English historian Trevor Royle revealed in his book The Last Days of the Raj that the final National Flag was made by Surayya Tayyabji – wife of Badruddin Tayyabji – an ICS officer in Prime Minister’s office in 1947 and niece of Sir Akbar Hydari of Hyderabad. According to Royle, the flag was designed and approved on July 17, 1947.
He wrote: “By one of those contradictions which run through India’s history, the national flag was designed by a Muslim, Badr-ud-Din Tyabji. Originally the tricolour was to have contained the spinning-wheel symbol ( charkha ) used by Gandhi but this was a party symbol, which Tyabji thought might strike the wrong note. After much persuasion Gandhi agreed to the wheel because the Emperor Ashoka was venerated by Hindu and Muslim alike. The flag which flew on Nehru’s car that night had been specially made by Tyabji’s wife.”
Surayya is the reason that saffron, white and green fill us with patriotic admiration and it is high time we gave her what she’s due – our deepest gratitude and appreciation.