Former Indian army officers attend Dhaka’s I-Day celebrations

March 27th, 2008 - 3:33 pm ICT by admin  


Dhaka, March 27 (IANS) One of the Indian Army generals behind the military campaign against Pakistan in the eastern theatre of war in 1971 recalled how his men and Mukti Bahini, the Bangladeshi freedom fighters, “fought shoulder to shoulder”. Lt. Gen. (retd) J.F.R. Jacob, former chief of staff of the Indian Army’s Eastern Command, expressed his pleasure at being invited by the Bangladesh government to witness the Independence and National Day programmes Wednesday.

“I feel proud of visiting Bangladesh on its 37th anniversary of the Independence and National Day,” he said in a brief reaction to the media at National Parade Square.

Jacob and some other former Indian army officers and their spouses witnessed the parade, The Daily Star newspaper said.

Recollecting the memories of the war, he said: “We, the Indian Army and the Mukti Bahini, fought shoulder to shoulder in 1971.”

Jacob paid rich tributes to the valiant freedom fighters as well as the Indian Army personnel who sacrificed their lives to liberate Bangladesh.

“I want to see a prosperous Bangladesh for which millions of people shed their blood and sacrificed their lives,” Jacob said.

An 11-member team of former Indian Army officers led by Jacob arrived in Dhaka Tuesday, reported Bangladesh Sangbad Sanstha (BSS), the official news agency.

The Joint Command of the Indian forces and Bangladeshi freedom fighters swept through much of what was then East Pakistan and reached Dhaka Dec 16, when the Pakistan Army’s Lt. Gen. A.A.K. Niazi surrendered with 93,000 officers and men.

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