To hoist the flag or not to — the choice is clear

Source: The post is based on the article “To hoist the flag or not to -the choice is clear” published in the Indian Express on 25th August 2022.

Syllabus: GS 2 Important Provisions of the Constitution of India

Relevance: Fundamental Rights v/s Fundamental Duties

News:  Recently, the Prime Minister gave a slogan “har ghar tiranga”, and requested the people of India to fly flags at least on Independence Day.

What were the responses to requests for “Har Ghar Tiranga” from some sections of society?

Some people said It is freedom of choice to fly a flag or not. It can’t be forced.  Further, there is no point in flying the national flag on a particular day like Independence Day, if one is patriotic.

Some argue that they are patriotic even if they don’t show it by waving a flag or standing for our anthem.

Why is it wrong to argue for freedom of choice etc. in such cases?

Philosophically, more than freedom of choice and not standing (like for the National Anthem), all of us have a bigger responsibility i.e., to respect our flag and anthem.

For most, if it is requested by the Prime Minister of India, we should respect and honour such a request and celebrate the special occasions like the 75th year of Independence with flying of national flag

Freedom of choice comes with greater responsibility. This can be illustrated with the case of the Elected Member of Parliaments (MPs).

Case of MPs: For example, no work is taking place in Parliament in the name of freedom of choice like the Opposition parties often resort to walk out and parliamentary disruption.

The people don’t expect the elected MPs to take to the streets and hold placards in Parliament. They should use the Parliament to state their parties’ views.

What should be done?

The Opposition must stay in Parliament and state their position clearly, even if they are overruled. The ruling party must also communicate in unambiguous terms the rationale behind their position.

Parliament is for healthy debate, not for unruly behaviour. Therefore, parliament should pass a law for “no work, no pay.”

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