India’s national war memorial (first proposed in 1960) was inaugurated at the India Gate complex in Delhi by the PM. About
- Spread across 40 acres, it is built to honour soldiers who laid down their lives defending the nation, post-independence.
- It also commemorates the sacrifices made by Indian soldiers sent on peace-keeping missions of the United Nations, Humanitarian Assistance Disaster Relief (HADR) and counter-insurgency operations.
- The Memorial has four concentric circles, a central stone obelisk (15.5m), and an eternal flame built at a cost of 176 crores.
Also read: Implications Of US-China Trade War, Critical Analysis of Coastal Regulation Zone (CRZ)
- The concentric circles are designed as a Chakravyuh (an ancient Indian war formation) and are called:
- Amar Chakra or Circle of Immortality: innermost circle, at its centre stands the obelisk topped by a bronze lion capital. It has a hollow centre where the eternal flame is situated.
- Veerta Chakra or Circle of Bravery: a covered gallery, with bronze murals depicting Battles of Gangasagar, Longewala, Tithwal, Rizangla, and Operation Meghdoot (1984), Trident(1971).
- Tyag Chakra or Circle of Sacrifice: two circles within Raksha Chakra consisting of 16 walls made of 25,942 granite tables dedicated to soldiers who fell in China and Pakistan wars and operations such as that of the Indian Peace Keeping Force in Sri Lanka.
- Rakshak Chakra or Circle of Protection: outermost circle comprising of 600 trees symbolises soldiers who ensure the territorial integrity of the nation, round the clock.
- The Param Yodha Sthal has the busts of 21 recipients of the Param Vir Chakra, India's highest military honour, with short descriptions of their acts of valour.