Emblem". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  4. ^ "National Calendar". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  5. ^ "National Anthem". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  6. ^ "National Song". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  7. ^ "National Flower". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  8. ^ "National Fruit". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  9. ^ "National River". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  10. ^ "National Tree". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  11. ^ "National Animal". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  12. ^ "National Aquatic Animal". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  13. ^ "National Bird". Government of India. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 
  14. ^ "Currency Symbol". Government of India. Retrieved 12 November 2012. 
  15. ^ "Hockey is not our national game: Ministry". Times of India. 2 August 2012. Retrieved 3 March 2014. 
  16. ^ "National Game". Government of India. Archived from the original on 11 May 2012. Retrieved 3 April 2012. 

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