On October 8, 2023, a historic moment unfolded in the history of the Indian Air Force (IAF) as the Chief of Air Staff unveiled the new IAF ensign. This marks a significant event that reaffirms the values of the Indian Air Force.
The original Royal Indian Air Force (RIAF) Ensign featured the Union Jack in the upper left canton and the RIAF roundel (Red, White & Blue) on the fly side. After Independence, the Indian Air Force ensign was created by replacing the Union Jack with the Indian tricolor and the RAF roundels with the IAF tricolor roundel in the lower right canton.
The new IAF ensign has been designed to better reflect the values of the Indian Air Force. A notable addition is the inclusion of the Air Force Crest in the top right corner of the ensign, towards the fly side.
The IAF Crest features the national symbol, the Ashoka lion, positioned at the top, with the words “सत्यमेव जयते” in Devanagari below it. Below the Ashoka lion is a Himalayan eagle with its wings spread, symbolizing the fighting qualities of the IAF. A light blue ring encircles the Himalayan eagle, with the words “भारतीय वायु सेना” (Indian Air Force) inscribed. The motto of the IAF, “नभः स्पृशं दीप्तम्,” is inscribed below the Himalayan eagle in golden Devanagari. The IAF motto, derived from verse 24, Chapter 11 of the Bhagavad Gita, translates to “Radiant Thou Touchest Heaven” or, in other words, “Touching the sky with Glory.” This motto reflects the aspiration and commitment of the Indian Air Force to achieve excellence and glory in its endeavors.