Four months after the eternal flame of the Amar Jawan Jyoti under India Gate was “merged” with the immortal flame of the National War Memorial 100 meters away, the symbol of the fallen soldier at India Gate India was also moved to the National War Memorial.
In a ceremony led by the Chief of Defense Embedded in the President, Air Marshal BR Krishna of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CISC), the armed forces moved the inverted rifle and helmet, a memorial to soldiers who gave their lives in the 1971 war, from India Gate to the National War Memorial, which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in February 2019.
The Amar Jawan Jyoti had been moved just before Republic Day this year. It was the first time in 50 years since the establishment of the memorial after India’s victory over Pakistan in 1971, leading to the liberation of Bangladesh, that the eternal flame was extinguished under India Gate, which is itself a memorial to Indian soldiers who died in World War I and other military campaigns up to 1931.
The National War Memorial was built on an area of 40 acres near the India Gate and bears the names of over 26,000 Indian soldiers who have sacrificed their lives in various wars and operations for the country since independence.
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The inverted rifle and helmet, “which was the symbol of fallen soldiers of the 1971 war”, was moved “to Param Yodha Sthal at the National War Memorial and installed amid the busts of Param Vir Chakra laureates “, said the Ministry of Defense in a statement on Friday.
He said that with this ceremony, “the integration of the 1971 War Fallen Soldiers Memorial with the National War Memorial is complete”.
As part of the ceremony, a final salute was given and the CISC presented a wreath at India Gate, the statement said, adding that afterwards, “the inverted rifle and helmet were removed and carried to a ceremonial vehicle to Param Yodha Sthal and installed at a newly created monument.” The CISC was accompanied by the equivalents of the Army, Navy and Air Force Adjutant General.
In January, when the Eternal Flame was ‘merged’, MoD sources said it was to incorporate the war memorials, as visiting former politicians and dignitaries were to pay their respects at two different locations, and a times the war memorial commemorating all fallen soldiers. of independent India was built, a separate memorial for the soldiers who died in the 1971 war was not needed.
The memorial under India Gate was inaugurated by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, a month after the surrender of Pakistani forces on December 16.
The Amar Jawan Jyoti memorial had included a black marble plinth with an inverted L1A1 self-loading rifle with a bayonet, topped with a war helmet, which acts as the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, and four urns with burners, one or all of which were always lit constituting the eternal flame.