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Red salute to Kargil war heroes

26th July is observed as “Kargil Vijay Diwas” as India successfully took command of the high posts which was lost to Pakistani intruders. The way in which the Indian Armed Forces fought the war and tried to ensure that it did not escalate into a nuclear conflict, has been acclaimed the world over.

India hopefully remembers the 400 plus martyrs for laying down their lives in the service of their nation. In the true spirit jawans have sacrificed their today for our tomorrow. It has been 17 years since the Kargil war, but the memory of the bloodshed remains fresh in the minds of the brave soldiers, who responded to the call of duty and defended the country’s borders, and their families. Kargil Vijay Diwas has been named after the success of Operation Vijay. As India celebrates Kargil Vijay Diwas and pays homage to martyrs of the war, it is time to recall the significant role of air power that actually tilted the balance in favour of Operation Vijay.

It is both a pride inducing moment and a prick in the hearts of the soldiers who valiantly fought for our nation. As India prepares to hold a memorial service for the martyrs, there are certain facts that we must all know about the historic day. With its significant war footage, Kargil was the first Indo-Pak War that impacted public opinion through mass media coverage.  Every patriotic Indian’s heart swells with pride at the bravery of our jawans in evicting Pakistani Northern Light Infantry and a few terrorists from the inhospitable Kargil heights. One hopes India’s strategic planners have built in and have planned  for more robust scenario’s to face inevitable, future threats. Kashmiri Pandits all over the world are grateful to these warriors and brave sons of the land for defending their homeland “Maej Kasheer” (Mother Kashmir).

There is an old saying in Punjabi’s Army, “Jine jeet nahi wekhi usay jeetna kaun sikhayega.” Loosely translated it means that if one has not seen victory, how can you teach ‘em to win a war. Its pride and pain for the soldiers as the nation celebrates the anniversary of the war victory against Pakistan. India continuously stepped up the attack against Pakistan and ended up recapturing two key positions in Batalik sector. Youth and students should draw inspiration from soldiers of the Indian Army who laid down their lives in the Kargil war in 1999 while safeguarding the country.

Vinod Chandrashekhar Dixit

(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)

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