Karthikeyan will not sport Indian Tricolor

Narain Karthikeyan cannot have the colours he wants on his helmet, but it’s not the sponsors or the team forcing this upon him, but the government of India! The 28-year old who is India’s first Formula One driver, is gearing up for his debut in Melbourne on March 6th, was a victim of a law brought into custom in 2002 by the Indian Government.

On January 26th, 2002, the flag code of India was changed, allowing citizens to fly their flags with pride on any day, at any time. Yet, it was also decreed that the flag and/or tricolours couldn’t “be used for communal gains, drapery, and clothing”. This was also the case for the Indian Cricket team who were also forced to change their colours of their uniforms as they came in direct conflict with the new laws.

During testing, Narain had worn a helmet proudly showing the tricolours of his native country, and is now under pressure to change it. He reluctantly agreed to change his design stating, "(It's) the government's loss. We're only doing the country proud. I can probably sell that helmet space to sponsors and make a lot of money, so it's their loss."


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