Military to stage fighter fly pasts, navy warships, army bands to raise morale on Sunday - Broadsword by Ajai Shukla - Strategy. Economics. Defence.

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Friday 1 May 2020

Military to stage fighter fly pasts, navy warships, army bands to raise morale on Sunday

By Ajai Shukla
Business Standard, 2nd May 20

Even as the Centre extended the lockdown by two weeks on Friday, the armed forces announced a countrywide celebration by the military to celebrate the bravery and dedication of the “Covid-19 warriors” on Sunday.

Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), General Bipin Rawat, flanked by the army, navy and air force chiefs, announced In New Delhi that air force planes and helicopters, naval warships and army bands would participate in the celebrations.

“On behalf of the armed forces, we want to thank all Covid-19 warriors, the doctors, nurses, sanitation workers, police, home guards, the delivery boys who delivered essential commodities in the homes of the people, and the media which has been reaching out to our population with the message of government on how to carry on with lives during difficult times,” said Rawat.

Putting the limelight on the public, Rawat said: “We also cannot forget the people of our nation who have strictly adhered to all the guidelines issued by the government from time to time.” 

Rawat detailed a string of “special activities for the nation” that the military will be presenting on Sunday.

 “We will be conducting fly pasts from Srinagar to Thiruvananthapuram; and from the east in Dibrugarh, across the length and breadth of the country, to Kutch in Gujarat. The fly past will be conducted by fixed wing aircraft and by fighter aircraft,” said Rawat.

There will also be showering of petals from helicopters on hospitals across the country for saving our country from Covid,” said the CDS.

“The navy on its part will be out on the seas in its formations. You will witness the lighting of our ships on the seashore, expressing solidarity and gratitude once again for our (Covid-19) warriors,” he said. 

“The Indian Army on its part will conduct mounted band displays along some of the hospitals, particularly Covid hospitals, not just in Delhi, but almost every district of our country,” said Rawat.

“To express that we stand by our police forces, the armed forces will also be laying a wreath at the police memorial on the morning of May 3,” said Rawat. It is unprecedented for the military to lay a wreath on a police memorial.

Rawat said the detailed itinerary for these activities on Sunday would be made public later.

“The armed forces stand solidly behind the nation. We convey our gratitude to each and every corona warrior who has been involved in this fight; and to each and every citizen who has adhered to the guidelines emanating from the government,” he said.

“If we are able to win this fight, it will happen because of the patience and discipline displayed by every citizen of our nation,” he concluded.

1 comment:

  1. No one with any true understanding of military matters and/or objectivity had any illusions about Rawat, either when he was appointed COAS or the first CDS.

    It was hoped as CDS that the political skills that got him to these offices might at least be put to good use in negotiating political compromises between the services to achieve the necessary military reforms. Sadly there is no evidence of that so we have defaulted to his brazen pleasing of political masters for his next sinecure - Governorship or even a Cabinet post.

    But this once again underlines the inconvenient truth that many serving military and veterans still do not acknowledge, that the greatest damage to India's military has been done not by the netas and babus - who have their share of the blame - but by rapidly deteriorating professionalism, culture, and values practiced by senior military leadership.

    Those serving may have constraints but if those veterans with the character, competence, and conscience do not organize in a formal and concerted way to push back against the rapid rot consuming the Indian military, no amount of hand wringing in columns and social media will undo the damage.

    Adarsh scam should have been a wake up call about self-service replacing service in the Indian military's ethos, but just like that was swept under the carpet, this egregious episode will also go by marking another depressing milestone in Indian military leadership's journey to the bottom.


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