Gangtok, 30 Oct (IPR): Rashtriya Ekta Diwas and Rashtriya Sankalp Diwas were observed today at a function held at Manan Bhawan in Gangtok. While Rashtriya Ekta Diwas or National Unity Day marks the birth anniversary of Late Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel, a great freedom fighter and nation builder, Rastriya Sankalp Diwas is observed every year to mark the death anniversary of Late Smt Indira Gandhi, former Prime Minister of India.
The two important events are observed simultaneously across the country on 31 Oct every year. However, in Sikkim, the event was observed a day in advance as 31 Oct is a State Holiday owing to an important Buddhist Festival, Lhabab Deuchen.
State Chief Secretary, Shri A.K. Shrivastava, was present on the occasion as chief guest. The function began with the CS and the dignitaries lighting butter lamps on the portrait of Late Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and Late Smt Indira Gandhi. The CS then administered the Rastriya Ekta Diwas Pledge to the officers and staff assembled in the hall.
Chief Secretary, Shri A.K. Shrivastava, in his address paid rich tribute to Late Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel and threw light on the life and times of the freedom fighter and nation builder. He enlightened the audience on the illustrious journey of Late Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel from being a student of Law to becoming one of the stalwarts of the freedom movement and later a founding figure of independent India. He mentioned the role of Late Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel in the unification and consolidation of the nation. The Chief Secretary also shared that Late Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel came to be known as the ‘Patron Saint of the Civil Servants’ as he was instrumental in establishing the three cadres of the All India Services.
He also remembered former Prime Minister Smt Indira Gandhi as leader of great stature. He mentioned that her death anniversary is observed across the country as Rashtriya Sankalp Diwas.
Earlier, Joint Secretary cum State Protocol Officer, Home Department, Smt Mingma Diki Sherpa, delivered the welcome address and threw light on the observance of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas.
Similarly, Under Secretary, Protocol, Home Department, Shri Sunny Kharel, gave an introduction on the observance of Rashtriya Sankalp Diwas.
The event was marked by patriotic song presentations on the theme of Rashtriya Ekta Diwas and Rashtriya Sankalp Diwas by artists of the Cultural Affairs and Heritage Department.
The programme concluded with vote of thanks proposed by Under Secretary, Protocol, Home Department, Shri Pema Wangchen Bhutia.
Also present in the function were Additional Chief Secretary, Shri S.C. Gupta, Principal Secretary, Finance cum Development Commissioner, Shri V.B. Pathak, Commissioner-cum-Secretary, Land Revenue & Disaster Management Department, Shri Tsegyal Tashi, Secretary, Home (Protocol), Shri Pratap Pradhan, and officers and staff of all the Departments situated at the Manan Kendra Secretariat.
Later in the afternoon, the CS flagged off March Past contingents from Manan Bhawan complex to Titanic Park in M.G. Marg. The contingents comprised of Sikkim Police, NCC, Scouts & Guides and Sikkim Police Pipe Band. The Chief Secretary along with officers and staff of Home Department also participated in the March Past. The day’s events came to an end with band display by the Brass Band of Sikkim Police at Titanic Park in M.G. Marg.
The Rashtriya Ekta Diwas pledge was simultaneously administered in all the State Government Departments, Public Sector Undertakings and District Headquarters across the State.