New Delhi, Jan 14 (IANS) As a mark of respect to the selfless duty of the ex-servicemen and their sacrifices towards the nation and solidarity towards next of kin of the bravehearts, the seventh Armed Forces Veterans’ Day was celebrated across the country on Saturday.
The celebrations were held at nine locations, with Defence Minister Rajnath Singh presiding over the main function in Dehradun.
Addressing a huge rally of veterans as part of the event, the Minister expressed gratitude to the soldiers who have protected the sovereignty, unity and integrity of the country with unmatched courage and sacrifice and paid rich tributes to those who laid down their lives in the line of duty.
He commended the serving as well as retired armed forces personnel who ensure the country’s national security.
Rajnath Singh made special mention of the freedom fighters, soldiers and veterans of Uttarakhand, who have displayed indomitable courage and dedication to safeguard national interests.
“Heroes like Veer Chandra Singh Garhwali who supported the freedom fighters hailed from Uttarakhand. During the Kargil war, the soldiers of the state played a crucial role by standing strong against the enemy and protecting the country with unshakeable spirit,” he said.
Singh was of the view that pension, medical and other facilities being provided to the veterans are just a small token of the country’s respect towards the sacrifices and commitment they have made, assuring them of the government’s full support to their welfare.
“Every soldier of today is a respected veteran of tomorrow. It is our duty to ensure their well-being and satisfaction,” he said.
Earlier, at a solemn wreath laying ceremony, the Minister dedicated Shaurya Sthal in Dehradun Cantonment to the Armed Forces. Along with civil and military dignitaries as well as the veterans, Singh laid a wreath to honour the supreme sacrifice of brave armed forces personnel from Uttarakhand.
On the occasion, the event at Delhi was held at Manekshaw Centre, Delhi Cantt which was attended by the three service chiefs, CISC and secretary, Ex-Servicemen Welfare along with other senior officers of the armed forces.
Speaking on the occasion, the three service chiefs highlighted the important welfare measures undertaken by various welfare departments under the veterans’ vertical of armed forces.
The service chiefs highlighted the recognition of the selfless service rendered by the veterans in nation building.
The “We for Veterans” anthem was played at all public places as an ode to the veterans.