India's first of its kind Military Literature Festival began here on Friday with Punjab Governor V.P.S. Badnore hoping it would prove to be a powerful platform, especially for the youth, to learn about the country's glorious military legacy.
A large number of military veterans, experts, scholars, writers, journalists, war correspondents, historians, artists, researchers and industrialists have come together to share their experiences.
The Governor hoped the event would also provide an opportunity to children, especially from remote areas, to interact with armed forces personnel and veterans.
Badnore congratulated Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, an ex-army captain, for staging the festival, which has showcased the indomitable spirit of Punjabis and their unparalleled contribution to India's freedom struggle.
He said it was Punjab that gave over a million people to fight for India's safety since its Independence in 1947.
Badnore said courage and valour were common to all nations as they all respect the brave and steadfast, but that "warfare, however, is not all about fighting but also its avoidance," as he reminded the audience of Chinese strategist Sun Tzu's dictum that the finest battle is one that is won without having been fought.
He also honoured the three living recipients of Paramvir Chakra, country's highest award for gallantry, namely Captain Bana Singh, Subedar Joginder Yadav and Naib Subedar Sanjay Kumar.
Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal said the state has been proudly known as the sword arm of India, with the finest and the most efficient soldiers and veterans, who have made the people proud with their exceptional acumen and expertise in warfare while defending the country from internal as well external aggression.
He hoped that this Military Literature Festival would go a long way in imbibing a spirit of patriotism and nationalism amongst youngsters, besides motivating them to opt for the Indian Army as their career.
Army's Western Command chief, Lt. Gen. Surinder Singh said going forward the festival would be further upgraded on a largescale to elicit maximum participation of the military academia and experts from across the country to make civilians aware of the military's glorious past.
He said it was the need of the hour to educate people about the defence preparedness of the country.
The two-day Military Literature Festival is being organised jointly by the Punjab government, the Chandigarh Administration and the Western Command.