Tribune News Service
New Delhi, January 20
The Centre on Wednesday has asked states and Union Territories (UTs) to ensure strict observance of silence on the Martyrs’ Day—January 30—in the memory of all those who have sacrificed during freedom struggle.
In a letter, dated January 18, to all the states and UTs the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) said, that on January 30, every year, two minutes’ of silence will be observed at 11 AM throughout the country—in the memory of those who sacrificed their lives during the struggle for India’s freedom.
In the letter, while giving instructions, the MHA said: “Silence should be observed and work and movement stopped for two minutes throughout the country at 11 AM on January 30. Wherever feasible, the commencement and termination of the two minutes’ silence period should be indicated by the sound of a siren or Army guns.”
Adding specifics, the Ministry went on to add: “Sirens should be sounded from 10.59 hours till 11.00 hours and after two minutes, all clear sirens should again be sounded from 11.02 hours till 11.03 hours. This procedure may be adopted where sirens exist.”
At places, where no signal systems are available, the MHA has asked to give suitable instructions to all concerned for observing the silence for two minutes at 11 AM.
The MHA has noted in the letter that in the past, it has been observed that while two minutes’ silence is observed in some offices, the general public goes about its occupation in the ordinary course, “unmindful of the solemnity” of the occasion.
“The State/UT Governments are requested to ensure that the Martyrs’ Day is observed with due solemnity. They may issue instructions to all educational institutions and Public Sector Enterprises under their control for the observance of the Martyrs’ Day accordingly. Talks, speeches on freedom struggle, national integration may be organised in hybrid mode,” the letter read, while insisting that the guidelines and Standard Operating Procedures (SoPs) issued from time to time regarding COVID-19 need to be strictly adhered to while observing the silence.