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Paying his tribute to the Bose, Modi tweeted saying that the Azad Hind Fauj founder's contribution to India's history is "unparalleled."
On the occasion of Parakram Diwas, Prime Minister Narendra Modi virtually participated in a ceremony today to name 21 uninhabited islands of the Andaman and Nicobar islands after Param Vir Chakra awardees. He also unveiled a model for a memorial dedicated to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose to commemorate the late freedom fighter's 126th birth anniversary.
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The government of independent India was first formed and the tricolour was hoisted for the first time ever on the land of Andaman, Modi said in his speech, highlighting the importance of the union territory in the nation's fight for freedom.
"For decades, the potential of the country was underestimated. But now, India is seen as capable of touching the heights of modern development," Modi said. "The islands of India can offer a lot to the world. But earlier this potential was not recognised, no action was taken.
Union Home Minister Amit Shah, who reached Port Blair on Sunday night to take part in ceremonies, also addressed the nation through a speech.
"In India's struggle for freedom, Subhash babu always shined like a star. His 15,000 km-long march's route is still respected and looked back at," Shah said.
He will later hoist a national flag and deliver a speech at the Netaji Stadium where Bose unfurled the tricolour flag on December 30, 1943. The minister will also take stock of development activities on the archipelago and visit Cellular Jail.
About the islands
Modi named 16 islands located in the north and middle Andaman districts and five in South Andaman today in honor of Param Vir Chakra awardees.
This initiative will "perpetuate their memory as long as this earth last" and "increase the enthusiasm of the army," Shah said in his speech on Monday.
The names of the awardees are: Major Somnath Sharma, Naik Jadunath Singh, 2nd Lt. Rama Raghoba Rane, Company Havildar Major Piru Singh, Lance Naik Karam Singh, Captain Gurbachan Singh Salaria, Major Dhan Singh Thapa, Subedar Joginder Singh, Major Shaitan Singh, Lt. Colonel Ardeshir Burzorji Tarapore, CQMH Abdul Hamid, Lance Naik Albert Ekka, Flying Officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon, Major Hoshiar Singh, 2nd Lt. Arun Khetarpal, Naib Subedar Bana Singh, Major Ramaswamy Parameswaran, Lt. Manoj Kumar Pandey, Grenadier Yogendra Singh Yadav, Rifleman Sanjay Kumar and Captain Vikram Batra.
"This step will be an everlasting tribute to our heroes, several of whom had made the ultimate sacrifice to protect the sovereignty and integrity of the nation," a release from the Prime Minister's Office said.
The names of our islands have for a long time had an imprint of slavery, Modi said in his speech on Monday.
"It is my honour that when I had last visited Port Blair, I got to bestow Indian names upon three main islands," he said.
The Modi government had previously renamed Ross Islands as Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Dweep, Neil Island as Shaheed Dweep and Havelock Island as Swaraj Dweep in 2018.
About the memorial
The memorial will be set up on Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Dweep. It will have a museum, cable car ropeway, laser and sound show, guided heritage trail through historical buildings and a theme-based children's amusement park besides a restro lounge, officials said.
Monday marks the end of the 'Azadi ka Amrit Mahotsav Iconic Events Week' organised by the Ministry of Home Affairs that celebrated 75 years of India's independence across several states and union territories, namely Manipur, Nagaland, Gujarat, Odisha, West Bengal and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.
Paying his tribute to the Bose, Modi had tweeted saying that the Azad Hind Fauj founder's contribution to India's history is "unparalleled."
"Deeply influenced by his thoughts, we are working to realise his vision for India," Modi said.
Bollywood actors show support
Actors from the Bollywood industry who have played the roles of Param Vir Chakra awardees took to Twitter to showcase their support for the Modi government's move to rename the islands.
Sidharth Malhotra, who played Captain Vikram Batra in "Shershaah," said the news left him with goosebumps. "My heart swells with pride that I was fortunate to live his role on screen. This step taken by PM @narendramodi ensures that Shershaah lives on forever," Malhotra tweeted.
Ajay Devgan who assumed the role of Lt. Manoj Kumar Pandey in "LOC: Kargil," Jackie Shroff, Anupam Kher and Subhash Ghai also hailed the prime minister for his tribute to the Indian soldiers.
With agency inputs
First Published: Jan 23, 2023 10:59 AM IST