Uttam unveils statue of Col Santosh Babu, proposes Military Museum in Suryapet

Hyderabad, June 8: Congress MP Capt N. Uttam Kumar Reddy unveiled the statue of Galwan Valley war hero Colonel Santosh Babu in Kodad town in Suryapet district in the presence of Santosh Babu’s parents Bikkumalla Upender and Manjula and other dignitaries.

Colonel Santosh Babu, the commanding officer of the 16 Bihar regiment, was one of the 20 Indian troops who were martyred in a fierce hand-to-hand battle with Chinese soldiers on June 15, 2020, in the Galwan Valley of Ladakh. Colonel Santosh Babu, displaying exceptional courage and leadership, fought valiantly to safeguard India’s territorial integrity and sovereignty. To honour his extraordinary bravery, he was posthumously conferred with the prestigious gallantry medal, Mahavir Chakra.

Speaking on the occasion, Uttam Kumar Reddy expressed his deep sense of pride as he and Late Colonel Santosh Babu were both alumni of the esteemed National Defence Academy (NDA). Saluting Santosh Babu’s parents, he said that the sacrifices made by Colonel Santosh Babu and the 20 jawans would forever be etched in the hearts of all Indians. Their heroic actions in defending the nation’s borders against aggression will be remembered with utmost respect and gratitude, he said.

Uttam Kumar Reddy also addressed the ongoing border tensions with China, raising concerns over the continued intrusion into Indian territory. He alleged that China has occupied approximately 1500 sq km of land, a blatant violation of international norms and the principles of peaceful coexistence. Despite 27 meetings of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination on India-China Border Affairs (WMCC) over the past four years, the impasse at the Line of Actual Control (LAC) remains unresolved. The most recent meeting was held on May 31, underscoring the need for steadfastness in dealing with China’s territorial ambitions.

Uttam Kumar Reddy drew attention to China’s audacious attempts to rename places in Arunachal Pradesh, falsely claiming them as part of their territory. Such actions not only challenge India’s sovereignty but also heighten tensions in the region. Despite numerous talks at the highest military and diplomatic levels, China has shown little willingness to de-escalate the situation, necessitating a cautious approach and heightened vigilance from India, he said.

 The Congress MP, through the Parliamentary Defense Committee, proposed the establishment of a Military Museum in Suryapet which should be named after Colonel Santosh Babu. The museum should serve as a repository of their inspiring life stories, showcasing the valour and sacrifices of all Param Veer Chakra and Mahavir Chakra awardees in the country. He said all schools and college students should be encouraged to visit the museum to instil a deep sense of patriotism and foster a strong sense of national pride and appreciation for the sacrifices made by the armed forces. (Maxim News)

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