Mumbai: The ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign which headlines the government’s Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav in the 75th year of India’s independence was to be called ‘Har Ghar Jhanda’, until filmmaker Kailash Surendranath suggested a modification to the Union culture ministry.
The campaign is a melodious salute to the Tricolour and people’s right to display it, and Kailash Surendranath had got the go-ahead to work on it only at the end of May this year.
“We were given a single-page brief to begin with, to create a campaign called ‘Har Ghar Jhanda’ for the ministry of culture,” said the man behind the iconic ‘Mile Sur Mera Tumhara’ campaign from the 1980s.
“Our first step was to suggest that the name be changed to ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’, which was accepted,” he continued. “Then we went ahead and presented our ideas for the campaign. Some other people were presenting as well, but we were given the mandate to create it.”
So when the Flag Code of India 2002 was amended on July 19, 2022, to allow every citizen, private organization or educational institution to display the Tricolour at all times on all days of the year irrespective of occasion, the filmmaker and his son Angadveer were racing against time to shoot the ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign ahead of its planned release on August 2, 2022, to coincide with the 146th birth anniversary of Pingali Venkayya, who designed the national flag.
With just two months to complete the film, the father and son divided between them the locations they had selected across the country and headed out with different teams to shoot in different directions.
“My mother Aarti Surendranath had the tough job of coordinating the mammoth exercise, getting the celebrities on board and working around their schedules, and also advising us on the aesthetics of the film,” said Angadveer, a budding filmmaker who has taken after his father. “Not just locations in India, we had to shoot with the cricketers and [javelin star] Neeraj Chopra in the UK as we couldn’t leave them out.”
Kailash Surendranath is happy and emotional about the response to the campaign since its launch. “The response to ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ has been superlative, on the culture ministry’s social media [handles], on our social media, on Union Home Minister Amit Shah’s social media… and it is also trending on Google Search.
“It is such a good idea to have a flag in every home,” he continued. “It gives young people the pride of being Indian and instils in them the josh of taking India forward. The flag must go deep into the subconscious of every citizen.”
The veteran filmmaker is aware that comparisons will be drawn with ‘Mile Sur Mera Tumhara’, but the first thing he did was to put the earlier campaign out of his head. “Har Ghar Tiranga is in an entirely new time and place and has a very different context,” he said.
Meanwhile, the team at Kailash Picture Company is busy with a few custom edits as ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ will soon be released on television, in cinemas and on other platforms.
The campaign can be viewed here:
TAKE A TIRANGA SELFIE
To amplify the ‘Har Ghar Tiranga’ campaign, the Union culture ministry has created the interactive website www.harghartiranga.com where citizens can pin a digital flag and upload selfies with it.
It also has step-by-step instructions on how to use the flag as a profile picture on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, and how to apply the ‘Tiranga’ filter on Stories and Reels.
The site gives contacts of leading suppliers of the national flag and offers downloadable assets, including an Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav selfie booth.