Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will attend the seventh Armed Forces Veterans' Day celebrations at Dehradun Cantonment on Saturday, officials said.
He will preside over the event and address a veterans' rally at Jaswant Ground, they said. Singh will also launch the 'Soul of Steel Alpine Challenge', a joint adventure sport initiative of the Indian Army and CLAW Global, by flagging off a car expedition from Dehradun to Ghamshali in the Niti Valley, the Defence ministry said in a statement.
To pay homage to the supreme sacrifice and the dedicated service of India's armed forces, Singh will dedicate Shaurya Sthal -- developed by the Uttarakhand War Memorial Trust, which unanimously decided to hand over its control to the Indian Army -- to the armed forces, it said. This year, the occasion is being celebrated at nine locations -- Juhunjhunu, Jalandhar, Panagarh, New Delhi, Dehradun, Chennai, Chandigarh, Bhubaneshwar and Mumbai -- by the three Service Headquarters.
The event in Chennai will be presided over by the Minister of State for Defence. During the event, the veterans will be felicitated with medals, souvenirs and recognition certificates, among others. The 'We For Veterans' anthem -- an ode to commemorating the valour and sacrifice of the veterans -- will be played at the events.
The Armed Forces Veterans' Day is celebrated on January 14 as on this day in 1953, the Army's first Indian Commander in Chief (C-in-C) -- Field Marshal KM Cariappa, who led the Indian forces to victory in the 1947 war -- formally retired from service, the ministry said. Veterans' Day was first celebrated in 2016 and it was decided to commemorate the day every year by hosting such interactive events in honour of the veterans and their families, it said.