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Military and its glory in focus at literature fest by the lake

Besides interactions with war veterans and winners of gallantry awards, the festival will have a book exhibition, handicrafts stalls, armament display and live painting corner

punjab Updated: Dec 08, 2017 15:41 IST
HT Correspondents
HT Correspondents
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
1/7

In the countdown to India’s first Military Literature Festival, Indian Army’s motorcycle daredevil team put on a display in Chandigarh. The two-day festival at the Lake Club, opened Friday as a joint initiative of the Punjab and Chandigarh administrations, supported by the Army’s western command. It aims to create awareness about military history and the accomplishments of the Indian armed forces. (Anil Dayal / HT Photo)

City Beautiful is geared up to experience an amalgamation of war stories, experience, and defence literature under a single roof with the two-day Military Literature Festival starting at the Lake Club, on Friday.

The event is a joint initiative of the Punjab government and the Chandigarh administration, and is being supported by the western command of the Indian Army.

The festival aims to create awareness among people, especially the children, about military history and accomplishments of our forces.The event is open to all and has free entries. The registration for it can be done at www.militaryliteraturefestival.com.

Besides interactions with veterans, the festival will have a book exhibition, handicrafts stalls, armament display, live painting corner, magic shows for children, selfie with war heros, among others.

The festival will also host a performance by Punjabi sufi singer Satinder Sartaaj at the Capitol Complex, whereas Gorkha soldiers will stage the famous khukri dance at the lake club.

Adequate parking facilities have been made and shuttle service will be provided for the last-mile connectivity.

War veterans to interact with schoolchildren

To provide schoolchildren an opportunity to interact with war veterans, the festival is organising a ‘Children’s Samwad’. These veterans include heros from the Sino-India war of 1962, the Indo-Pak war of 1965, the Bangladesh liberation war of 1971 and the Kargil war.

Honorary Captain Bana Singh (retd), a Param Vir Chakra (PVC) winner—India’s highest wartime military honour— will share his experience with the children.

Besides him, Brigadier Kuldip Singh Chandpuri (retd), a Maha Vir Chakra winner, best known for his heroics in the Battle of Longewala when he was successful in holding the Pakistani forces for a full night with just 120 soldiers, during the Bangladesh liberation war of 1971, is also participating in the festival.

Naib Subedar Sanjay Kumar, who was awarded the Param Vir Chakra for capturing Area Flat Top, despite being grievously injured, during the Kargil War, and Subedar Yogendra Singh Yadav, the youngest person to be awarded the Param Vir Chakra, will also interact with the children. Other decorated officers like Col Balwan Singh and Brigadier Sukhjit Singh, Maha Vir Chakra winners, will also interact with the schoolchildren.

‘Will be a learning experience for youth’

Talking about the significance of the festival, Major General BS Grewal (retd), director of Maharaja Ranjit Singh Armed Forces Preparatory Institute, Mohali, said, “Cadets at our institute are looking forward to the festival with great enthusiasm. The experience will be very beneficial for them because they will get an opportunity to meet and interact with many veterans.”

Shubhdeep Singh Aulakh, a student at the institute, said, “These events should be organised more often so that aspirants like us get to know how we can best serve the country. Interacting with the veterans and knowing their experience will be a lifetime opportunity.”

Events to look for on Day 1

Panel discussions with Punjab governor VP Singh Badnore, Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh, senior journalists Harish Khare, Barkha Dutt and Vir Sanghvi.

Venue A (Peshawar 1834 - Jamrud 1837)

Discussions on First Kashmir War 1947– 48, Kargil War of 1999, defensive battles of Rajasthan, Use of air power in the 1971 War and counter insurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir.

Venue B (Kashmir 1819 - Ladakh 1834)

Discussions on strategic perspective–China, Indian peace keeping force in Sri Lanka, role of Indian armed forces in World War II, military heroes and 1857– the first war of independence.

Venue C (Multan 1818)

Discussions on shape and contours of the Indian Navy of the future, military inspection by Vir Sanghvi-- an interactive session with military historians and authors, Indian military and society, and the joys and dilemmas of being a military family.

Venue D (Saragarhi Samvad)

Over 1,200 schoolchildren will interact with war veterans. They will get an opportunity to meet Param Vir Chakra winners Honorary Captain Bana Singh (retd), Subedar Yogender Yadav and Naib Sudedar Sanjay Kumar.

First Published: Dec 08, 2017 09:02 IST