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Salutes galore as nation celebrates Army Day

Salutes galore as nation celebrates Army Day
Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat, Army chief General Manoj Mukund Narawane, chief of the Air Staff Air Chief Marshal RKS Bhadauria and Navy chief Admiral Karambir Singh pay tribute at the National War Memorial on Army Day on Wednesday.(ANI photo)

The army celebrates January 15 as Army Day every year as it was on this day that the first Indian general took charge of the Indian Army. General KM Cariappa (later Field Marshal) took charge to lead the Indian Army in 1949 from General Francis Butcher, the last British Commander-in-Chief of India.

Cariappa, fondly known as Kipper, was only 49 when he took charge of the army. He served as army chief for a full four years, retiring on January 16, 1953.

Today, leaders cutting across political lines are celebrating the Army Day, saluting the bravery and valour of the soldiers. The hashtag #ArmyDay is the top trend on Twitter.

“On Army Day today, I salute all valiant Indian Army personnel and recall with pride their indomitable spirit, valour and sacrifices in making India a safer place,” tweeted Defence minister Rajnath Singh. He added the hashtag #ArmyDay2020 to his tweet.

“My best wishes on Army Day to the brave soldiers, ex-servicemen and their families who sacrifice everything to protect the country. Jai Hind!” Congress leader Rahul Gandhi tweeted in Hindi.

“Indian Army is the epitome of commitment, discipline and patriotism. My salute to the brave women and men of the Army on #ArmyDay,” tweeted Union law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad.

“We are proud of you Indian Army! I salute the brave soldiers of the Indian Army who are a symbol of indomitable courage and bravery,” said Union minister Prakah Javadekar.

“Saluting the valour, courage & fortitude of all our soldiers on #ArmyDay. Let us come together and show our gratitude to the Indian Army for their selfless service to the nation and honour all those who sacrificed their lives for us,” Railways minister Piyush Goyal said on Twitter.

“I salute the indomitable spirit & bravery of the Indian Army on the occasion of #ArmyDay. I am proud to have been a part of this great institution. Happy to share a picture of my interaction with the troops of 3rd Sikh in Tibri Cantt in 2017,” said Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh. He also attached a picture of his interaction with the troops.

“Today is the day for us to take pledge for serving the country with dedication, a day of gratitude towards soldiers who brave all the odds and still remain unwavering in their commitment, and it’s a day dedicated to those soldiers who were martyred. ‘Jai Hind’,” Additional Directorate General of Public Information, the official Twitter handle of Indian Army, said in a tweet.

“On #ArmyDay in 1949 Field Marshal (then Lt Gen) KM Cariappa took over as the first Commander-in-Chief (C-in-C) of the Indian Army from the last British C-in-C of India. #ChinarCorps salutes the brave soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice to protect our great Nation,” Chinar Corps of the Indian Army said on Twitter. It also posted a video along with the tweet highlighting the bravery of the soldiers.

“Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan extends #ArmyDay Greetings to the personnel & veterans of Indian Army @adgpi. In his message, CM said that “They defend us in times of peace, times of war, and times of crisis. We appreciate their selfless service above & beyond the call of duty,” Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s office tweeted.

The Army Day parade, held at the Parade Ground in Delhi Cantonment, is one of the chief highlights of the celebrations. The army chief takes the salute and inspects the parade led by the General Officer Commanding, HQs Delhi Area. The other two service chiefs also attend the parade every year and take salute. This parade is also a part of the Republic Day parade.

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