Address by Governor at the Convocation Ceremony of the National Defence Academy for the Spring Term 2017 at Pune
Address by Shri CH. Vidyasagar Rao, Governor of Maharashtra and Tamil Nadu at the Convocation Ceremony of the National Defence Academy for the Spring Term 2017 at Khadakwasla, Pune 411023 at 9 am on 29th May 2017
Air Marshal Jasjit Singh Kler, Commandant, National Defence Academy, Rear Admiral S K Grewal, Deputy Commandant & Chief Instructor, Prof (Dr) O P Shukla, Principal, NDA, Prof (Dr) Vinay Deep, Vice Principal, NDA, Members of the Academic Committee, Officers, Members of Faculty, Distinguished Guests, Proud Parents, Members of the Media, Graduating Cadets, Ladies and Gentlemen…
It is a matter of immense pride for me to be here this morning to confer the graduation degrees on the passing out cadets of the 132nd Course. The National Defence Academy has been at the forefront for the national defence, having passed out more than thirty five thousand Officers who have served the nation with pride and distinction.
I am here today to felicitate yet another batch of young warriors, who are going to follow in the footsteps of their worthy predecessors. At the very outset, I congratulate the cadets for having crossed this milestone in their career. You are well worthy of this recognition after completing three years of rigorous training in one of the top noted military academies of the world. I will be failing in my duty, without recognizing the efforts of the trainers for their unflinching commitment in grooming you for challenges that you will confront, either on land or at sea or in the air subsequent to your commission.
I am sure you are not the only ones brimming with pride. You have made your parents proud of what you have accomplished. After all, not all parents can boast of having their sons and daughters in the armed forces, the most noblest of professions.
The nation is indebted to the parents for this, and are proud of the heritage that they have endowed their sons with.
Dear Cadets, the future is like a Tabula Rasa or a clean unwritten slate. It is for you to contribute towards national security and nation building. You have been adequately equipped to face the world and its challenges, head on.
As you face the constancy of change, you have to continue to adapt to the changes that come your way. This challenge can only be met by constant learning and experience.
Learning is often thought of as an activity, fit for the scholars behind ivory towers. Knowledge gleaned from books is of prime importance. That should not be ignored. It is a most potent weapon. Your endeavor should be to translate knowledge into action corresponding to reality. That comes from experience which can be gained only in the field. It also is gleaned from your seniors, from your teachers and mentors who have already traversed the road of experience. The secret of success lies in constant application of your learning, in day to day life. This will hold you in good stead as you move forward in your career ahead.
In a year from now, you will be Commissioned Officers. Given the internal security situation and the dark face of terrorism all over the world, you will be called upon to serve anytime and anywhere. This requires you to be in a state of preparedness always. Therefore, ‘train, train and train hard’ should be your mantra. For what learning is to the mind, training is to honing of skills. Whether you don the cap of an infantry soldier, a fighter pilot or a gunnery officer on a ship, you need skills to handle the sophisticated weapons of war. While the mind evolves strategies, the hand implements them. The mind directs and the hand delivers. I urge you to continuously broaden your new horizons, to continuously compete against yourself to achieve the best possible state of sophisticated soldiering. Only a combination of health, mind, body and the spirit will lead to optimum results and this demands rigorous training. I am sure you have it in you to achieve professional perfection.
Today, India is progressing rapidly under the able leadership of our Honourable Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi. The contribution of the armed forces in this context cannot be emphasized enough. By acting as a deterrent to our adversaries, the armed forces have ensured the prosperity of the country. There is an axiom that no economy can grow without peace and it is largely under steadfast watch of the armed forces over our borders, that peace prevails in the land. We are proud of our armed forces who have served the nation with great dignity and courage. Besides, the armed forces are a true symbol of India’s “unity in diversity”, a microcosm of secularism and national integration.
Cadets, you have been groomed to be the inheritors of this legacy. Preserve and protect it for the future generations to come. The society looks up to the armed forces as a model of discipline and commitment in the service of the nation. Guard these values at all cost. To you belongs the history of the nation, to you belongs the future. You are the ones who can ensure a better and a prosperous India. I wish you all the very best in this endeavour. God bless you.