India Honors Its War Heroes: 21 Largest Unnamed Islands of Andaman & Nicobar Islands Named After Param Vir Chakra Awardees
In a major tribute to India's real-life heroes, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday named 21 largest unnamed islands of Andaman & Nicobar Islands after India's 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees. The ceremony was organised on the occasion of Parakram Diwas, Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose’s birth anniversary. In a press release, the Prime Minister’s Office said, “Giving due respect to the real-life heroes of the country has always been accorded the highest priority by the Prime Minister. Going ahead with this spirit, it has now been decided to name the 21 largest unnamed islands of the island group after 21 Param Vir Chakra awardees”.
- Previously, Ross Island was renamed Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Dweep by the Prime Minister during his visit to the Island in 2018. Neil Island and Havelock Island were also renamed Shaheed Dweep and Swaraj Dweep.
- The 21 islands that have been renamed include islands such as Diglipur Island, which has been named after Major Somnath Sharma, the first-ever recipient of the PVC, and Little Andaman Island, which has been named after Captain GS Salaria.
Param Vir Chakra Awardees
- The Param Vir Chakra is India's highest military decoration and is awarded for the "most conspicuous bravery or some daring or pre-eminent act of valour or self-sacrifice" in the presence of the enemy. Information for the following profiles of the 21 awardees has been sourced from the National War Memorial website. Some of the notable awardees include Major Somnath Sharma, who led the solitary company of 4th Battalion, Kumaon Regiment, and tried to defend the Srinagar airport against Pakistani raiders in the Battle of Badgam that took place on November 3, 1947.
- He became the first-ever recipient of the PVC. Another notable awardee is Lieutenant Colonel (then Major) Dhan Singh Thapa, who commanded a forward post in Ladakh during the Sino-Indian war in 1962 and fought courageously despite being outnumbered by the Chinese troops.
The renaming of these islands is a fitting tribute to India's brave soldiers who have sacrificed their lives for the nation. The islands will serve as a reminder of the valour and self-sacrifice of these real-life heroes and will inspire future generations to follow in their footsteps. The Prime Minister's decision to rename the islands is a step in the right direction in recognizing and honoring the contributions of these brave soldiers.