Kolkata: In an attempt to pay respect to the deceased souls of the army men killed while fighting for the country, the iconic Eden Gardens in Kolkata unveiled four stands named after four slain heroes Colonel Neelakantan Jayachandran Nair, Havildar Hangpan Dada, Lieutenant Colonel Dhan Singh Thapa and Subedar Joginder Singh, before the Kolkata Knight Riders vs Delhi Daredevils clash.
This comes right after a day when KKR captain Gautam Gambhir vowed that his foundation would pay for the education of the children of the army men who gave up their lives while serving the country.
Amongst many others, the unveiling of the stands were done by Cricket Association of Bengal (CAB) president Sourav Ganguly, Lieutenant-General Praveen Bakshi, PVSM, AVSM, VSM, ADC General Officer Commanding-in-chief Eastern Army Command.
Havildar Hangpan Dada, whose stand was unveiled by CAB president and former Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly, was a part of the Assam Regiment who died while fighting suspected intruders in the Naugram district in North Kashmir last year. He was honoured with a posthumous Ashok Chakra, according to CAB’s website.
Lt. Gen Bakshi unveiled the stand of Colonel Neelakantan Jayachandran Nair, who was a part of the 16 Maratha Light Infantry. Nair, while negotiating a series of road bends on the Mokokchung-Mariani Road in Nagaland was ambushed by 100 armed rioters. Died in 1993, he was awarded with posthumous Ashok Chakra and Kirti Chakra award.
Chief of staff, Head Quarters Eastern Army Command Lieutenant General Dushyant Singh and CAB Joint Secretary Subir Ganguly unveiled the Joginder Singh stand, the soldier who didn’t evacuate an area even after being severely injured and who held on to a defensive position in the north-east. Singh was honoured with a posthumous Param Vir Chakra.
Colonel Dhan Singh Thapa, whose stand was unveiled by Lieutenant General Giriraj Singh, General Officer Commanding, Bengal Area and CAB joint-secretary Avishek Dalmiya was a part of the Gorkha rifles and was involved in the 1962 war against China. Thapa was honoured with a Param Vir Chakra.
It was on January 22 earlier this year during the ODI against England that saw the Eden Gardens name stands after cricketers and cricket administrators. The cricket personnel with their stands at the stadium are Sourav Ganguly, B.N Dutt, Pankaj Roy and Jagmohan Dalmiya. Also on that very day it was announced that stands would be named after soldiers as the stadium is in the Maidan area which is under the Indian army.
It definitely is a good gesture on the part of the Eden Gardens authorities and it also sets a good example of the fact that we should remember the sacrifices of those who died while fighting for us.
(With inputs from Hindustan Times)