The Karnataka government wants to make the state's unofficial flag official. Photo: NDTV

Karnataka is examining the possibility of adopting a separate state flag, according to media reports. A nine-member panel has been established to study the legalities, officials said on Tuesday.

Jammu and Kashmir, which has special powers under Article 370 of the Constitution, is currently the only state with a separate flag.  The central government is also believed to be considering allowing Nagaland to have a separate flag under a treaty that is expected to be signed with the National Socialist Council of Nagalim (I-M).

Karnataka already has an unofficial red-and-yellow flag, a symbol of Kannada pride that is used for cultural events.

The move by Karnataka’s Congress government comes amid growing public anger over the central government’s alleged attempts to impose Hindi on the state’s Kannada-speaking people.

A legal expert told the Hindustan Times that there was no legal obstacle to adopting an official state flag.

“There is no provision either in the Constitution or in the Flag Code that prohibits a state from having a separate official flag,” said Alok Prasana Kumar, a Bangalore-based lawyer who has practiced at the Supreme Court.