Centrepiece which was knocked down by wind yet to be reinstalled
A monument meant for paying respects to soldiers who lost their lives at war, the Kargil War Memorial has now become a mockery of what it was meant to represent. With some of its parts stolen and others broken off, the memorial is now a skeleton of what it was previously.
The war memorial was constructed by the government in 2001, at a cost of Rs. 30 lakh, two years after the conclusion of the war. The centrepiece of the memorial was a sculpture of a gun and a helmet, meant to signify the military victory. It all started when the brass gate at the entrance went missing a couple of months ago.
According to Suresh, who goes for a daily walk on the beach, a few months back, the gate on the memorial went missing and he went and spoke to the guards at the Chief Secretariat, but they seemed unaware of it until he pointed it out.
Now, the gun and helmet sculpture is also missing. They are currently in the custody of the Public Works Department, having been handed over by the Grand Bazaar Police Station.
According to Sub Inspector Sajith, the sculpture was handed over to the GB station by the guards outside the Chief Secretariat, around two years ago. It was knocked down due to strong winds. They had received it and immediately handed it over to the PWD.
According to the Chairman of the Ex-Servicemen Association and Member of Legislative Assembly Omsakthi Sekar, even though the issue has been brought up even in the Assembly and the Ex-Servicemen Association had approached the government, there is absolutely no maintenance. The Association had even offered to perform the maintenance, but, till date, the memorial is under the control of the government.
Twice or thrice a year, the association gets together and cleans the area, but apart from that there is no action whatsoever. For the past four years, the memorial has fallen into a state of disrepair, he said.
Keywords: Kargil War Memorial