India Celebrates 24th Kargil Vijay Diwas to Honour the Heroes of 1999 War

Captain Vikram-Batra Lt. Manoj Kumar Pandey

New Delhi: India is celebrating its 24th Kargil Vijay Diwas on July 26, 2023, to pay tribute to the bravery and valour of the Indian soldiers who made the ultimate sacrifice for the country during the Kargil War in 1999.

  • The Kargil War was a significant military victory over Pakistan, which had intruded into the Indian side of the Line of Control (LOC) in the Kargil district of Jammu and Kashmir and occupied strategic positions in the high-altitude areas.
  • The war lasted for more than 60 days and resulted in the death of 527 Indian soldiers and an unknown number of Pakistani casualties. The war was code-named Operation Vijay by the Indian Army, which means Victory in Hindi.
  • The war ended on July 26, 1999, when the Indian forces recaptured all the Indian posts that had been occupied by the Pakistani intruders. The day was declared as Kargil Vijay Diwas by then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who also announced the institution of several gallantry awards for the brave soldiers.
  • On Kargil Vijay Diwas, the nation pays homage to the martyrs of the war at various memorials across the country. The main ceremony is held at the Kargil War Memorial in Dras, where the names of the fallen heroes are inscribed on a wall. The Prime Minister of India also lays a wreath at the Amar Jawan Jyoti at the India Gate in New Delhi and addresses the nation.
  • Kargil Vijay Diwas is a day to remember the courage, valor, and sacrifice of the Indian Armed Forces, who defended the sovereignty and integrity of the nation against all odds. It is also a day to celebrate the spirit of patriotism and unity among the people of India, who supported and saluted their soldiers during the war.
  • Some of the famous heroes of the Kargil War include Captain Vikram Batra, who led his team to capture Point 4875 and Tiger Hill and uttered his famous words \”Yeh Dil Maange More\” before laying down his life; Lieutenant Manoj Kumar Pandey, who led his platoon to capture Jubar Top and Khalubar Hills and was awarded Param Vir Chakra posthumously; Major Padmapani Acharya, who commanded his battalion to capture Tololing Top and died while fighting; Rifleman Sanjay Kumar, who single-handedly killed four enemy soldiers and captured Point 4875; Captain Anuj Nayyar, who destroyed three enemy bunkers on Pimple Hill and died while clearing another one; Captain Haneef Uddin, who was part of a helicopter-borne operation to rescue an injured officer and was shot down by the enemy fire; Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja, who was flying a reconnaissance mission over Batalik sector and was shot down by a missile; among many others.
  • Some of the inspirational quotes by the heroes of the Kargil War are:
    • “Either I will come back after hoisting the tricolor, or I will come back wrapped in it but I will be back for sure”—Captain Vikram Batra
    • “If death strikes before I prove my blood, I swear I’ll kill Death”—Lt. Manoj Kumar Pandey
    • “Some goals are so worthy that it’s glorious even to fail”—Captain Manoj Kumar Pandey
    • “I won’t die in an accident or die of any disease. I will go down in glory”—Major Padmapani Acharya
    • “No Sir, I will not abandon my post come what may”—Grenadier Yogendra Singh Yadav
    • “You have never lived until you have almost died. And for those who choose to fight, life has a special flavor. The protected will never know”—Captain R Subramanian
Captain Vikram-Batra Lt. Manoj Kumar Pandey