CRPF Raising Day: MoS Home Nityanand Rai recalls valour of CRPF men in 1959 China attack in Ladakh

Photo: PTI

Union minister Nityanand Rai on Monday recalled the valour and sacrifice of the CRPF personnel outnumbered during an attack by heavily armed Chinese troops in 1959 in Hot Springs in Ladakh, which is one of the friction points in the current Sino-India standoff.

Rai, the union minister of state for home, was speaking here while officiating as the chief guest of the 82nd Raising Day celebrations of the Central Reserve Police Force(CRPF) headquarters here.

Home Minister Amit Shah was slated to attend the event but he could not make it owing to “some exigency”, officals said.

The CRPF has a rich history of valour and sacrifice…and on October 21, 1959, it showed that in Hot Springs in Ladakh when the Chinese attacked, Rai said.

“What a coincidence. Whenever China attacks, its strength is huge and ours is less…but China has always suffered the consequences,” he said, but did not elaborate.

He said 10 CRPF personnel sacrificed their lives in Hot Springs, and the Chinese army had to suffer a “big damage.”

Similarly, he said the CRPF defended the country at Sardar Post in Gujarat when a small team of the force repulsed an attack by a 3,000-strong army contingent of Pakistan in 1965.

“Pakistan would shake with fear whenever it would recall this incident,” Rai said.

The minister praised the force for ensuring the security of the country as he said without security there can be no peace, no development and no unity.

He said under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah terrorism and Naxalism were being wiped out in the country.

In the last six months, 150 terrorists have been killed and 4-6 terrorist outfits like Lashkar-e-Taiba(LeT) and Hizbul Mujahideen have been eliminated from Kashmir, he said.

Rai said terrorists should know they will have to either change their ideology or will be wiped out by joint security forces like the CRPF, the army and the Jammu and Kashmir police.

He also recalled the 2019 Pulwama attack on a CRPF convoy in which 40 personnel were killed, and said the prime minister then had declared this sacrifice of the troops will not go in vain.

“The force went into Pakistan and killed the terrorists and Pakistan just kept watching. India did what it wanted to do,” the minister said in a reference to IAF’s air strikes in Balakot after the Pulwama attack.

During the course of his speech, the minister made an apparent error while referring to the history of the CRPF.

He said the country’s first home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel gave the flag or colours to the force on July 27 in recognition of the good work done by it in aligning all the princely states with India post-independence.

However, an official pointed out that the CRPF was given the President’s colours by Sardar Patel on March 19, 1950.

The importance of July 27 is due to the raising of CRPF’s first battalion on this day in 1939 in the Neemuch town of Madhya Pradesh.

In 1939, the force was raised as the Crown Representatives Police under the British and was re-named CRPF in 1949.

The minister also said the Modi government wants that a force like the CRPF should be well equipped and their families are taken care off well.

Home Minister Shah praised the CRPF on the occasion, and congratulated it through a tweet.

“CRPF is synonymous with valour, courage and sacrifice.”

“Time and again @crpfindia has made the nation proud. Their dedication to serve the society during Covid-19 is unparalleled. I join millions of Indians to wish our brave CRPF personnel and their families on 82nd Raising Day,” he said.

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