On Friday, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh was in the capital to lay the foundation stone for Thal Sena Bhawan during which he bore witness to an inter-faith prayer ceremony. He along with army chief MM Naravane participated in a "bhoomi poojan" ceremony for the the Bhawan, which is being constructed as the new Army headquarters in Delhi's cantonment area.
Images of the ceremony were shared on social media by news agency ANI. In the image, priests from different religions can be seen standing on stage and reciting prayers.
The image has been evoking many warm responses on social media with many praising the secular and harmonious nature of the Indian army.
It happens only in Indian Army.— Sasmita Mahapatra (@SM49142278) February 21, 2020
True spirit of India— Zorawar Gill (@ZorawarGill2) February 21, 2020
Good, This is the idea of India. We have to learn from Army, there is no discrimination on basis of caste and religion.— Amit Kumar Jain (@Amitjain5633) February 21, 2020
हिन्दू मुस्लिम एकता हमारी सेना में दिखती है जय हिंद जय हिन्द की सेना🙏🙏🙏— Jonny lever (Parody) (@Indian71280833) February 21, 2020
The Bhawan, a multi-storied green building, will be constructed opposite the Manekshaw Centre at Delhi Cantonment within the next five years. Spread over 39 acres, it will accommodate over 6,000 personnel and have a residential complex. The Army Chief, who currently occupies an office in New Delhi's South Block, will also have an office at the Thal Sena Bhawan.
According to a report by ANI, the office complex and parking space would be spread across an area of 7.5 lakh square meters and will house 6014 offices for 1684 military and civilian officers along with over 4,000 staff. The construction work is expected to generate at least 2 lakh hours over the course of the next five years, leading to job creation among youth.