October 21: Police Commemoration Day
The Police Commemoration Day is observed on October 21st every year to pay homage to the Police Martyrs. The day commemorates supreme sacrifices of ten policemen while defending borders with China in 1959. It was observed in all Police Lines throughout India to mark memory of these gallant Police personnel killed on duty during the year.
The Police Commemoration Day was instituted at the Annual Conference of Inspectors General of Police of States and Union Territories held in January 1960. Since 2012, Police Commemoration Day Parade is being held at the National level at the Police Memorial, Chanakyapuri.
So far since Independence, 34,418 Police personnel have sacrificed their lives for safeguarding the integrity of nation and providing security to people of this country. During last one year, from September 2016 to August 2017, 383 Police personnel have laid down their lives.
Why Police Commemoration Day is celebrated?
Till autumn of 1959, Indian Police personnel were responsible for manning 2,500 mile long border of India with Tibet (now China). On October 20, 1959, three reconnaissance parties were launched from Hot Springs in North Eastern Ladakh in preparation for further movement of Indian expedition which was on its way to Lanak La. While members of two parties returned to Hot Springs by afternoon of that day, third one comprising of two Police Constables an Porter did not return.
All available personnel were mobilized early next morning in search of missing personnel. At about mid-day, Chinese Army personnel were seen on hillock who opened fire and threw grenades at party led by. Since there was no cover, most personnel were injured. Ten brave Police Personnel attained martyrdom and seven others sustained injuries. The seven injured were taken prisoners by Chinese while the remaining managed to escape.