India celebrates December 16 as Vijay Diwas to commemorate its victory over Pakistan during the 1971 war that led to the creation of Bangladesh. It was on this day in 1971 that the chief of the Pakistani forces, General AA Khan Niazi, along with 93,000 troops, surrendered unconditionally before the Indian forces.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi will on Wednesday light up ‘Swarnim Vijay Mashaal’ from the eternal flame of the National War Memorial here marking the 50th anniversary of India’s victory over Pakistan in 1971. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh unveiled the logo for ‘Swarnim Vijay Varsh’. Four victory mashaals (flaming torches) will be lit from the eternal flame and they will be carried to various parts of India, including to the villages of Param Vir Chakra and Maha Vir Chakra awardees of the 1971 war, the defence ministry said in a statement. Soil from the villages of these Awardees and from areas where major battles were fought in 1971 has also been brought to the NWM.
Rich tributes are paid to the martyrs who laid down their lives during the India-Pakistan war of 1971. The Indo-Pak war took place as the Indian government had decided to go against Pakistan to save Bengali Muslims and Hindus on December 3, 1971. The war fought between India and Pakistan lasted for merely 13 days, and the Pakistan Army surrendered before Indian forces. It was the Indian Army’s one of the biggest victories ever made against Pakistan. This battle is also considered to be one of the most violent wars of the 20th century, as it witnessed large-scale atrocities. The year also saw the exodus of as many as 10 million refugees and the killing of 3 million people by the Pakistani forces.