Amar Jawan Jyoti merges with flame at National War Memorial; Check details

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At this place the Amar Jawan Jyoti has been burning since 1971. (ANI Image)

The Amar Jawan Jyoti flame at India Gate on Friday (January 21, 2022) was formally merged with the National War Memorial flame. In a solemn ceremony, the flame was merged and with this the system of two separate flames to honour the country’s fallen heroes came to an end.

It was merged by Air Marshal Balabadra Radha Krishna, Chief of Integrated Defence Staff.

Transition in the history of India Gate

Today’s ceremony marked a transition in history of the memorial at India Gate. At this place the Amar Jawan Jyoti has been burning since 1971. The foundation stone of India Gate was laid almost 100 years ago by the Duke of Connaught.

More about Amar Jawan Jyoti

This memorial was constructed to honour the Indian soldiers who laid down their lives during the Indo-Pak war of 1971. India had won the war and a new country Bangladesh was born.

This memorial is 50 years old.

On January 26, 1972, the Amar Jawan Jyoti was inaugurated by the then prime minister, Indira Gandhi.

National War Memorial

The National War Memorial which was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in 2019 is located just about 400 metres away on the other side of India Gate. It was built at a cost of Rs 176 crore and across 40-acres.

At the memorial names of 25,942 soldiers have been inscribed in golden letters on granite tablets.

As has been reported in 2019, this memorial is dedicated to soldiers who were killed during various operations including Indo-Pak Wars of 1947, 1965 and 1971; Indo-China War 1962; Indian Peace Keeping Operation in Sri Lanka; other soldiers lost during Peacekeeping Operations under United Nations Flag; Kargil Conflict of 1999 and also of the soldiers who lost their lives in counter-terrorist operations.

More about NWM

At the memorial, the eternal flame is positioned below the central 15.5 m obelisk. And, there are four circles —”Veerta Chakra”, “Amar Chakra”, “Tyag Chakra” and the “Rakshak Chakra”.

Govt sources speak

Reports quoting unnamed sources clarified that the flame at Amar Jawan Jyoti is not being extinguished. It is being merged with the flame at the National War Memorial, which is located a few meters away from the Amar Jawan Jyoti. The clarification came from the government following objections raised by senior Congress leader Rahul Gandhi.

The clarification from the government sources stated that the names which are inscribed on India Gate are of only some of the martyrs who had fought for the British in World War I and the Anglo-Afghan war. “Thus is a symbol of our colonial past,” sources said.

Adding, “There is a lot of misinformation being circulated regarding the flame at Amar jawan Jyoti.” “It is odd to see that the flame paid homage to martyrs of 1971 war and other wars, but none of the names were present there.”

According to sources, “the names of all Indian martyrs from all wars including 1971 and other wars before and after are all housed at the National War Memorial. And, it is a true Shradhanjali to the martyrs to have the flame paying tributes there.”

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