A fauji brat’s reply to Mr. Chetan Bhagat

Respected Mr. Bhagat,

Till date, even though I am a Fauji brat and also I have visited Jantar Mantar more than twice during the OROP Rally, I do not feel that I have earned the qualification to write on OROP. The only people who can comment on OROP, “with the head” as you like to call it, are the representatives of GoI who have some background into the issue or the ex-servicemen themselves.  Thus, though I share extensively on the issue, I am yet to write on it.

Since yesterday, though, I have had this urge, that if Mr. Chetan Bhagat (of all people), can write on OROP, why not me! However, I realize the folly in my argument in such that one fool writing on something so grave does not grant me the necessary authority to do so as well.

Thus, I will refrain from talking of OROP and instead remind you of a small incident which was viewed by a few million people who either liked dancing or liked you, when a member of the Bollywood fraternity asked you to keep your views on dancing to the minimum, given that you could not dance yourself. I hope you do not need a reminder of the day. Even if staged and planned, it was aimed to remind you of your qualification in that expertise.

In the same light today, when ex-servicemen ask of you to see the folly in your article, the cry baby in you seems to have come out saying very conveniently that you seem to have touched a “raw nerve” and asking the persons responding to you to be “civil”. Mr. Bhagat, if you are so convinced of your argument and if you have at least something logical to say, then why not answer the questions being put to you or your article? Tweeting the article again and again is no answer.

Coming to being civil, please understand that it is the ex-servicemen being civil that has kept the protests peaceful even after repeated tries by the GoI and persons like you to give them enough reason to not stay so. The fortunate (or maybe even unfortunate as it now seems) part of this whole thing is that these men who are asking for their right, are Gentleman Soldiers first and foremost and it is this that gives the likes of you the courage to write utter nonsense in the knowledge that you will get away with it. Just as you have the democratic right of publishing whatever you feel like, the others have a democratic right to question you.

Regards,

Janhvi Pant (A Fauji Brat)

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Words of a Commanding Officer of the Indian Army – REALITY CHECK for the nation

A CO in the Indian Army recently wrote:-

This is not a post for the weak hearted and Adarsh Liberals so do not go any further if you are out of your comfort zone.
It really pains a soldier’s heart if the blood of his brethren is not adequate to galvanize a nation.

This nation is so ungrateful, the intelligentsia so spineless and intellectual class so bigoted that they will get mobilised by tragedies of Peshawar, Gaza or France. However, they are immune to our own suffering. Why? I will tell you why, because it is fashionable to get associated with a global cause, it makes you look cool, it is easier to talk about it sipping a single malt in a comfortable South Delhi mansion.

I do not condone any of the terror attacks happened anywhere in the world, not even in Pakistan. However, I shall be candid : a terror attack in Peshawar wherein brethren of one enemy is killed by another has very limited relevance for me. I am aware I would be lynched for this statement but I would hold my ground.
Ask anyone who has lifted the coffin of his brother, his comrade, how heavy is the load? It has the dreams of a young wife, it has the future of his children and hopes of his parents. My dear countrymen, it is far heavier than any coffin.

Few of you will also chide me by saying that soldiers are paid to die. No sir, you are entirely incorrect. Soldiers are paid to protect the integrity of the nation. If you want canon fodder, hire mercenaries. This soldier is even denied a decent last journey, his bullet riddled remains are kept in a dilapidated parking yard in Delhi Airport as the ‘designated place’ does not have the security clearance! The same place is opened every Thursday for devotees as there is a Peer Baba located there. Thank the Lord for small mercies that his comrades in OG, will go out of their way to give him a befitting final journey.

His kids and wife are then part of an archaic system where pay stops the next day and pension starts in minimum 4-5 months albeit with arrears. Somebody ask these intellectuals do they even bother to think about a household where there will be no salary for five months but the stomach won’t stop growling, the school fee won’t stop and the electricity bill is still required to be paid.

The average youth of the nation also disappoints here, he is more bothered about mounting losses on Nestle and the two minute gruel. No candlelight march for his soldier, no white cap for his protector. Somehow, misery of Gaza always outshines misery of his own country.

Coming to polity and bureaucracy, the less said the better. If initial reports are to be believed, they are contemplating de-induction of armed forces from the areas where the encounter took place. As a result, the brothers of the slain will be denied even a chance to seek retribution.

Last but certainly not the least, the most disappointing facet, the harbinger of moral compass, the fourth estate, the Media. Death of a soldier doesn’t sell, period. So why even bother.

A soldier is aware of the dangers involved in the life he has chosen. He also understands that every other profession is as important and everybody can not fight.
Just give him dignity when he is alive and mourn for him when he fades away. That’s it, nothing more, nothing less.
I would end this note with an anecdote :
Late Lieut Saurabh Kalia who was one of the earliest casualties of the Kargil War did not die of a gun shot wound. When his body was returned by Pakistan, his eyes had been gouged out, his ears and nose had been chopped, his entire body had cigarette and electric current burn marks, and his private parts had been cut and stuffed in his mouth and his mouth was sewn up. He was alive during the entire ordeal.
Try selling the idea of ‘Aman ki Asha’ to his parents who were not allowed to see their son for one last time, try selling it to his comrades who indeed saw the body.
Reconciliation comes easy in a comfortable home, not in an unforgiving bunker.”

Special People

So, today, I sit down to blabber on this post. There is nothing specific on my mind yet. I write as it comes.

I am thinking as I write this of what exactly I will discuss in this post. After putting some thought to it, I think I’ll write about those people around me who matter to me, for one reason or the other, and who they are and just how special and nice human beings they are.  (This post might as well turn into a long series of me praising a lot of people, please be patient). Also , I am not going to be including friends in this post. Maybe some other time. This one is just for my family.

