Captain D P Ramachandran, Founder and Managing Trustee of Colours of Glory Foundation, an initiative to promote public awareness of India’s military heritage, said that this even coincides with the Madras Week celebrations. “As a part of the Military Heritage Week, there will be a 14-day exhibition from August 11 to 24 (except August 15), at the CP Art Centre, pictorially depicting the evolution of all the armed forces. Also on display will be paintings done by children on their perception of the Armed Forces, which they created during a painting competition,” he said.
Captain Ramachandran said that the piece de resistance would be a showcase of arms and artefacts. “We have a display of weapons and models of military-related artefacts such as models of aircrafts, battleships, rifles and armoured fighting vehicles. There is also a remote-controlled working model of the combat vehicles,” added the ex-serviceman.
On August 20, a military tattoo will take place at MCC Higher Secondary School, where motorcycle stunts, equestrian display and other skills will be showcased by the Armed Forces. “We have the Officers Training Academy (OTA) and the Air Wing of National Cadet Corps (NCC) on board and are in the process of tying up with the other Armed Forces such as the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force,” said Captain Ramachandran. Dr G Balaji, Assistant Professor, CP Ramaswami Aiyar Institute of Indological Research (CPRIIR), said, “The exhibition will showcase the military heritage of our country and how Chennai played an important role.”
Tracing the city’s prominent role in our country’s military history, Captain Ramachandran said, “The Army, which is the oldest of the Armed Forces, has its roots in Chennai. The first regiment of the Sepoy Army was raised in Fort St. George in December 1758, when Madras was under siege by the French. Major-General Stringer Lawrence started mass recruitment and created the Sepoy Army, even as the siege was underway.”
Youngsters like Jemima A, a city-based college student, said that such an exhibition would be interesting. “I am keen to visit the exhibition and find out more about our country’s military history and also view the weaponry on display,” she added.