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Pakistan: Presidential Flag

Last modified: 2001-09-22 by jonathan dixon
Keywords: pakistan | president | crescent: points to hoist | wreath: olive leaves |
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[Presidential Flag] by Joe McMillan

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The presidential flag is solid green with a device [a star and crescent surrounded by olive branches with the name Pakistan at the bottom] centered in gold.
Source: Album des Pavillons (2000)
Joe McMillan, 19 February 2001

This version was confirmed in:

  • a letter dated 15 Mar 1999 from ambafrance Islamabad
  • a letter dated 5 Feb 1999 from naval attaché of Pakistan in Paris
  • a letter dated 04 Sep 1989 from President's officer on special duty to the Flag Institute (variant with white strip at the hoist)
Armand Noel du Payrat, 22 February 2001

Since the state name is written in Arabic letters, there sould be a small gap exectly in the top of the "horns" since both "alif"'s souldn't be connected with the preceding letter.
Dov Gutterman, 25 February 2001

I do not know what is acceptable when 'stylising' Arabic/Urdu writing, that is why I asked - but I have seen examples where 'Pakistan' has been made to look more symmetrical for a design. Also, in the World Cup Cricket, the symbol on Pakistan's cricket emblem (I don't know what it is) had dots added to it to make it look like a (very) stylised version of the word 'Pakistan' - not that dissimilar to that on the presidential flag image. This might be more a case of an existing symbol being modified rather that the writing being stylised, but it may be relevant.
Jonathan Dixon, March 2000

Another point is where the crescent in the device should point: to the fly-top or towards the hoist-top. FTAAATW, Pedersen (1980) - Moussault's lexicon van vlaggen en wapens and FAATW 1981 (Dutch Ed.) have it pointing to the flytop, but Crampton, 'The World of Flags', 1990 has the crescent pointing to the hoisttop, saying

The crescent and star face upward and to the hoist, as on the national arms.
It is possible that someone assumed that the crescent should point into the same direction as the crescent on the national flag and that others duplicated that error - but Crampton doesn't point at that.
Jarig Bakker, 15 Dec 1999

And yet one more point under doubt is whether the star is upright (as in Barraclough) or pointing in the same direction as the crescent (as in Crampton)
Santiago Dotor, 16 Dec 1999

The confusion over which way the crescent points on the presidential flag (either one) might be to do with earlier confusion about right-left writing and which side is the fly/hoist. Even if it isn't the explanation, it does raise the question of whether the name is reversed on the obverse.
Jonathan Dixon, 06 Mar 2000


[Presidential Flag of Pakistan] by Calvin Paige Herring

DK Ultimate Pocket Book (1997, p.197) shows a flag similar to the national flag with the yellow emblem, but with the crescent and star mirrored (crescent facing the hoist - I suppose erroneously), and labels it "the President's flag".

Ivan Sache 27 Jun 1999

History of the Flag

[Old Presidential Flag of Pakistan] by Ivan Sache, using emblem by Calvin Paige Herring

The first flag was blue with emblem. The emblem was slightly modified 23 March 1956. The image posted by Paige seems to be the presidential flag adopted 8 February 1967 (the word "Pakistan" was writen in urdu and bengali, but 15 August 1973 the bengali letters were supressed). See Flagmaster 63.

Jaume Ollé, 17 May 1998

Album des Pavillons (1995, p. 200-201) shows the yellow emblem on a plain dark blue field, described by Jaume as the old President's flag

Ivan Sache, 27 Jun 1999

According to my sources the flag was the presidential one adopted on 23 March 1956. Probably in the 1960s the country name in Bengali was added (to the name in Urdu). Was in use until 8 February 1967. At this time it was changed to a national flag pattern but with the same golden emblem as before in the centre of the green part (the half moon pointed to the hoist). The name in the lower part says "Pakistan" and was written in Urdu and Bengali. On 15 August 1973 the Bengali word was removed (source Flagmaster 63). I don't have any news of a readoption of the old pattern.

Jaume Ollé, 29 Jun 1999

Barraclough states on the presidential flag:

The President's flag has a royal blue field, nine feet by six feet six inches; superimposed in the centre thereof, in gold, the crescent and star between two olive branches with the word Pakistan, in Pakistani [Urdu] script.
The same flag is in FTAAATW, (lighter blue); Pedersen (1980) - Moussault's lexicon van vlaggen en wapens - 'Urdu-script';FAATW 1981 (Dutch Ed.), but Crampton, 'The World of Flags', 1990 has a different image: crescent is pointing to the hoisttop:
The President's flag was originally blue with a gold emblem in the centre, consisting of a crescent and star within a wreath of olive leaves, with the name 'Pakistan' below in Urdu. This was altered to a design like the national flag, but with the same emblem in place of the crescent and star on February 1967; the name of the country was also included in Bengali. The Bengali title was removed on 15 August 1973, following the secession of Bangladesh. The crescent and star face upward and to the hoist, as on the national arms.
The curious thing is that in Crampton's reasoning Barraclough (1971) should have the presidential flag with 'Pakistan' in Urdu and Bengali, but it is only in Urdu there - that is the post-1973 flag; it seems doubtful that there ever was an 'Urdu and Bengali' presidential flag.
Jarig Bakker, 15 Dec 1999

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