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An emblem is described as “a heraldic instrument or symbolic object as a unique insignia of a nation, organization, or family”. The National Emblem of a nation is a seal that is earmarked for official purposes and orders the highest admiration and loyalty. A nation considers emblem as, it is a symbol of power and signifies the foundation of its constitutional values. The Indian National Emblem was accepted on 26 January 1950 by Madhav Sawhney.
National Emblem of India is a representative seal of the Republic of India that is adapted from the Lion Capital of Ashoka Pillar situated in Sarnath, Uttar Pradesh. India adopted it as the State Emblem on 26th January 1950. The motto of the Indian National Emblem is ‘Satyamev Jayate’ or ‘Truth Alone Triumphs.’
National Emblem is the symbol of authority and is present in all the official communications of the government.
The history behind the National Emblem’s inspiration dates back to the 3rd Century BC. The third Mauryan Emperor, Ashoka was a great conqueror and he established the first empire in India. Emperor Ashoka embraced Buddhism after witnessing the continous bloodshed. Thereafter, instead of conquests and wars, he made non-violence, spiritualism, compassion and peaceful co-existence the cornerstones of his administration. He erected a number of sculptures and stone carvings throughout his kingdom to preach the tenets of Buddhism. The Lion Capital was erected by Mauryan Emperor Ashoka during the year 250 BC to mark the spot where Buddha imparted his knowledge of Dharma to his five disciples. Many such other pillars were erected by the Emperor but most of them contain a single animal on top.
The pillar had originally sunk into the ground and wasn’t visible. German-born civil engineer Friedrich Oscar Oertel started excavation of the area following the accounts of Chinese travellers during the medieval age. He unearthed the Ashoka Pillar of Sarnath in March 1905 and the whole pillar was found in three sections. The topmost Lion Capital was found intact and is currently displayed in the Sarnath Museum.
Facts about National Emblem of India
- The Ashoka pillar, erected by Emperor Ashoka, has four lions seated back to back which imply power, courage, confidence and pride.
- Other animals demonstrated on the pillar are horse, bull, elephant, and lion.
- The elephant denotes Buddha’s outset (the dream of a white elephant entering her womb dreamt by Buddha’s mother at the time of Buddha’s conception).
- The bull symbolizes Zodiac sign of Buddha- Taurus.
- The horse signifies Buddha’s horse, which he rode at the time of departing from the citadel.
- The lion indicates enlightenment.
- All the Ashoka Pillars were carved by craftsmen from the same area using stone from Chunar and Mathura.
- Each pillar is around 40 to 50 feet in height, and weighing up to 50 tons each, were pulled to where they were raised.
- Only six pillars with animal capitals and nineteen pillars persist with inscriptions.
- The engravings on the pillars described proclamations about morality grounded on Buddhist doctrines.
- The slogan ‘Satyameva Jayate’- “The Truth Alone Triumphs” is engraved below the National Emblem.
- Slogan ‘Satyameva Jayate’ is a quote from the Mundaka Upanishad, the closing part of the holy Hindu Vedas.
- National Emblem is the official seal of the President of India and Central and State Governments and an inevitable part of the official letterhead of the Government of India.
- National Emblem is a part of all Indian currency and the National Passport of the Republic of India.
- In the two-dimensional representation of the emblem on the original copy of Indian Constitution, the fourth lion was left out.
- Indian Police Service Officers wear the state emblem on their caps.
- Members of Parliament (MPs) can also use the state emblem on their letterheads and visiting cards.
- There is a punishment of imprisonment of up to two years or a fine of up to INR 2000 if someone violates the law concerning the usage of the National Emblem.
- Dinanath Bhargava is believed to visit Alipore Zoo in Kolkata to see a lion before he depicts the same on paper.
- The National Emblem can be displayed in the following public buildings:
- Rashtrapati Bhawan
- Parliament House
- Supreme Court
- Central Secretariat buildings
- Raj Bhawan or Raj Niwas
- State Legislature
- High Courts
- Secretariat buildings of the States or the Union territories
- Premises of India’s Diplomatic Mission abroad
- Residences of Heads of Missions in the countries of their accreditation
- At the entrance doors of buildings occupied by India’s Consulates abroad
Q 1. When was the Indian National Emblem adopted?
- January 26, 1950
- January 26, 1947
- January 26, 1949
- January 21, 1950
Ans: a. January 26, 1950
Q 2. What do the Satyameva Jayate on the emblem mean?
- Truth will live on
- Only truth prevails
- Truth will Triumph
- Truth will live on
Ans: c. Truth will Triumph
Q 3. In National Emblem, how many Lions stand back to back?
Ans: b. 4
Q4. How many spokes are there in National Emblem?
Ans: d. 24
Q5. What does the Dharma Chakra mean?
- Wheel of law
- Wheel of pride
- Wheel of justice
- Wheel of courage
Ans: a. wheel of law
Q6. Name the animals present in our National Emblem.
- Lion, cat, horse, donkey
- Lion, Elephant, Bull, Horse
- Bull, Horse, Cat, Tiger
- Tiger, Elephant Lion, Horse
Ans: b. Lion, Elephant, Horse, Bull
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