1971 war reflects folly of Partition: Rajnath

Defence Minister pays tribute to CDS Rawat at event to mark 51 years since liberation of Bangladesh

Updated - December 12, 2021 10:42 pm IST

Published - December 12, 2021 03:42 pm IST - New Delhi

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh speaks during the inauguration of the 'Swarnim Vijay Parv', at India Gate in New Delhi on December 12, 2021.

Defence Minister Rajnath Singh speaks during the inauguration of the 'Swarnim Vijay Parv', at India Gate in New Delhi on December 12, 2021.

The 1971 war tells us that the Partition of India on the basis of religion was a “historic mistake” and Pakistan was born in the name of one religion but it could not remain one, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh said on Sunday.

The Minister was speaking at the inauguration of the ‘Swarnim Vijay Parv’ commemorating 50 years of the 1971 Liberation War of Bangladesh at India Gate lawns in the national capital.

“After the defeat of 1971, it is continuously fighting a proxy war. Pakistan wants to disrupt peace in India by promoting terrorism and other anti-India activities. The Indian forces had foiled their plans in 1971 and work to eliminate terrorism from its root is in underway,” he said. “We have won in a direct war and the victory will be ours in indirect war as well.”

Mr. Singh also paid tributes to the country’s first Chief of Defence Staff Gen. Bipin Rawat, who was killed in a helicopter crash last week. The Parv marks the culmination of year-long celebrations commemorating the 1971 war.

Terming the 1971 war as among the most decisive wars in the world after the two World Wars in the 20th century, Mr. Singh said the war was a classic example of India’s morals and democratic traditions.

“It will be rarely seen in history that after defeating another country in a war, a country does not impose its dominance, but hands over power to its political representative. India did this, because it is a part of our culture. India has never invaded any country, nor has it ever captured an inch of land of any other country,” he said.

Mr. Singh described the 1971 war as a shining example of jointness and integration among the three services, underlining the importance of planning, training and fighting together. Stating that from procurement to production, all efforts are being made to make the forces more capable, efficient and self-reliant, Mr. Singh said, “Our aim is to keep our armed forces ready for any eventuality.”

The Minister recalled the determination, coordination and valour of the Indian armed forces during the war.

Indian armed forces supported the Muktibahini, helped lakhs of refugees and prevented any kind of aggression from western and northern sector, he said. “They ensured that the credibility of India’s commitment towards peace, justice and humanity in the world community is maintained.”

A series cultural events and performances have been planned over the next two days. War movies and a grand battle exhibition depicting major operations on the Eastern and Western Front of the 1971 war will also be displayed, the Defence Ministry said.

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