PM Narendra Modi inaugurated the iconic National War Memorial in New Delhi on Monday as a tribute to soldiers who have laid down their lives defending the nation post-independence.
Speaking from the Major Dhyan Chand Stadium, he addressed the nation on the occasion.
PM Modi after speaking highly of the forces, spoke of how his government has been committed to fulfilling needs of the Defence sector and attacked previous Congress government of "criminally neglecting" the forces. He said that scams such as Bofors, VVIP Chopper deal spoke about the family's intentions towards Defence sector.
"I will take this opportunity to give some information about how the previous government used to work with respect to Defence as it is important for the youth to know. Those who called themselves Bharat Bhagya Vidhata did not stop from toying with the forces need and do injustice with children of the country. In 2009, the forces had demanded 86,000 lakh bulletproof jackets. Without the jackets, it was facing the enemy's bullets and conducting dangerous enounters. Five years have passed since 2009 till 2014 but the bulletproof jackets were not bought. It is our government which bought over 2 lakh 30,000 bulletproof jackets in 4.5 years. Wasn't it not a sin to not keep the forces bereft from jackets. Similar criminal neglect was continued by them with the forces. The Army and the National Security was made a way to make money by the previous government.
"Since they couldn't get anything from forces, they chose to forget them. Be it Bofors or (VVIP) chopper deal, all the investigations leading to one family says a lot. Now these people are making all the efforts that the Rafale aircraft doesn't come to India," he said.
Raksha Mantri Nirmala Sitharman also addressed the rally earlier on Monday, speaking about the War Memorial.
"The war memorial will keep reminding us of the valour, pride and dedicated selfless service of our soldiers and will inspire others to pay their respects and be soldier themselves. This memorial is marvelously designed. Today we can proudly say we have added one more pilgrimage place for every citizen to pay respect to our brave soldiers."
WATCH: From OROP To Super-speciality Hospitals And Women Fighter Pilots To Gallantry Awards, PM Modi Lists His Government's Efforts To Benefit India's Armed Forces Personnel - Past, Present And Future - At National War Memorial Inauguration