By OUR STAFF REPORTER
DEHRADUN, 16 Dec: Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat said that 16 December was a historic day. In just 13 days, 93,000 soldiers of the Pakistani Army had to surrender before the courage of Indian soldiers.
The Chief Minister was addressing a programme organised in the memory of the martyrs of the 1971 Indo-Pak War at Defence Colony, here, today. The Chief Minister said the morale of Pakistani soldiers was broken by the bravery of Indian soldiers. School and college students needed to be told about the bravery and sacrifice of the Indian Armed Forces. He said students would be told about this glorious history on Vijay Diwas in schools from next year.
He added that, along with being Dev Bhoomi, Uttarakhand was also Veer Bhoomi. Uttarakhand was located on two international borders but, till today, no anti-national elements could dare to enter. There was reverence for the soldiers in the state government. There were clear instructions to the authorities that the problems of the soldiers ought to be resolved on priority basis. For this, an ADM level officer had been made nodal officer in each district. He promised to set up a grand memorial dedicated to the Armed Forces in the state, which would signify their glorious history.
Union Minister of State for External Affairs Gen VK Singh said Vijay Diwas recalled the bravery and sacrifice of the Armed Forces. Achieving such a big victory in just 13 days and creating a separate country, of course, was a matter of pride for the nation. Even today, enemies were engaged in direct and indirect way against the country and, at such a time, Indians needed to recognise their strength and unite in response. Every Indian was with the families of martyred soldiers. A society and country that did not respect soldiers faced collapse. The Armed Forces kept the country united.
Chief Minister Rawat and Gen VK Singh also felicitated the Veer Naaris, gallantry medal recipients and ex-servicemen at the programme. Minister of State for Higher Education Dr Dhan Singh Rawat, Member of Parliament Mala Raj Laxmi Shah, MLA Umesh Sharma ‘Kau’, MLA Vinod Chamoli, Mayor Sunil Uniyal ‘Gama’, Lt Gen OP Kaushik (Retd), Lt Gen Anand Swaroop (Retd), etc., were present at the programme.
Earlier, on the occasion of Vijay Diwas, Chief Minister Rawat and Union Minister of State for External Affairs Gen VK Singh (Retd) paid rich tribute to the brave martyrs and laid wreaths at the Martyrs’ Memorial in Gandhi Park.
By OUR STAFF REPORTER