It was a feast in more ways than one at the Madras Regimental Centre (MRC) in Wellington near here on Saturday.

Having taken care of their routine before noon officers and jawans got together shortly after noon to herald Pongal in their own inimitable way.

In the process those present were offered not only a sumptuous spread topped with pongal but also a visual treat in the form of a cultural programme which culminated with an impressive display of the martial art ‘Kalarippayattu’.

Heading the dignitaries present was Lt. General B.V. Nair, Commandant of the prestigious Defence Services Staff College (DSSC).

Speaking to The Hindu, he said, “it is wonderful to be part of such an occasion” and added that in commemorating such occasions, “we are in no way different”.

The Commandant, MRC, Brigadier S.S. Jadhav pointed out that Army Day was also being celebrated at the Centre on Saturday and the Pongal had been made, ‘sweeter’ with the Army Chief General V.K. Singh recently honouring two battalions of the Madras Regiment out of four infantry battalions of the Indian Army with the Chief of Army Staff Unit citation in recognition of their operational proficiency in Counter Insurgency Operations.

Pointing out that the regiment, which was the oldest in the Indian Army had also received over the last couple of years a number of gallantry awards including one Kirti Chakra. six Shaurya Chakras and 25 Sena medals, he said that occasions like the Pongal celebrations are used by the members of the regiment to re-dedicate themselves for the cause of the country.

On Sunday there would be special pujas at the MRC temple and a rangoli competition.

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