05 December, 2008

हमारे जवान: एक चित्रण

मेरे IIMC के एक मित्र अंकुर ओगरा ने कल एक मेल भेजी थी, उसके पिता ने लिखी थी, वो इंडियन एयरफोर्स में पायलट रह चुके हैं। मुंबई में हो रहे हमलों के दरमयान उन्होंने लिखा था। वो मूलतः कश्मीर के रहने वाले हैं पर अब दिल्ली में पूरा परिवार रह रहा है।

अनुवाद इसलिए नहीं किया है क्योंकि मेरा मानना है की अनुवाद में कई बार मूल भाव खो जाता है।

Half Man Half Boy
The average age of the army man is 23 years। He is a short haired, tight-muscled kid who, under normal circumstances is considered by society as half man, half boy. Not yet dry behind the ears, not old enough to buy a beer in the capital of his country, but old enough to die for his country.

He's a recent school or college graduate; he was probably an average student from one of the Kendriya Vidyalayas, pursued some form of sport activities, drives a rickety bicycle, and had a girlfriend that either broke up with him when he left, or swears to be waiting when he returns from half a world away। He listens to rock and roll or hip -hop or bhangra or gazals and a 155mm howitzer.

He is 5 or 7 kilos lighter now than when he was at home because he is working or fighting the insurgents or standing guard on the icy Himalayas from before dawn to well after dusk or he is at Mumbai engaging the terrorists। He has trouble spelling, thus letter writing is a pain for him, but he can field strip a rifle in 30 seconds and reassemble it in less time in the dark. He can recite to you the nomenclature of a machine gun or grenade launcher and use either one effectively if he must.

He digs foxholes and latrines and can apply first aid like a professional. He can march until he is told to stop, or stop until he is told to march. He obeys orders instantly and without hesitation, but he is not without spirit or individual dignity. His pride and self-respect, he does not lack. He is self-sufficient। He has two sets of combat dress: he washes one and wears the other. He keeps his water bottle full and his feet dry. He sometimes forgets to brush his teeth, but never to clean his rifle. He can cook his own meals, mend his own clothes, and fix his own wounds. If you're thirsty, he'll share his water with you; if you are hungry, his food. He'll even split his ammunition with you in the midst of battle when you run low.

He has learned to use his hands like weapons and weapons like they were his hands। He can save your life - or take it, because he's been trained for both.He will often do twice the work of a civilian, draw half the pay, and still find ironic humor in it all. He has seen more suffering and death than he should have in his short lifetime.

He has wept in public and in private, for friends who have fallen in combat and is unashamed to do so।

He feels every note of the Jana Gana Mana vibrate through his body while at rigid attention, while tempering the burning desire to 'square-away' those around him who haven't bothered to stand, remove their hands from their pockets, or even stop talking। In an odd twist, day in and day out, far from home, he defends their right to be disrespectful. Just as did his Father, Grandfather, and Great-grandfather, he is paying the price for our freedom. Beardless or not, he is not a boy. He is your nation's Fighting Man that has kept this country free and defended your right to Freedom. He has experienced deprivation and adversity, and has seen his buddies falling to bullets and maimed and blown. And he smiles at the irony of the IAS babu and politician reducing his status year after year and the unkindest cut of all, even reducing his salary and asking why he should get 24 eggs a week free! And when he silently whispers in protest, the same politician and babu aghast, suggest he's mutinying! Wake up citizens of India! Let's begin discriminating between the saviours of India and the traitors!

- Flt. Lt. Rajiv Tyagi


  1. bahut achcha likha hai ...ise jaari rakho

  2. very well written...

    They are our infantrymen. The finest in the world. No other soldier has ever fought at these heights. At 15000ft, they can't move with ease. In Batalik, there are no tracks. Climb. Clamber. Crawl. A soldier carries a week's ration, ammunition, a 5.56mm assault rifle or a mortar or a rocket launcher. He carries over 20 kgs on his back as he pulls himself up on this rugged, cruel terrain.

    He doesn't sleep. He doesn't have time to eat. He doesn't have time to urinate. Life is not what it is. Life is a shell. It is the terror of death. It is the courage of facing it. It is fear, raw, unalloyed, unrelenting.... the enemy is up there, somewhere hidden. It can see you, can track you down like a rat, can pick you out so effortlessly...and yet these men move, slowly but with determination to fight for the nation. To die for the nation.

    You know how it feels to be up there in the cold, cold mountains, carrying a heavy backpack with a gnawing fear that you will never see your eight-year-old daughter. That sweet little thing with a ponytail and a smile that lights up your world. You may not hear her giggles, see her climb your shoulder, run around, throw her dolls in anger, paint the walls in doodles.... You will not be there for her.

    You know what fear is. That is the fear. Not being there. Death is not what matters. What matter is that you will not matter anymore. And yet the soldiers go up the hills, like the charge of the light brigade, never asking questions, never expecting an answer. They know they have a duty, they have a pledge, they have a promise to keep. Their tryst with destiny.

    It is not easy to imagine a soldier, an infantry man's life up there in Batalik, where the wind can sear your windpipe, chill your brains, make your eyes weep with pain and lungs cry out in sheer exhaustion. Brave. That is what these soldiers are. Brave in the face of death. Brave in the face of fear. Facing bullets. One hundered & Eighty of them are dead. Many more will die. Let not their death go waste, unacknowledged.

  3. पूजा मै उस परिवार से हूँ जिसमे मेरे कजिन brother आर्मी में है ,श्रीलंका की शान्ति सेना में मेरे ताऊ जी अपनी टांग खोयी थी ओर उनके बेटे मेरे बड़े भाई इस वक़्त कश्मीर में पोस्टेड है ..जब कभी वो आता है हम ढेरो बाते करते है .आर्मी की निराशा ओर हिम्मत ओर कठिनाई के बारे में ,कश्मीर में हालात इतने सरल नही है जितना हम लोग समझते है पर सरकार कई चीजे अनदेखी कर देती है ...उसके दोस्त को मैंने देखा था जिसका एक हाथ ओर शरीर का काफी बड़ा हिस्सा सिर्फ़ मॉस का लोथडा है...ओर उसमे अब भी बहुत बड़ा जज्बा है....इसलिए समझ सकता हूँ कई बातें .

  4. ek ek lafz sahi aur sil ko chu gaya,aise jawano ko salam.

  5. उन दिनों की याद आती है जब मेरा एक कजिन जो उम्र में मुझसे छोटा है, मुझे ख़त लिखा करता था कि क्यों वो अपने देश के लिये शहीद हो जाना चाहता है और मैं कहता था कि भाई देश के लिये जियो, मरना क्यों चाहते हो और वह सहमत था। आज वह आर्मी में मेजर है और निराश है आर्मी की हालत देखकर। छोड़ देना चाहता है। जब मेजर जैसे पद पर कोई निराश हो सकता है तो सोचिये सिपाहियों की निराशा का स्तर क्या हो सकता है।

    और हां, बंगलौर में दिये जलाकर सारे जहां से अच्छा गाने का प्लान तो चौपट हो गया। एहतियातन सरकार ने किसी भी तरह की रैली या गैदरिंग पर रोक लगा दी है। वैसे आज हमनें अपने आफ़िस कैंपस में मोमबत्तियां जलाईं और सारे जहां से अच्छा गाया।

  6. बहुत अच्छ। िलखा हैं ।

  7. just words...simple words....composed in afluent english-thats all.the words that just deserve some comments and टिप्पणी like these...

    in reality no one is bothered what happens to these infantrymen-either alive or dead!!!


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