Imphal, Jan 14:
Manipur joined the nation in commemorating the 8th Armed Forces Veterans Day today. The commemoration was held at the Banquet Hall of the 1st Battalion Manipur Rifles with Chief Minister N. Biren Singh as Chief Guest and Forest, Environment and Climate Change Minister Th. Biswajit Singh as President.
Armed Forces Veterans Day is observed every year on 14th January, taking the day of the retirement of Field Marshal K.M Cariappa, the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army, from his service. The day is also observed to pay respects to the ex-servicemen for their selfless duty & sacrifices and reinforce solidarity towards the Next of Kin of these brave hearts.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister N. Biren Singh stated that the Armed Forces Veterans Day is observed to honour those who had rendered selfless service for the security and safeguard of the motherland and had sacrificed their lives for the sake of the nation.
The Chief Minister appreciated the Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his initiative to commemorate the Armed Forces Veterans Day every year since 2017, adding that the State is also observing the day with much participation this year.
Expressing proud feeling that the State has many veterans, he stated that the State has the highest number of officers serving in the armed forces in terms of per capita. He also mentioned with honour that many Manipuris are presently serving the nation working in the armed forces.
Mentioning the welfare initiatives taken up by the State Government for the personnel who had served in the armed forces, N. Biren informed that 5 percent reservation had been made for the ex servicemen in State Government job’s recruitment and further an age relaxation of 5 years had been availed for appearing in job recruitment through Manipur Public Service Commission.
Further stating that the State had so far produced two Army Officers of the rank of Lieutenant Generals, despite its small population, he expressed proud feeling of being a Manipuri. Recalling the valour and sacrifice made by army officers from the State like Major Laishram Jyotin Singh and Major Bob Khathing, the Chief Minister announced that the State Government is looking for a suitable site for construction of a memorial for Indian Army in recognition of the sacrifice made by them for the security of the country and added that an amount of Rs. 3 crore had been earmarked for the same. He assured that the construction of the same would be completed before the Armed Forces Veterans Day next year.
Concluding his speech, he maintained that the country has developed and become stronger in different sectors under the leadership of the Prime Minister and appealed to the public to stand together against any forces who try to disintegrate the unity of the State and the Country.
Delivering his presidential speech, Minister Th. Biswajit Singh stated that the observance of the Armed Forces Veterans Day is very necessary, considering the sacrifices made by many brave hearts for the security of the country. He continued that Manipur, though a small state with small population, has produced many brave personnel who have been serving or served in the armed forces. He further mentioned that personnel of armed forces had always contributed to nation building till their last breath. As such, every year 14th January is being observed as the Armed Forces Veterans Day across the country, he added.
The Minister also spoke on the contribution of Field Marshal KM Cariappa. He also mentioned the hardships faced by the personnel of armed forces while rendering their duty to safeguard the country.
During the programme, the Chief Minister felicitated distinguished and gallantry award winning veterans and Veer Naris as a mark of respect for their service towards the nation.
The other highlight of the observation was the patriotic song presented by the artistes of Shri Shri Bal Mukunda Dev Government Music College, Imphal.
Speaker of Manipur Legislative Assembly, Th. Satyabrata, Ministers, Member of Parliament, MLAs, Ld. Advocate General, Chief Secretary, Security Advisor, Director General of Police, high ranking officials of Civil, Police, Army, Paramilitary forces and armed forces veterans also attended the programme among others.
The nation-wide celebration of the 8th Armed Forces Veterans’ Day was held in Thoubal District. Organised by the District Administration Thoubal, the Armed Forces Veterans’ of the district were felicitated today led by Deputy Commissioner, Ahanthem Subhash Singh, IAS, at the Conference Hall of Deputy Commissioner. Six (6) retired armed forces personnel and two (2) widows were feted with traditional Lengyan Phi.
Speaking during the interactive session, the Deputy Commissioner said that the function is organised to acknowledge the sacrifices of the veterans made on behalf of the nation and to honour their service in the military forces. Today is also a day to poignantly remember all the veterans who laid down their lives for the nation, he added.
President of Armed Forces Ex-Servicemen Welfare Association (AFESWA) Thoubal, Wing Commander (Retd.) Ak Debendro Singh urged the Deputy Commissioner to provide office room for the association. He also apprised the Deputy Commissioner about the yeoman service made by the members of the association at various relief camps in the district.
The function was attended by officials of District Administration, DLOs of various departments and staff of DC office Thoubal.
The Armed Forces Veterans’ Day is celebrated on 14th January every year as it was on this day in 1953 that the first Commander-in-Chief of the Indian Army Field Marshal KM Cariappa, who led the forces to victory in the 1947 war, formally retired from the Service. The day was first celebrated in 2016 and it is commemorated every year since by hosting such interactive events in the honour of the Ex-Servicemen.
The 8th Armed Forces Veterans Day was also observed at Mini-Secretariat, Conference Hall, DC Office, Churachandpur, today under the auspices of District Administration, Churachandpur. The day was observed in recognition of outstanding contribution and dedication to the service of the nation by the armed Forces.
Brig Michael D’Souza, Commander, 27 Sector, Assam Rifles, Tuibong, attended the occasion as Chief Guest. In his address, Brig Michel D’Souza said that the supreme sacrifices of the soldiers are remembered today to show appreciations to the role they played and their families for the security of the country and added that it is good time to look after the next of kind of the veterans Armed Forces families as they had an important role in the society.
Certificates of appreciations in recognition of outstanding contribution and dedication to the service of the nation were handed over to the next of kin of 10 Veteran Armed Forces families by the Chief Guest.
Speaking on the occasion, Dharun Kumar, IAS, DC Churachandpur said that one should recognize and honour the sacrifices made by the armed forces personnel who, despite having their own personal issues, are standing at the front for the safety of the country and all its citizens. He said that the sacrificial role of the security forces during the current unrest deserves due recognition and appreciation.
The solemn observance programme was attended amongst others by DC Churachandpur, Dharun Kumar, CO 1st IRB L Khongsai, Thangboi Gangte, MCS, ADC, Churachandpur, Veer Naris and DLOs.