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Police Commemoration Day

Police Commemoration Day
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The Police Commemoration Day is observed on October 21st every year. The day commemorates the sacrifices of ten policemen while defending our borders...

The Police Commemoration Day is observed on October 21st every year. The day commemorates the sacrifices of ten policemen while defending our borders with China in 1959. Indian Police personnel were responsible for manning the 2,500 mile long border of India with Tibet until the autumn of 1959.

On October 20, 1959, three reconnaissance parties were launched from Hot Springs in North Eastern Ladakh in preparation for further movement of an Indian expedition which was on its way to Lanak La. While members of two parties returned to Hot Springs by the afternoon of that day, the third one comprising two Police Constables and a porter did not return.

All available personnel were mobilized early next morning in search of the missing personnel. A party of about 20 Police personnel led by Karam Singh, DCIO, proceeded ahead on horseback, while other followed on foot in three Sections.

At about mid-day, Chinese Army personnel opened fire and threw grenades at the party led by Karam Singh. Since there was no cover, most personnel were injured. Ten of our brave Police Personnel attained martyrdom and seven others sustained injuries.

The seven injured were taken prisoners by the Chinese while the remaining managed to escape. Bodies of the ten personnel were returned by the Chinese only on November 13, 1959, a full three weeks after the incident. These bodies were cremated with full Police honours at Hot Springs.

The Annual Conference of Inspectors General of Police of States and Union Territories held in January 1960 decided that October 21 would henceforth be observed as ‘Commemoration Day’ in all Police Lines throughout India to mark the memory of these gallant personnel who were killed in Ladakh and all other Police personnel killed on duty during the year.

Since the year 2012, the Police Commemoration Day Parade is being held at the National level at the Police Memorial, Chanakyapuri. So far since Independence, 34,418 Police personnel have sacrificed their lives for safeguarding the integrity of the nation and providing security to people of this country. During the last one year, from September 2016 to August 2017, 383 police personnel have laid down their lives.

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