By Brig. VK Atray
Pune. 29 December 2020. All roads in Pune now lead to the Bombay Engineer Group & Centre which will be the cynosure of all eyes for the next five days.The Pune Railway Station and the city’s airport are watching the arrival of guests from all over the country and abroad, who shall be attending the Bicentenary of Bombay Sappers .
The Col Commandant Lt. Gen Michael Mathews returned from Mumbai after receiving the Sailing Expedition back. Indian Army Ocean Sailing Expdetion Mumbai – Okha – Mumbai was conducted from 15 Jan – 28 Jan 2020. The expedition sailed in four Seabird Class boats lead by Lt Col MK Singh, to commemorate bi-centenary celebrations of “The Bombay Sappers”. The expedition covered a distance of approx. 800 nautical miles over a duration of 13 days. The team comprised of six officers, two Junior Commissioned Officers and 35 Other Ranks .
The BEG Commandant Brig. MJ Kumar was seen inspecting the Bombay Sappers Museum which has undergone a major transformation.He even coached ladies of Centre as to how to guide the visitors in the Museum. It is an air of expectancy everywhere. The soldiers are practicing the drills led by the officers. The Centre is getting all dressed up for the event of the century.
In the evening all serving and retired officers present were hosted by the soldiers to a Bara Khana at Bhagat Pavilion. And not to be left behind the ladies at this time were hosted at an entertainment programme by the first lady of the Centre Mrs MJ Kumar.
The cycling expedition which had begun from Delhi finished successfully at the Bada Khana. The expedition passed though Jaipur-Udaipur-Ahmedabad-Thane and finally reached Pune . It will officially conclude at the Bombay Sappers War Memorial at Pune on 30 th Jan 2020. Three cyclists jpined them at Jaipur. The expedition traversed a distance of approximately 1650 Km ,thus making it one of the longest organized cycling events in the country.
On the agenda for the day was also the Bicentenary Heritage Walk which included the upgraded Group Museum Complex encompasses seven buildings of each tending to different facets of the Group. Nanda Hall, Awardees Gallery, the YO’s Gallery, the Old Commandant’ Office, the Generals’ Gallery, the JCOs/OR gallery, the Shaheed Gallery, the Sports Gallery, the Band gallery, the Regimental Panel Block and the UN Missions gallery all took the guests down the memory lane and pages of history of the Centre.
The Day1 at the celebrations ended on a happy positive note and left us asking for more. Waiting eagerly for the Day 2 to begin.