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Ministry of Defence17-December, 2007 17:31 IST
|Antony calls on Vietnamese Legendary Figure Gen VO Nguyen Giap|
|The Defence Minister Shri AK Antony today drove down to the modest residence of Gen Vo Nguyen Giap in Hanoi today to call on the Vietnamese legendary figure who was instrumental in defeating three of five Permanent Members of the UN Security Council- France, US and China. He was the longest serving Defence Minister of Vietnam who faced most of the incursions and invasions on the Vietnamese territory as head of the military. He served from 1945 to 1979. Gen Giap went to the same school in Hue in Central Vietnam as Ho Chi Minh and late Prime Minister Pham Van Dong.
Now in his nineties, Gen Giap appears frail but showed no signs of memory loss as he recounted vividly fond remembrances of his two visits to India when he went to New Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai and the Andaman & Nicobar islands. Gen Giap recalled the contributions of Jawahar Lal Nehru and Ho Chi Minh to provide a solid foundation to Indo-Vietnamese relations. He also recalled the contributions India has made to Vietnam during the war periods, for the unification as also for its reconstruction.
“Therefore, I feel like meeting old friends”, he told Shri Antony. Gen Giap appreciated the giant strides made by India in science & technology, especially, in IT and expressed the hope that ‘ the Indian advantage’ will also be extended to the people of Vietnam. He requested Shri Antony to convey his best wishes to the Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh.
Shri Antony said it was a really ‘ happy and exciting day’ for him as during his younger days he had read about the heroism of Gen Giap and that he was meeting him in person today. He said, Gen Giaps heroic acts were indeed lessons in warfare.
Gen Giap presented a copy of his memoir “ People’s War, People’s Army” to Shri Antony.
Sitanshu Kar in Hanoi, Vietnam.
(Release ID :34082)