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Speech of Indian Defence Minister at Bangladesh HC, New Delhi

International desk
|  22 Nov 2021, 21:33 | Update : 22 Nov 2021, 23:15
Speech of Indian Defence Minister at Bangladesh HC, New Delhi
Photo: Collected

On behalf of the Armed Forces of India and the Government of India, I congratulate the Armed Forces of Bangladesh on the 50th anniversary and wish them the very best in their endeavour towards peace and security. This year is of extraordinary significance for India-Bangladesh relations, as we commemorate the Golden Jubilee of the Liberation of Bangladesh, the fifty years India-Bangladesh diplomatic ties & the birth centenary of Banga Bandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. In this momentous time, I salute the valiant struggle of the Muktibahini in the Muktijuddha – War of Liberation - in 1971. Spirit of Muktijuddha forms the core of today’s Armed Forces of Bangladesh. I also take this opportunity to pay my tribute to the sacrifices made by the brave soldiers of the Indian Armed Forces, who stood steadfast with their Bangladeshi brothers and sisters during the epic War of Liberation of Bangladesh. On this day, I also remember the extraordinary leadership in India, which rose to the occasion against all odds and limitations in 1971, in support of a struggling nation fighting against the injustice and unspeakable atrocities perpetrated by the Pakistani Army. It was a fight against an oppressive and undemocratic regime, which defied people’s mandate.  India gave shelter to millions of refugees even when we did not have enough for our own.  A struggling nation gave shoulder to another. The proud and professional Bangladesh Armed Forces of today owe their foundational values to the Liberation War of 1971. It was the trials and tribulations of the Liberation War that saw the formation of Bangladesh Armed Forces.It is no coincidence that today the Armed Forces of Bangladesh are one of the highest contributors to the UN Peace Keeping Forces and are respected globally for their professionalism and commitment to just causes. I am glad that the cooperation between the Armed Forces of both countries is steadily progressing, by way of several activities - defence dialogue, staff talks, joint training, exercise and high level exchanges. It is remarkable that all three Service Chiefs of Bangladesh have visited India this year and from India, the Chiefs of Army and Air Force visited Bangladesh this year.  India has extended a Line of Credit worth USD 500 million to Bangladesh for defence equipment.

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