Paraplegic Rehabilitation Centre (PRC), Kirkee

Genesis

1. The war memorial at Jodhpur Military Station was conceived by Lt Gen KS Jamwal, AVSM, VSM**, then GOC Desert Corps. The memorial is dedicated to the unsung heroes, who had fought gallantly for their motherland. Its simple and elegant design consists of drivers design motifs, each of which complements the central theme of ‘Sacrifice’, ‘Valour’ and ‘Steadfastness’.

The Memorial

2. The Memorial is highlighted against the skyline at the apex of a long ridge emanating form Jodhpur city. At one end of the ridge is the majestic ‘Umaid Bhawan’ with the elegant ‘Konark War Memorial’ counterpoised at the other end.

3. The imposing setting with a commanding view of the Jodhpur cantonment, results in the memorial becoming a befitting tribute to the martyrs who made the supreme sacrifice for the motherland.

Design And Construction

4. When the need for a war Memorial was articulated, a number of young designers at the School of Architecture, Ahmedabad were approached for a suitable scheme for a grand monument befitting of the worthy cause. The final design is the handiwork of Mr Amit Sheth of Mind’s Eye Creative Pvt Ltd, Ahmedabad.

5. The monument having a lofty Pillar indicating the ‘Heights of Greatness’ attained by our valiant soldiers, Water - body - signifying ‘Tranquility’ and ‘Serenity’. Stone Columns depicting ‘Strength and Bravery’ and Greenery and Landscaping providing ‘Peach’ and ‘Ambience’.

6. It took the hundred odd men and tradesmen of Engineer Units of the Corps, nine months of relentless effort to complete the War Memorial on 15 Feb 04.

7. The memorial has a conglomeration of three distinctive motifs, Namely the Plaza at the entrance, the Pathway in the centre and the Main Memorial on top.

8. The Plaza. The distinctive feature of the Konark War Memorial is the Plaza Complex, a diamond shaped structure having sidewalls clad with Kesariya green marble stone slabs, which stands at the entrance of the Memorial. On each of the Kesariya stone slabs is carefully inscribed a story of valour or homage of the battles fought in the Desert Sector during the Indo - Pak Wars of 1965 and 1971. In addition, a number of slabs have been inscribed with the names of gallantry award winners and the martyrs.

9. The Pathway. The long pathway with polished Kota stone, punctuated at intervals with Yellow Jaisalmer stone steps, is another fascinating feature of the memorial. The visitor, while walking along the Pathway, gets an opportunity for contemplative thought regarding duty, honour and sacrifice. The visitor ascends the steps of the pathway to the Main Memorial, thereby symbolically reaching for the rarefied heights of achievement of the brave soldiers of the years gone by.

10. The Main Memorial. The classically square-shaped base of the Main Memorial is of Kesariya green marble and is centred on a circular water body with access being provided to it by a slatted stone way. This base is adorned by twenty columns of Jodhpur pink stone on its periphery. This arrangement of columns symbolizes the Sentinels of the Army protecting the Indian State. A disc made of Kesariya green marble is at the centre from which rises the majestic Central Pillar, The regal pillar of Kesariya green marble is crested by the Ashoka Lion emblem, elaborately carved in Jodhpur stone. The Jodhpur stone columns are eight-sided while their bases are four sided. On each side of the base is embellished a yellow Jaisalmer stone slab on which is carved the insignia of a unit or formation which has participated in operations in the Desert Sector.

11. The Ashoka Pillar is surrounded by a pattern of 24 stone rays bridging the water body, which denote the Ashoka Chakra motif. Of these, four rays made of yellow Jaisalmer stone depict the four Cardinal Points.