45TH VIJAY DIWAS CELEBRATED AT
NATIONAL WAR MEMORIAL SOUTHERN COMMAND, PUNE
Vijay Diwas 2016 is being celebrated with effect from 16 Dec to 18 Dec 2016 with the customary pomp and fervor at National War Memorial, Southern Command, Pune. This day marks the splendid victory achieved by India over Pakistan 45 years ago. The “GREATEST VICTORY EVER” saw the emergence of Bangladesh as an independent nation and India rose as a regional power to reckon with. With this decisive victory over a formidable opponent the Armed Forces of India once again affirmed themselves as a strong component of National power.
The 1971 Indo Pak war began with Pakistan launching pre-emptive air strikes against 11 Indian airbases on 03 Dec 1971. The war was forced upon due to widespread genocide of people of East Pakistan carried out by an oppressive military regime under General Yahya Khan of Pakistan. The war, which was short and intense, was fought on both Eastern and Western fronts. The 13 day war resulted in a complete surrender of Pakistani forces and the creation of Bangladesh. The Indian Armed Forces reigned supreme over the Pakistani military in the battle field. During the war, Southern Command valiantly defended the borders of the nation against any action by Pakistan. The notable battles which were fought in the area of responsibility of the Southern Army included the famous battle of Longewala where Pakistan’s armoured forces were destroyed by resolute Indian troops The raid on Pakistani town of Chachro carried out by soldiers of the renowned 10 Para Commando Battalion led by Lt Col (Later Brig) Bhawani Singh, the erstwhile ruler of Jodhpur state was another famous military action. These battles have gone down the pages of history as fine examples of grit, determination and bravery of our soldiers.
A wreath laying ceremony was conducted to pay homage to brave soldiers, airmen and sailors of the Indian Armed Forces who did not think twice before laying down their lives to protect the sovereignty and freedom of our great nation. The solemn ceremony was a token of remembrance for these brave sons of India who made the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty. A number of senior serving and retired officers and JCOs/OR attended the function and paid their tributes. Homage was also paid by senior civil officers and prominent citizens of Pune.
The memorial service which had the military band in attendance, included rendition of patriotic songs by children from various schools and prayers by the religious teachers of the Armed Forces to pay homage to the brave souls who made the supreme sacrifice while defending India. Thereafter wreaths were laid by representatives of retired and serving soldiers. The final wreath was laid by Lt Gen PM Hariz, AVSM, SM, VSM General Officer Commanding-in-Chief Southern Command. The silence observed by all present echoed skywards to the martyrs of this great nation as an appropriate tribute to their steely resolve to defend India at all costs.
The event concluded with an interaction over tea by all attendees in the Museum lawns, adjacent to the National War Memorial. A candle light ceremony was organized by citizen groups of Pune during the evening.