Updated: September 15, 2021 7:24:56 am
Goa Governor P S Sreedharan Pillai on Tuesday said that the 1971 war was “the greatest achievement of our country in the field of war”. Pillai was speaking at a commemorative event held at the Azad Maidan in Panaji to felicitate veterans from Goa who had participated in the 1971 war. The event was held as part of the Swarnim Vijay Varsh, celebrating the ‘Golden Jubilee’ of India’s victory over Pakistan in 1971.
Pillai said there were lessons to be learnt from the 1971 war that led to the creation of Bangladesh and said all religions must come together and unite. “The 1971 Bangladesh war, according to me, (there was) a false concept regarding a nation…a nation based on religion and a particular school of thought. It will never exist. Gandhiji and others always stood for a united India. Then, one group of people, I am not mentioning any names or anything, they stated that no, religion is the basis for a country, so we want a separate country… But in 1971, that country was divided into two because of the people of East Pakistan. Bangladesh, they gave a verdict in favour of the Awami League led by Shaikh Mujibur Rehman,” he said.
He also mentioned the national anthem of Bangladesh. “Bangladesh national anthem is (Amar) Sonar Bangla, even though it is declared as a particular religion’s republic…
“I am stressing this because our country is the greatest country in the world. Pracheen Bharat….. Our concept was Lokah Samasta Sukhino Bhavantu. The entire creature becomes the world, all religions born in the world were welcomed by us. There was no persecution against …by and large, I am saying, nothing in ancient India,” Pillai said.
He said that the 1971 war had taught us many lessons. “People from all walks of life — Hindu, Muslim, Christians, everybody should unite together. Our endeavour should be to achieve the targeted goal for that purpose, we will try. This is the apt time for that,” the Governor said.
Chief Minister Pramod Sawant, who was also present at the event, said, “I welcome the Vijay Mashaal in Goa and I feel very proud to be part of this gathering. By remembering the 1971 war, the youth will once again feel inspired and it will ignite values of patriotism.”
The Victory Flame of Swarnim Vijay Varsh celebrations, commemorating the 50th anniversary of victory in the 1971 Indo-Pak War, arrived at INS Gomantak, Goa on 11 Sep 21. On Tuesday, Vijay Mashaal was received by the Governor and at the conclusion of the ceremony, it was handed over to the flame relay team by Sawant.
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