Sikkim pays tribute to General Bipin Rawat

Gangtok, 20 Dec (IPR): Chief Minister Prem Singh Tamang laid the wreath and paid his tribute to the Chief of Defence Staff General,Bipin Rawat, his wife and eleven other army personnel who died in the helicopter crash in Tamil Nadu recently, in a programme organised at MG Marg Gangtok today. The Chief Minister also lit the butter lamp and offered his prayers on behalf of the people of Sikkim.

The programme was organised by RajyaSainik Board in coordination with the State Government to pay obeisance to the departed souls.

A Guard of Honour and Last Post was given on the occasion by the jawans of the Armed Force 17 Mountain Division.

The Chief Minister was joined on the solemn occasion by Cabinet Ministers, MLAs, MP Lok Sabha, Chief Secretary, DGP, Heads of Departments, Secretary Rajya Sainik Board, and other dignitaries.

Likewise, the programme had the presence and participation of Army officials, Ex-Servicemen who fought the Indo Pakistan War of 1971 under 5–11 Gorkha Rifles, and members of the public.

India's first CDS General, Bipin Rawat was known for his impeccable leadership. He held a special place for Sikkim and its people as it was under his direction and signature that the Sikkim Scouts was raised. It was under his guidance that the first 968 cadets under Sikkim Scouts were recruited, which led to creation of employment opportunities for 2500 more cadets. The General always used to wear the "Sikkim Scouts" tab which is affiliated with the 11th Gorkha Rifles and used its insignia and flag along with the words Sikkim Scouts.

Along with General Rawat, it is also a matter of pride and honour that Lt Col Harjinder Singh and HavaldarSatpalRai who died during the crash had served in the Sikkim Scouts.

After the offering of floral tribute on the portraits by the dignitaries, members of the public too poured in to pay their respect to the departed souls.