Homage paid to the Kargil martyrs in Drass

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Drass (Kargil), July 26 (ANI): The Kargil martyrs were paid homage at the Drass War Memorial on Sunday on the occasion of 10th anniversary of Kargil War.

Officers and jawans, as well as families of many of the martyrs, laid wreaths at the war memorial in the morning.

Over 500 Indian soldiers were killed in the Kargil conflict of 1999 when heavily armed intruders, aided by Pakistan army, crossed the line of control in Kargil, Drass, Batalik and Turtok to cut off the strategic Srinagar-Leh national highway.

" The Kargil war was started by the Pakistan in breach of the peace process which was going on between the two countries," said Lieutenant General P.C. Bharadwaj, GoC Northern Command while addressing the family members of Kargil War martyrs on Sunday.

The function, besides the Indian Army personnel, was also attended by the local residents and officials of the civil administration.

The function was an emotive occasion for all as parents and siblings of soldiers visited the peaks of Drass, where their loved ones perished while fighting to eject Pakistani raiders and camouflaged regular troops.

In the evening, the hills of Drass in Jammu and Kashmir were lit up climaxing a spectacular ceremony held here to mark the 10th anniversary of India's victory in the Kargil conflict with Pakistan.

The peaks, recaptured from Pakistani intruders, that witnessed missile firings and shellings a decade ago were lit up with torches as the darkness descended on this town near the Line of Control (LoC).

It was breathtaking culmination of the two-day ceremony held in Drass to pay homage to the 527 soldiers who achieved martyrdom here. The string of lighted dots sparkled as any necklace laid over the hills of Tololing and Tiger Hill in the Drass sector.

A half-an-hour Beating Retreat in the evening saw 10 units, representing different arms of the army and different parts of the country, performing 10 tunes. The units included Jammu and Kashmir regiment, Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry, the Gorkha Rifles and Jat Regiment, who won laurels in the Kargil war. By Parvez Butt (ANI)

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