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Netaji's birth anniversary: PM to name 21 Andaman islands after Param Vir Chakra Awardees

Will also unveil model of the National Memorial dedicated to Netaji

PTI01_22_2023_000020A An artisan works on a fibre glass model of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose at his workshop ahead of his 126th birth anniversary | PTI

On the occasion of Parakram Diwas, the birth anniversary of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose, PM Narendra Modi will name 21 unnamed islands of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands on Monday. On the 126th birth anniversary of the freedom fighter, Modi will name the islands after 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees, via video conferencing.

Modi will also unveil the model of the National Memorial dedicated to Netaji to be built on Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose Dweep. To honour Netaji's memory, Ross Island was renamed Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Dweep by PM Modi during his visit to the Island in 2018.

The memorial will have a museum, a cable car ropeway, a laser-and-sound show, a guided heritage trail through historical buildings and a theme-based children's amusement park, besides a restro lounge, according to reports.

Taking to Twitter on Monday, the PM paid homage to Netaji. “Today, on Parakram Diwas, I pay homage to Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose and recall his unparalleled contribution to India’s history. He will be remembered for his fierce resistance to colonial rule. Deeply influenced by his thoughts, we are working to realise his vision for India,” he wrote on Twitter.

Of the 21 islands that will be named on Monday, 16 are located in North and Middle Andaman district, and five in South Andaman. The largest unnamed island will be named after the first Param Vir Chakra awardee, Major Somnath Sharma, who was martyred in action on November 3, 1947 in a face-off with Pakistani infiltrators near Srinagar Airport. The second largest unnamed island will be named after the second Param Vir Chakra awardee, Subedar and Hony Captain (then Lance Naik) Karam Singh. He earned his Param Vir Chakra in the Indo-Pakistani War of 1947 where battles were fought for control of the Tithwal sector.

Amit Shah in Andaman

Union Home Minister Anit Shah arrived in Port Blair on a two-day visit, and will address a public meeting on the occasion of Netaji's birth anniversary.

He is also expected to hoist the national flag and deliver a public speech at Netaji Stadium—where the freedom fighter unfurled the tricolour on December 30, 1943.

Political row in West Bengal

While multiple programmes have been planned to celebrate the freedom fighter's birth anniversary, the RSS's plans to honour Netaji has triggered a row. RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat will address a public programme at Shahid Minar ground in Kolkata.

In a statement released on Sunday, his daughter Anita Bose Pfaff noted that the freedom fighter believed in equal rights for all, irrespective of their gender, religion, caste and social position. She said that her father wanted India to be a secular place. She added that the organisation's ideology and the nationalist leader's ideas of secularism and inclusiveness are "poles apart and do not coincide".

-with PTI inputs


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