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The Government of India has decided to erect a National War Memorial in the vicinity of the India Gate, New Delhi, to honor its Armed Forces and memorialize armed forces members killed in war after Independence in 1947. A War Museum will be constructed in the adjoining Princes Park area. The proposed National War Memorial and the War Museum will be connected by a subway. The War Memorial and Museum are expected to cost ₹400 crore (US$59 million).[1][2]

Design[]

The memorial will be made around the existing chhatri (canopy) near India Gate. The memorial wall will be flushed with the ground and in harmony with existing aesthetics.[3] Names of martyrs killed in wars in 1947–48, 1961 (Goa), 1962 (Chinese aggression), 1965, 1971, 1987 ( Saichen), 1987-88 (Sri Lanka), 1999 (Kargil), and other Operations will be inscribed on a memorial wall. Assistance of foreign architects is expected to taken. The Government is expected to issue a global tender for the construction of the War memorial.[1][4]

The museum at the adjoining Princess Park will be largely underground, and connected to the chhatri area via a subway.[1] The Princess Park, is a 14-acres area north of India Gate, with barrack-type accommodation, built during World War II, which since 1947 has served as family accommodation for mid level armed forces officers posted in Service Headquarters in New Delhi.[5]

Timeline[]

The proposed site of the war memorial, Canopy near India Gate, Delhi.

2009 In the face of persistent demand from the armed forces and armed forces veterans for a national war memorial in the India Gate area, the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government hesitantly constituted Group of Ministers' (GoM) headed by Pranab Mukherjee (before he became the President) to examine the demand for a National War Memorial.[4]

20 October 2012 After a lapse of 50 years, the government decided to mark the anniversary of the offensive by China’s PLA formations from bases in Tibet, against Indian border defenses, on 20 October 1962, by solemn ceremony at the Amar Jawan jyoti, to honor Indian soldiers killed in the 1962 war. At the ceremony attended by chiefs of the armed forces, AK Antony, the Defenses Minister, announced that the Government has conceded the long-standing demand of the Indian Armed Forces for a National War Memorial, and that a national war memorial will be built at India Gate. He added that the group of ministers has cleared all outstanding issues on the matter and the armed forces will finally get their wish.[6][7]

December 2012 Sheila Dikshit, Chief Minister of Delhi, in separate letters to Defence Minister A K Antony, Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde and Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath, opposed the recommendations of the GOM to build a national war memorial at the India Gate complex, and suggested that the Armed Forces find an alternative site. She was reported to have said: "Why spoil this beautiful place? Why become a hindrance to the peoples enjoyment?"[8] The Urban Development Ministry and the Delhi Urban Art Commission were in agreement with the recommendations of Sheila Dikshit, Chief Minister of Delhi. The response of the Delhi Chief minister and the UPA government was a source of much discontent and angst amongst members of the armed forces.[9]

28 January 2014 Narendra Modi, before he became Prime Minister of India, at a political rally two days after the national Republic Day, said "There is no country in the world where there is not a war memorial. India has fought several wars, thousands of our soldiers have been martyred. Should we not remember them? Should not there be a war memorial".[10]

10 July 2014 Arun Jaitley, Finance Minister and Defence Minister of India, while making the allocation for the War memorial in Budget said, "I am happy to announce the war memorial will be constructed in the Princess Park. It will be supplemented by a war museum. I am allocating a sum of Rs 100 crore for this purpose".[2]

21 August 2014 The decision to build the national war memorial, and the war Museum, was approved on 21 August 2014 at a meeting attended by Arun Jaitley, Indian Defense Minister, and the Armed Forces chiefs, Air Chief Marshal Arup Raha, Admiral Robin Dhowan and General Dalbir Singh Suhag. The final decision is expected to approved by the cabinet.[1]

See also[]

References[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Pandit, Rajat (Aug 21, 2014). "National War Memorial finalized at India Gate complex". p. English. https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=National_War_Memorial_%28India%29&action=edit&redlink=1. Retrieved 21 August 2014. 
  2. 2.0 2.1 Rajat, Pandit (Jul 10, 2014). "Budget 2014: India to finally get a national war memorial, Modi govt allocates Rs 100cr". Times of India. http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/budget-2014/union-budget-2014/Budget-2014-India-to-finally-get-a-national-war-memorial-Modi-govt-allocates-Rs-100cr/articleshow/38146054.cms. Retrieved 21 August 2014. 
  3. Gokhale, Nitin A. (July 11, 2014). "Fulfilling a sacred contract with the soldier". http://nitinagokhale.blogspot.in/2014/07/fulfilling-sacred-contract-with-soldier.html. Retrieved 28 August 2014. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 Nitin Gokhale (December 16, 2012). "National war memorial - an unrealised dream". http://www.ndtv.com/article/india/blog-national-war-memorial-an-unrealised-dream-306013. Retrieved 21 August 2014. 
  5. "In Delhi, Army loses Lutyens territory; govt plans to build war museum, apartments in Princess Park - Economic Times". Jan 21, 2013. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2013-01-21/news/36463001_1_war-museum-prime-land-land-authority. Retrieved 2014-08-25. 
  6. "In a first, nation pays homage to martyrs of 1962 Indo-China war". First Post. Oct 20, 2012. http://www.firstpost.com/india/in-a-first-nation-pays-homage-to-martyrs-of-1962-indo-china-war-497160.html. Retrieved 28 August 2014. 
  7. http://www.newsx.com
  8. "India Gate not right place to build war memorial: Sheila Dikshit". economictimes. Apr 8, 2013. http://articles.economictimes.indiatimes.com/2013-04-08/news/38373944_1_national-war-memorial-india-gate-dikshit. Retrieved 21 August 2014. 
  9. Jayal, Air Marshal, Brijesh D (21 August 2014). "A QUESTION OF HONOUR". The Telegraph. http://www.telegraphindia.com/1140821/jsp/opinion/story_18726027.jsp#.U_nhfUgUZGE. Retrieved 24 August 2014. 
  10. Press Trust of India (28 January 2014). "Narendra Modi attacks Congress over lack of war memorial". Indian Express. http://indianexpress.com/article/india/politics/narendra-modi-attacks-congress-over-lack-of-war-memorial/. Retrieved 29 August 2014. 

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