Smriti Irani's national flag edict: Twitterati react with support and sarcasm

Smriti Irani’s Human Resources Development Ministry has issued a diktat that all central universities should fly the national flag all year round.

Smriti Iranis national flag edict: Twitterati react with support and sarcasm

Smriti Irani. PTI

"At a central place in every university, the national flag will be flown prominently and proudly," the resolution passed at a meeting Irani had with the Vice Chancellors of Central universities, said.

The move drew a sharp reaction from the Congress which said nationalism doesn't mean hoisting the flag and singing Vande Mataram and that it should be reflected in one's belief in the Constitution. CPM leader Brinda Karat also slammed government for the decision.

The decision came in the midst of raging row over the arrest of JNU students union president Kanhaiya Kumar on sedition charges for being present at an event on the campus where anti-India slogans were raised. Though the government is facing strident opposition criticism over the issue, Thursday's move reflects its resolve to adopt an aggressive posture on it.

The proposal for hoisting the national tricolour atop a 207-feet pole was put forward by Irani and unanimously endorsed by all the 46 Vice Chancellors, HRD officials said. She also put forth the proposal for hoisting the first such flag at JNU, which too was backed by all the VCs, they said.

Officials in HRD Ministry said as per the resolution all the central universities, including JNU, will have to fly the tricolour and the decision was taken to "symbolise a strong and united India" in the institutions of higher education.

The fact that this move comes even while protests are raging at Jawaharlal Nehru University campus after the arrest of a student Kanhaiya Kumar for sedition is not a coincidence. In fact, the first institution where the flag will be unfurled will be JNU.

Indian Twitterati were pretty divided on the need for this step and took to the microblogging site to vent their feelings.

While it was not surprising to see Irani's fellow BJP leaders tweet their support, Congress MP Naveen Jindal's tweets were unexpected:


Of course, Bollywood personalities could not be left out of the debate:


Then came the sarcasm:


With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Feb 18, 2016 23:02:36 IST

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