Jammu, Jun 14 (PTI) The Swarnim Vijay Mashaal, which was lit by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in New Delhi last year marking the beginning of the 50th anniversary celebrations of India's victory over Pakistan in 1971, reached the martyr memorial in the Udhampur-based Northern Command on Monday.
The station commander of Udhampur military garrison received the victory flame at Dhruva War Memorial, the defence spokesperson said.
India celebrates December 16 as Vijay Diwas to commemorate its victory over Pakistan during the 1971 war that led to the creation of Bangladesh.
Last year, PM Modi lit the 'Swarnim Vijay Varsh Mashaal' (golden victory year torch) from the eternal flame of the National War Memorial in New Delhi on December 16.
On Monday, a solemn wreath was laid at the 'Dhruva Shaheed Smarak' at the Northern Command's headquarters in Udhampur to commemorate the historic victory of the Indian armed forces over the Pakistan Army in December 1971 and pay homage to the Swarnim Vijay Mashaal (victory flame), he said.
Lieutenant General Y K Joshi, Army Commander, Northern Command laid the wreath to honour the flame that was lit in remembrance of the valiant soldiers who have given the ultimate sacrifice in the service of our nation.
The event was attended by defence veterans, NCC cadets and senior Army officers of Udhampur military station.
The Swarnim Vijay Mashaal had arrived at Udhampur on Sunday from Nagrota and was received with full ceremonial honours. The victory flame was then escorted to the local unit quarter guard.
On Monday, the victory flame was handed over to the station commander of Udhampur military garrison after the customary 'last mile run' to be placed at Dhruva War Memorial, spokesman said.
The wreath laying was thereafter carried out by JCOs and veterans followed by wreath laying by the Army Commander of Northern Command.
On culmination of the ceremony, the Swarnim Vijay Mashaal was further handed over to Counter Insurgency Force (Delta) where it will be taken to various units to commemorate the victory of 1971, spokesman said.
The year 2021 has been named as “Swarnim Vijay Varsh” by the Government of India as the nation started the celebrations of 50 years of the 1971 Indo-Pak war which had resulted in the largest military surrender after World War II.
The inaugural event was held at the National War Memorial in New Delhi on December 16 last year where PM Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, the Chief of Defence Staff and the tri-services chiefs paid homage to the fallen soldiers.
After the Prime Minister lit the 'Swarnim Vijay Mashaal' on the occasion, four victory mashaals (flames) taken from the eternal flame were then carried to various parts of the country, including the native villages of Param Vir Chakra and Maha Vir Chakra awardees of the 1971 war.
Besides, soil from the villages of these awardees and from areas where major battles were fought in 1971 are being brought to the National War Memorial, the spokesman said. PTI AB HDA