SRINAGAR: Lieutenant Governor, Manoj Sinha on Wednesday attended the commemoration of the 75th year of Air Induction of Indian Army to evict Pakistan forces from Kashmir. The event was organized by Chinar Corps at Technical Airport Budgam.
Paying tributes to the martyrs of the October 1947 attack by the Pakistan army, the Lt Governor laid a floral wreath at the war memorial and also honoured the NoKs of ‘Saviours of Kashmir’.
Speaking on the occasion, the Lt Governor said that the historic Air landing Operation conducted by Indian Army & Air Force in face of the enemy and subsequent eviction of Pakistani forces was the first landmark military action of Independent India.
On this day, 75 years ago, the first Dakota aircraft with Lieutenant Colonel D.R. Rai and his warriors on board had reached Srinagar airport. The gallant actions of the Indian Army alongside the people of J&K turned the tide in favour of the Nation, he added.
“I salute the courage of the immortal heroes and saviours of Jammu Kashmir – Brigadier Rajinder Singh, Major Somnath Sharma, Lt Col Rai, Maqbool Sherwani, and all those great personalities who sacrificed their lives to save J&K from Pakistan Army’s invasion,” said the Lt Governor.
The new generation must be told about the barbaric atrocities perpetrated by Pakistan, killing of thousands of innocents. They must know the brutality executed by the neighboring country, also the biggest terror sponsor, the Lt Governor added.
Recalling the darkest hours of J&K’s history, the Lt Governor said that the Pakistan Army disguised as Pashtun Tribals on reaching Baramulla created havoc and rampaged the entire town, killed, raped and looted the innocents, burnt houses, hospitals and churches. People of all religions, whoever had survived, left their homes and took refuge in the mountains.
The 1947 generation of Srinagar heaved a sigh of relief when on the intervening night of November 4, the Pakistani army, marching towards the city, was gunned down by our brave soldiers near Trikulbal before reaching Srinagar.
Major Somnath Sharma, with a handful of soldiers fought bravely and attained martyrdom in defending Srinagar airport from being captured by the enemies. The bravery, patriotism with which our soldiers sacrificed their lives for the defense of Jammu and Kashmir is exemplary and inspirational for all, said the Lt Governor.
The Lt Governor also paid his humble tributes to the Maha Vir Chakra recipient Brigadier Rajinder Singh on his death anniversary. He sacrificed his life valiantly defending Jammu & Kashmir while fighting Pakistani invaders. His gallantry, indomitable spirit and significant contribution to uphold the unity and integrity of the motherland will continue to inspire generations to come, said the Lt Governor.
“The nation is celebrating Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav. It is our responsibility to pass on the legacy of valour and sacrifice of our brave-hearts who thwarted the nefarious designs of the enemies and protected the honour and integrity of our great nation,” the Lt Governor observed.
“I am proud of the Army and Security forces, carrying the great tradition of courage and valour to protect the motherland. Today, J&K is marching ahead towards peace, development and prosperity and it is a true reflection of the sheer grit and dedication of our brave security personnel”, the Lt Governor said.
Lieutenant General DP Pandey, GoC 15 Corps, in his address, threw light on the series of events that took place on this historic day. He paid homage to all the brave soldiers who were martyred in the October 1947 terror attack by Pakistan army.
Daredevil paratroopers of the Indian Army demonstrated a skydiving display to mark the occasion. A video clip and a drama performance depicting the events of Pakistan invasion, resilience of Kashmiri people, role of Maqbool Sherwani and Kashmiri women militia in defence of Kashmir was also showcased on the occasion.
Demonstration of insertion and extrication by Special Forces and maneuvers by Army Helicopters and Jets relived the memories of October 27, 1947.
Air Marshal Amit Dev, AOC-in-C Western Air Command; Dilbag Singh, DGP; Pandurang K. Pole; Divisional Commissioner Kashmir; Vijay Kumar, IGP Kashmir; Shahbaz Ahmad Mirza, DC Budgam; senior officials of Army, Air Force, Police and Civil Administration were present on the occasion.
Nazir Ahmad Khan, DDC Chairperson, Budgam; Dr Darakhshan Andrabi, Member, Central Waqf Council, and Chairperson, Waqf Development Committee of Union Ministry of Minority Affairs; Vikramaditya Singh, former Legislator and PRI members also attended the commemoration event.