Jaipur, June 20 (IANS) The birth centenary of war hero Lt General Sagat Singh, who led the operation to liberate Goa from Portuguese rule, will be celebrated across Rajasthan from July 8-14 this year, Southwestern Command chief Lt Gen Cherish Mathson said here.
Speaking on while addressing a curtain raiser event organised to announce the celebrations on Wednesday Lt Gen Mathson said, “Lt Gen Sagat Singh was a real hero who rose from a soldier to General rank making a strong contribution to Indian Army.”
His birth centenary celebrations shall take place under the aegis of Sapta Shakti Command at Jaipur on July 14 which will include unveiling a bust of General Sagat Singh and a seminar and equipment display.
Motivational lectures shall also be organised by the Army in various schools in Jaipur, Chittorgarh, Dholpur and Jhunjhunu from July 8-11, Lt Gen Mathson added.
Lt Gen Sagat Singh was born on July 14, 1919 in Kusumdesar village of Churu district in Rajasthan. He started as a Naik in the elite Ganga Risala of the erstwhile Bikaner State, was promoted as Naib Subedar, got commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in the Ganga Risala and rose to the rank of Lieutenant General.
He was the man behind the success of Operation Vijay in 1961 which aimed at liberating Goa from the Portuguese.
The parachute brigade led by Lt Gen Sagat Singh played a prominent part in the liberation of Goa, and his men were the first to enter Panjim on December 19, 1961, ending 451 years of Portuguese rule.
Later during the Indo-Pak war of 1971, his Corps made a famous advance to Dhaka during liberation of Bangladesh and also participated in Meghna Heli Bridge Operation, an important aerial operation during the war.
In fact this operation stunned the world’s armies. It emerged as Lt Gen Sagat Singh’s crowning glory as he used Mi4 helicopters to fly over the Meghna river as his Corps relentlessly attacked and defeated the Pakistani forces, crossing river lines and terrain considered impassable. His innovative use of helicopters remains unparalleled.
The Indian Army shall request the Goa government, the Eastern Command as well as Bangladesh government to celebrate his birth centenary, Lt Gen Mathson said.
“We shall also request the state government and Goa government to incorporate the stories of bravery and valour from his life in textbooks,” he said.