Asia, Countries, Ireland

Indialive alive oh

Happy 75th India and a special Indialive alive oh from Dublin to mark the part the Irish played in your story.

It’s not just the shared colours of the flags that they have in common.

So to celebrate Indiapendence with these fun facts on the feckers and the fakirs.

It’s a common misconception that the Irish flag informed the Indian drape.

The Irish green, white and orange flag dates back to 1848 which you’ll remember from your history books as The Year of Revolutions in Europe.

It was then that a group of French women gifted a Tricolore of vertical green, white and orange to Young Irelander Thomas Meagher.

The Irish Tricolore

Plain talking: The Irish flag

Ireland green for the Catholic tradition, orange for the Protestant and white for peace.

Wear the colours: India

The Indian cloth though sharing the colours is, of course, horizontal, and it has to be of khadi, a hand-spun fabric popularised by Gandhi.

The saffron green stands for courage, the white for inclusivity to other religions (Christians), green for the land.

And a central blue wheel for self-reliance.

Flagging it up

Sister act: Nivedita

Of course it wasn’t the first proposed Indian flag, that was the brainchild of Sister Nivedita, aka Margaret Noble, of Co. Tyrone.

The converted Hindu nun had suggested a red flag with a yellow inset depicting a thunderbolt and a white lotus.

She was rather more successful in raising women’s rights in her new country.

The Irish, in truth, have always been there for the Indians.

Just call me Dev

Indy Eamonn: De Valera

And those two titans of anti-imperialism, Éamonn De Valera and Mahatma Gandhi were great admirers of each other.

With Dev flying the flag for India in his rallying speech in New York: ‘We of Ireland and you of India must each of us endeavour.

‘Both as separate peoples and in combination to rid ourselves of the vampire that is fattening on our blood.’

Sandals in the wind: Gandhi

While he was presented with a green/white/orange tricolour in San Francisco by Gopal Singh.

Gopal being of the convicted Indo-Irish-German (1915) conspirators (get your history books out).

Throw in too the impact of Cork hunger striker Terence McSwinney from 1929 on future Indian non-aggressive activism.

Stars of India

Ya Bhutto: The Bhuttos

Future Indian leaders, Rahul Gandhi among them had Irish ideals running through them.

While remembering too that today is Pakistan Independence Day as well, Benazir Bhutto and Pervez Musharaf were both educated by Irish orders.

And Gandhi’s granddaughter Tara (and that’s Irish) also spoke up for Bobby Sands in Belfast.

When she told the audience: ‘It remains the same iridescent love today as I proceed on my 86th year of my life.

‘How inspiring to be in the land of Seamus Heaney and Bobby Sands.’

The Bloody Partitions

The hotseat awaits: Leo Varadkar


Now the friendship has extended to a half-Indian Leo Varadkar ascending to the station of Taoiseach which he will regain this December.

Of course the biggest similarity between the island of Ireland and the Indian Subcontinent, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh is they have both suffered partition.

Because of the cack-handedness of the British Empire under the flag commonly known in Ireland as the ‘butcher’s apron.’



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