Home Dehradun Rajnath Singh to inaugurate Shaurya Sthal War Memorial in Doon

Rajnath Singh to inaugurate Shaurya Sthal War Memorial in Doon

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By OUR STAFF REPORTER

DEHRADUN, 9 Jan: Uttarakhand has a rich tradition of service to the Nation through the personnel it contributes to the Armed Forces. The hill State is home to approximately 1.63 lakh veterans from the Army, Navy and Air Force and over 2,330 service personnel from the State have laid down their lives to defend the nation. To pay homage to this supreme sacrifice and the dedicated service of the Armed Forces, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will dedicate the Shaurya Sthal established, here, to the Armed Forces on Veterans’ Day, 14 January.

Located in Lower Cheerbagh in Dehradun Cantonment, astride the road from Hathibarkala to Rajbhawan, Shaurya Sthal is a breathtaking tribute to the valour and sacrifice of the Armed Forces personnel belonging to Uttarakhand. Shaurya Sthal was initially developed by the Uttarakhand War Memorial Trust, which unanimously decided to hand over its control to the Indian Army and abrogated the existing Memorandum of Understanding with Cantonment Board, Dehradun on 9 December, 2022.

On the occasion of Veterans’ Day, Raksha Mantri will address an Armed Forces Veterans’ Rally at Jaswant Ground in Dehradun Cantonment, to be attended by Veterans, Veer Naaris and their families. He will also launch an Adventure Sports website, ‘Soul of Steel Alpine Challenge’, a joint adventure sports initiative of the Indian Army and CLAW Global. To spread tourism to the border areas of the Hill State, the Raksha Mantri will flag off a car expedition from Dehradun to Ghanshali located in the Niti Valley.

The Shaurya Sthal has been designed to invoke pride and patriotism. Visitors can walk through the memorial along a path with granite slabs on either side. Engraved on these slabs are inspiring quotes from the scriptures. An imposing platform with seven granite pillars forms the core of this monument. On four pillars are etched the names of fallen heroes of Uttarakhand including 2317 from the Indian Army, 8 from the Indian Navy and 6 from the Indian Air Force.

Murals depicting fierce battles fought in Kargil during Operation Vijay are also depicted on a wall at the memorial. These murals were presented by India’s first Chief of Defence Staff, General Bipin Rawat.

Shaurya Sthal will be developed along the lines of memorial parks in Laungewala and Kargil. Similar to Laungewala, depiction of accounts of epic post-independence battles of the Garhwal, Kumaon and Gorkha Regiments, whose soldiers hail from Uttarakhand, will be highlighted. In the Cheer forest adjoining the Shaurya Sthal, a winding pathway – ‘Shaurya Path’ – is proposed to be created where busts of the gallant Ashok Chakra awardees will be placed bearing the stories of their valour.

Shaurya Gatha (narration of battle accounts), rendition of patriotic songs and inspiring poetry will be delivered through an audio system to evoke feelings of patriotism and pride.

Over the past few years, Shaurya Sthal has been developed by adding artefacts, models and display of ‘out of service’ weapons and equipment. It presently has one MiG-21 Air Frame, one Battleship model from the Navy, and two RCL Guns from the Army. A Vijayant Tank stands sentinel at the entrance of Shaurya Sthal and a statue of the Unknown Soldier designed by Gautam Pal recalls the sacrifice of the brave men and women in uniform.