Chandigarh: The sacrifices made by the Indian soldiers in were remembered on Rezang La Day here on Saturday.
In the Battle of Rezang La against the Chinese army on November 18 in 1962, 120 Indian soldiers of the Charlie Company of 13 Kumaon Regiment defended the Rezang pass in the strategically important location near the Chushul airfield in Ladakh. In the action, 114 Indian soldiers lost their lives, while more than 1,000 Chinese troops were also killed.
Punjab Governor Banwarilal Purohit, while paying tribute to the martyrs, stressed on the need to make NCC compulsory in all schools.
He was the chief guest at the programme, which was organised by Suvichar, a think-tank. General (retd.) V.P. Malik was the guest of honour.
Param Vir Chakra awardees, honorary Capt (retd) Bana Singh and Sub-Major Sanjay Kumar, were felicitated on the occasion. They narrated the indomitable courage displayed by the Indian soldiers during the war.
Purohit said, “I take pride in saluting the soldiers of Charlie Company of 13 Kumaon Regiment who fought the Chinese against all odds. It was a saga of unparalleled bravery as Major Shaitan Singh and his soldiers made the supreme sacrifice, fighting one of the world’s rarest ‘last man, last bullet’ battles.
“We have been listening to bravery stories of our martyrs and it’s a privilege for us to have two Param Vir Chakra awardees among us. I myself wanted to join the Indian Air Force, but due to some reason could not clear the medical test.”
He added that today the defence forces are most well-equipped and also stressed on the fact that due to paucity of funds, not all schools have NCC.
“It should be made compulsory for all students,” the Governor said.
Gen Malik said it was a privilege to have the parents of Capt Vikram Batra here on the occasion. He recalled the significance of the Rezang La Day and said the soldiers set an example of bravery and leadership for the entire world.
Stating that such bravehearts are a source of inspiration for the entire nation, Malik said, “It is our responsibility to remember all those who have sacrificed their lives for the nation.”