Kolkata (West Bengal) [India], December 6 (ANI): The Eastern Command on Saturday hosted a curtain raiser event for Vijay Diwas (Victory Day) at their headquarters in Fort William, Kolkata, to mark India's victory in liberating Bangladesh from Pakistan almost 50 years ago.
The event was addressed by Toufique Hasan, Bangladesh Deputy High Commissioner, and Major General V Sreehari, SC, MGGS, Eastern Command.
Vijay Diwas is celebrated every year on December 16 to mark India's triumph in liberating Bangladesh from Pakistan in 1971.
While speaking to the media, Hasan thanked the Eastern Command for the invitation and informed that a 30-member Bangladeshi delegation would be coming to attend the victory celebrations from December 14 to 18.
"50 years back, we got our long-cherished independence after a nine-month bloody war, and we got all of our support from the Government of India, their moral and diplomatic support, their material support. They also gave us shelter, as around 1 crore people came here from Bangladesh during that time. I really feel proud that as I am serving here in the Kolkata mission as the Bangladesh High Commissioner, which is the first Bangladesh mission abroad" he said.
He recalled the services of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, known as the 'Father of the Nation' of Bangladesh, and paid tributes to the freedom fighters who laid down their lives in the war against Pakistan.
The Bangladesh deputy high commissioner also highlighted the significance of the Eastern Command Headquarters, saying that it had a lot of historic attachment and is like a heritage building for Bangladesh.
Meanwhile, emphasising on the historic significance of the war, Sreehari said that it was a very good example of people's aspirations and Indian support with decisive military action which led to the birth of a new nation.
"The credit of the victory must be shared equally by the people of Bangladesh and the Armed Forces. The Vijay Diwas is a solemn occasion where we remember the sacrifices of the Armed Forces, the Mukti Bahini (Bangladeshi freedom fighters) as well as the people of Bangladesh," he said.
He further lauded the efforts of the Mukti Bahini who played a pivotal role in driving out the Pakistani forces from their land, as well as providing invaluable information regarding the Pakistani forces' deployment, disposition and terrain.
Sreehari also appreciated the support of the media to the Indian Army, saying it played an encouraging and constructive role and informed that the Eastern Command will host 30 Mukti Joddhas and six members of the Bangladesh Defense Forces.
In one of the fastest and shortest campaigns of military history, a new nation was born as a result of the swift campaign undertaken by the Indian Army.
After facing defeat in the 1971 war, the then Army Chief of Pakistan General Amir Abdullah Khan Niazi, along with his 93,000 troops, surrendered to allied forces which also comprised of Indian Army personnel. (ANI)