12 army officers from England to pay tributes at Saragarhi memorial | punjab$amritsar | Hindustan Times
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12 army officers from England to pay tributes at Saragarhi memorial

The army officers will be visiting the memorial on September 12 to pay tributes to warriors of the famed battle on its anniversary.

punjab Updated: Sep 02, 2017 19:30 IST
Gaurav Sagar Bhaskar
The battle was fought on September 12, 1897 between soldiers of the British Indian Army and tribesmen in the North-West Frontier Province (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan).
The battle was fought on September 12, 1897 between soldiers of the British Indian Army and tribesmen in the North-West Frontier Province (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan).(HT File)

Twelve serving army officers from Britain will be visiting Saragarhi Memorial here on September 12 to pay tributes to warriors of the famed battle on its anniversary.

The battle was fought on September 12, 1897 between soldiers of the British Indian Army and tribesmen in the North-West Frontier Province (now Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Pakistan). The British Indian contingent had 21 soldiers of the 36 Sikhs (now 4th Battalion of the Sikh Regiment of Indian Army), who were stationed at an army post attacked by 10,000 Afghans, and were martyred.

The visiting British Army team will be led by Major General Duncon Francis Capps at the state-level martyrdom day observance to be presided over by Punjab finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal.

The Saragrahi Memorial Management Trust (SMMT), Ferozpeur, as per a notification issued by the governor, recently took over the historical memorial. The SMMT, led by Maj Gen Rajesh Kundra, general officer commanding (GOC), Golden Arrow Division, who is its ex-officio chairman; and has Ramvir, deputy commissioner, as the vice-chairman, has made plans for improvement in basic infrastructure and arranging a light-and-sound show too. It may here be recalled that earlier the state cabinet had cancelled the previous SAD-BJP government’s orders to entrust the Saragarhi memorial gurdwara management to Baba Nand Singh Gurdwara, Nanaksar Kaleran, Jagraon, for 30 years.

“We have got acknowledgement from 12 army officials from England to participate in the event. All arrangements are being made to make the event successful,” said Ramvir.

He added, “We are making a comprehensive plan to develop Saragarhi memorial as a major tourist spot and, very soon, all facilities will be revamped.”

Local Congress MLA Parminder Singh Pinki said, “It’s great news to have the visit of senior army officials from England at Saragarhi. We are trying to put the memorial not only on the state tourism map but also on the national tourism circuit. We have demanded a special package for its development from chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh, who has written a book on the Saragarhi battle.”