Mumbai, Sep 29 (IANS): Maharashtra will soon get its first army museum and a state war memorial to commemorate the glorious achievements of the Indian Army and showcase the experiences of its bravery, prowess and restraint, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray announced on Wednesday.
Planned to come up in Mumbai, the museum - a part of which will be opened to public by August 15, 2022 - will be dedicated to the 75th anniversary of India's Independence.
The decision was announced after Thackeray presided over a meeting with GOC, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Goa area, Lt Gen S.K. Parashar and Brig Achalesh Shanker, BMC Commissioner I.S. Chahal, Principal Secretary, Urban Development, Bhushan Gagrani, CMO officials Ashish Kumar Singh, Vikas Kharge and others.
Thackeray directed the formation of an advisory and design committee with the participation of army officers to decide the look of the museum and what should be included in it.
He suggested that people visiting the museum should get information and a feel of how army bunkers look, the survival of soldiers in extreme weathers like minus degrees in Siachen Glacier or the walking through scorching deserts with heavy weapons, and the dense jungles.
The museum would highlight success stories of the heroism of the defence forces, the soldiers and officers from the state who participated and fought in various wars, display the weapons and ammunition, tanks, planes, boats, medals, uniforms and rank structure of the soldiers.
Besides, there will be replicas of aircraft, boats, helicopters, tanks placed there with historical information about medal winners and their heroic exploits, and an amphitheater.
The CM directed an activity area for the youth to get information and guidance on physical fitness, motivate them to join the armed forces, along with some basic practical courses.
"A system should be in place to provide a rich and wholesome experience to the visitors and tourists through comprehensive information on the overall strength of the Indian Army and the defence forces," he urged.
Presently, Maharashtra has one full-fledged dedicated Cavalry Tanks Museum in Ahmednagar, said to be the first of its kind in Asia.
It has on display military tanks like the British Mark I, one of the earliest and devastating tanks used in the World War I, armored class of the type used by the Brigadier Reginald E. H. Dyer, notorious for the Jallianwala Bagh massacre, and the Stuart used by Indian Army at the Zojila Pass in 1948.