Anti-Terrorism Day is observed every year on 21 May, on the death anniversary of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. He was assassinated on May 21, 1991, by the LTTE terrorists while campaigning for the Congress Party at Sriperumbudur in Tamil Nadu.
Rajiv Gandhi became India's youngest PM when he was sworn in at 40. He took over as the sixth PM of the country after Indira Gandhi's assassination in 1984. He served from 1984 to 1989.
History of this day:
Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated in Sriperumbudur, Tamil Nadu, in a suicide bombing, by a woman from the Liberation of Tamil Tigers Eelam (LTTE), a terrorist group.
The woman had explosives under her clothes and approached Rajiv Gandhi and bent down as if to touch his feet when the bomb exploded leading to his death and approximately 25 others. This is the inland terrorism that created fear and caused us to lose our PM.
Why is the day observed?
This day is observed to raise awareness about the havoc created by terrorism.
Anti-Terrorism Day is celebrated to promote peace and harmony. Terrorists feel the need to inflict disaster on innocent people either because they are brain-washed, because they believe it is their religious purpose or simply because they don't have a conscience. Whatever be their motivation, there's no denying the fact that their activities are immoral.
The day also helps us remember the sacrifices made by thousands of soldiers and policemen who fought against terrorism to protect their country and their people.
The pledge that is said on Anti-Terrorism Day:
"We, the people of India, having abiding faith in our country's tradition of non-violence and tolerance, hereby solemnly affirm to oppose with our strength, all forms of terrorism and violence. We pledge to uphold and promote peace, social harmony and understand among all fellow human beings and fight the forces of disruption threatening human lives and values."