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Defence Minister Rajnath Singh departs for 3-day visit to Russia

The Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu had invited the Indian Defence Minister to attend the Victory Parade.

Jun 22, 2020 11:36 IST
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Union Defence Minister Rajnath Singh departed for Russia today for a three-day visit to attend the Russian Victory Day Parade. He will also be holding talks on ways to deepen India and Russia's defence and strategic partnership. 

The Russian Victory Parade will be held on June 24, 2020. This year's victory parade will mark the 75th anniversary of Nazi Germany's surrender to Soviet Union during the Second World War.  It is being organised to honour the heroism and sacrifices made by the Russian people and its allies. 

The Russian Defence Minister Sergey Shoigu had invited the Indian Defence Minister to attend the Victory Parade. The parade was originally scheduled to be held on May 9 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Union Defence Secretary is accompanying the Defence Minister to Russia. 

India's tri-service contingent to participate in Russian Victory Parade 

In a first, India has sent a 75-member tri-service military contingent to participate in the Russian Victory Day Parade along with the other contingents and Russia's own contingent. The Indian contingent has already reached Russia's capital Moscow. 

India's marching contingent, which will take part in the parade, will be led by a major rank officer of the gallant Sikh Light Infantry Regiment. The regiment had fought with great valour during World War II and it had earned four Battle Honours and two Military Cross amongst other gallantry awards.

Significance

India's participation at the Russian Victory Day parade will mark tribute to the great sacrifices made by Russia and other nations during World War II. Indian soldiers had also participated in the Second World War and made supreme sacrifice. The Indian regiment will participate in the parade along with armed forces from at least 11 nations including China.

The Union Defence Minister's visit to Russia for the historic parade will further strengthen the longstanding special strategic partnership between India and Russia.

The Russian Ambassador Nikolay Kudashev tweeted wishing Indian Defence Minister Rajnath Singh a safe journey.