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Poonam Singh

New Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday paid tributes to the fallen soldiers on the 50th anniversary of the 1971 India-Pakistan war.

President Kovind recalled the valour of Indian soldiers martyred in the 1971 war and said the nation is eternally indebted to them.

On Vijay Diwas, let us recall the valour of our soldiers that affirmed our nation's unwavering commitment to defend our sovereignty and protect human dignity. Their martyrdom in 1971 war had shown unparalleled grit & prowess of our forces. The nation is eternally indebted to them," Kovind tweeted.

Prime Minister Modi also lit the 'Swarnim Vijay Mashaal' from the eternal flame of the National War Memorial here, marking the beginning of the 50th anniversary year celebrations of India's victory over Pakistan in 1971.

Modi was joined by Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, the chief of defence staff and tri-service chiefs as he laid wreath and paid homage to the soldiers who made the supreme sacrifice for the country.


Four victory mashaals (flaming torches) will be carried to various parts of India, including to the villages of Param Vir Chakra and Maha Vir Chakra awardees of the 1971 war, the defence ministry has said.

"Soil from the villages of these awardees and from areas where major battles were fought in 1971 are being brought to the National War Memorial (NWM)," it said.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, who was also present at the venue, unveiled the logo for 'Swarnim Vijay Varsh' to mark the anniversary of the 1971 India-Pakistan war.

In a tweet, Rajnath Singh said, "I salute the tradition of valor and valor of the Indian Army. I remember the bravery of the brave soldiers who wrote a new legend in the 1971 war. Their sacrifice is a source of inspiration for all Indians. This country will always remember them."

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi also greeted people on the anniversary of India's victory over Pakistan in the 1971 war, noting it took place at a time when neighbouring countries used to recognise the mettle of the Indian prime minister and feared violating our borders.

"Greetings to people of the country on the celebration of India's historic victory over Pakistan in 1971 and salutations to the valour of our armed forces," Gandhi said in a tweet in Hindi.

"It took place at a time when India's neighbouring countries used to recognise the mettle of the Indian prime minister and feared violating the borders of our country," he said.

In December 1971, the Indian Armed Forces secured a decisive and historic Victory over the Pakistan Army, which led to creation of a Nation -- Bangladesh -- and also resulted in the largest military Surrender after World War-II.

As December 16 marks the 50th anniversary of the military victory, the nation will celebrate 'Swarnim Vijay Varsh' (golden victory year) through several events across the country, and it will continue for a year.

Various commemorative events will be conducted pan-India wherein war veterans will be felicitated, the statement said, adding that band displays, seminars, exhibitions, equipment displays, film festivals, conclaves and adventure activities will also be held.

(With Agency Inputs)

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