Pune, May 30 (IANS) A soldier or an officer in uniform, whether from the Indian Army, Navy or Air Force, evokes admiration, emotion of pride and trust everywhere in the country, President Ram Nath Kovind said here on Wednesday.
“This is due to the unparalleled and unquestioning service to the nation in times of war and peace, on the border or within the country during a natural calamity. The Armed Forces represent the best of the Indian ethos,” he said at the review parade of the 134th course of the prestigious National Defence Academy (NDA) at Khadakwasla, on the outskirts of Pune.
Kovind said that the armed forces are a symbol of excellence and dedication for the entire country.
“This parade comprises cadets from all parts of India and from a variety of communities. Its harmony speaks for our essential unity as much as for our pluralism as a society,” the President noted.
Lauding the NDA, he said it is more than just a training facility, being “the crucible of valour and bravery which inculates a resolve and spirit of national service in generations of cadets and officers”.
It was because of this heritage that in December 1978, the then President Neelam Sanjiva Reddy had conferred the “President’s Colours” on the NDA, he said.
Today, the NDA cadets have become “role models for our young people, guarantors of our peace and prosperity, and guardians of our nation”, Kovind said.
“The Armed Forces are not merely about doing a job – they are about answering a calling. And this is a calling for a rare breed of human beings. I am confident that after graduating, the cadets would prove worthy successors to the unflinching and fearless officers who have preceded them,” he said.