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A memorial for martyrs

india Updated: Sep 14, 2011 01:18 IST
Sanjeev K Ahuja

The city will soon to have a memorial in the honour of the 114 martyrs who fought the historic battle of Rezang La pass with Chinese soldiers in 1962.

On September 16, Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda will lay the foundation stone for the construction of the memorial at the Palam Vihar roundabout.

It is scheduled to be inaugurated on November 18, 2012, the 50th anniversary of the historic battle.

The soldiers who hailed from Ahirwal belt — Southern Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan — sacrificed their lives on November 18, 1962, battling with the Chinese army at an altitude of 18,000 feet, about 19 miles south of Chushul valley in Ladakh.

The Indian unit was led by Maj Shaitan Singh, who was conferred Param Vir Chakra posthumously.

The memorial will have the names of all the martyrs of the 13 Kumaon engraved on its central pillar. It will also have the replica of canon guns made of concrete on each of the four corners, said sculptor Naresh Verma, who has been roped in to design the monument.

The construction of the memorial was approved in 2008 by the then Haryana governor AR Kidwai after the demand made by the Rezang La Shahidi Samaroh Samiti and other organisations.

Kidwai also accepted their demands to name the circle between Palam Vihar and Sector 23 as Rezang La Chowk and the road between Gurgaon railway station and Bijwasan on Haryana-Delhi border as Rezang La Marg.

According to Capt DD Saklani, a member of the battalion, their can be no better epitaph for the men who fought and died at Rezang La. In recognition of the sacrifices of Veer Ahirs, the government conferred the unit with the Battle Honour and the Theatre Honour.