Independence Day is soon going to be celebrated, with streets and houses being decorated with colorful lights and flags. Every year Pakistanis observe this day with enthusiasm, but after the Independence Day celebrations, no one seems to care for the flags that were so proudly flying from every house and pole. They are then found lying on the ground. I have even seen some people and children carelessly stepping on them. This is a great insult of our national flag, which is a symbol of our nation.

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I am always shocked to see flags lying on the ground, floating in rainwater and torn flags hanging everywhere. If we can’t care for them, why do we buy them? Do people realize that our flag is our identity and pride, and our attitude towards it shows our regard for our country?

In some cases, strings of small paper flags of the same design but different colors can be seen being sold in shops. Changing the colors means changing the meaning and significance of our national flag and this is wrong. This can be because many people also don’t know the meaning and significance of the colors and design of our flag. Our flag is green with a white crescent moon and five-rayed star at its center, and a vertical white stripe at the hoisting side.

The green color represents Islam and the Muslim majority in Pakistan and the white stripe represents the minorities. In the center, the crescent and star symbolize progress and light respectively. White and green are our identity, the symbol of peace and freedom, and changing its color is similar to changing our individuality.

The Pakistani flag with a crescent and star is sometimes made with unwanted additions in it, such as the Quaid’s portrait, the face of political leaders, etc. Slogans, greetings or other words and phrases are written on it. The worst is adding up of pictures of cartoon characters, which is disrespecting our flag.

Revive patriotism and respect the flag! Long live Pakistan!

MUHAMMAD MOIZ KHALIL,

Karachi.