1. MOM

My mom. What to say about her. She’s just the best person around. She ‘s multi-talented. I love her singing, cooking, craft, drawing, interior decoration, her control over English, Hindi and even Sanskrit. She never cowers away from stitching a dress. Never have I seen her worry about how things will happen in time. It’s like she finds her 48 hours in our 24. She loves to read, and not light reading. She has a PhD in Psychology and still manages to master all other subjects too (except Maths, that’s her comparative weakness). Ma, you mean everything to me, I Love You.

2. DAD

He’s a great guy. Sports and brain are so his thing. He’s outstanding in Badminton and Squash and on the way there in Golf. He does maths in his head that others may not even be able to do with pen and paper and may straight away need a calculator for. He’s a very strong man on the outside but has a very emotional heart. The look on his face when he was waiting for my admission to happen during counselling for college, and the look a few days back when we were at the doctor’s office and I had just been diagnosed with Dengue are something I will never forget. I remember once, when he had hurt his foot  and it was bleeding. Seeing him in that pain had made me cry. I Love You Babba (Dad).

3. SISTERS

Vaibhavi and Aadhya, my ‘real’ siter and my ‘cousin’ sister, I love you both. Both of them  irritate me to the hilt and make me shout at them. I make them both do all the work that I should. With them, I am mostly fighting but they both are very very precious to me.  Their coming was the best thing that happened to me. May they both always be blessed.

4. ANAY JI

Anay Abbhi is my youngest cousin. He’s a cute-heart of a child and the naughtiest kid around. He loves to defy what others tell him. He is the most stubborn person around, and he just loves to tease me when he gets his way over mine. But for all this and much more, I just adore and love him. Seeing him through the window pane on the day he was born is a sight I am never going to forget. I Love You Anay.

5. BHAI

My elder brother Partha is the most frustrating brother that can ever exist. While he is at times downright rude and doesn’t care a bit to how I feel about certain things, he is still that one person I can confide everything in and turn to whenever I need sane advice. I turn to him whenever something is emotionally nagging me and I turn to him when all I need is some jokes to read and forward. For everything that you are bhai, I Love You Mars ke Praani (added on request by the younger sisters).

6. GRANDPARENTS

I realized how much they meant to me when the first of the four left us. Since then, my emotions towards them have been realized by me and have grown every-time I meet them or talk to them. When my other grandmother left too, it took me some time to realize just how much it had affected me. It is still hard for me to believe at times that both of them are gone. I still hardly talk to my grandfathers. However, a lot has changed and each time I part ways with either of them, I wish I could just put in words how much I love them. I Love You Nana, Dadaji, Nanima, Dadi.

7. MAMA/MAMI/ TAUJI/ TAIJI

Tiny mama, Neelam mami, Himanshu Tauji and Rachana Taiji,  have always had my best interests in mind and it means a lot to me. I know my acts have troubled them all often and for that, I am sorry. I wish I could just be expressive to them that they mean a lot to me and that I love them. I Love You All.

8. THE REST

A few cousins and relatives are also in the list. They are not countable and nor do I wish them to be. For all of them who have been with me in my most horrific times and who have kept me in their good books no matter what. For all of those relatives who care so much about me, I care for them a lot too. I Love You as well.

That is it for today. A sentimental post. And one I hope does not leave you frustrated with having so little sense to readers.

Take care all and a Happy upcoming Diwali.

The end of the road

Yesterday night, another one of the journeys of my life came to a dead end. For reasons of which I am still in denial my relationship came to an end yesterday.

It hurts that you give someone your everything and it does not work out.

I so want to play the blame game right now and put it all on him but I need to understand that it takes two people for anything to work or fail.

To be honest I don’t even know why I am putting this out here and not in my personal diary. But whatever be the reason, I know one thing. After nearly 3 years of blogging, I am in some ways more comfortable with my readers here than maybe even my personal diary.

To all of you who came here expecting to read a post, I am sorry you had to face a rant.

Take care everyone. And though this won’t make much sense coming from someone most probably in depression, but don’t think too far ahead in life, the more elaborate plans you make, the more it hurts when they break.

Knowing myself

This last challenge was given to me a long time ago. I’ve tried various times to write about it but have ended up feeling it to be fake and unnatural. This was because this particular challenge from ‘Yaz Rooney ‘ on my page ‘Challenge Accepted‘ needed introspection more than anything else. Here I needed to let loose all my pre-formulated thoughts, beliefs, notions etc and let my inner mind do the thinking as at the end of the day, that is what I really think.

So after a lot of thought on this, here it is finally. A story on what I think of this world, the spirit, and afterlife. I am going to keep it simple by framing the story around myself as the protagonist/antagonist.

It’s a madhouse rat-race and it all began with my conception. My birth was a result of a race being won by one in a million. Then after I came into this world, though protected from this for a major portion of my life till now, it is not too hard to realize that each and every single second of existence is a race, with others and more importantly with oneself. A million thoughts race through the mind every second, but it the one that reaches the conscious mind most quickly, that preoccupies the mind in the form of thinking. Even as I write this, there are many races taking place for each of these words to come to this form. I may not be aware of all of these or even any of these, but they exist nonetheless. How am I so sure? Introspect for a while and you would know. Sit and think about it.

As it is oft called, I was born with a pure heart. No emotions were known to me and I would learn them by training, conditioning and observing. And therefore, it is funny that each and everyone of us is nothing but a mere combination of emotions that already exist. The combination is unique in each of us, but the ingredients are the same. And to this rule, there are no exceptions.

I am tempted right now, to write about the rat race we all fight throughout our lives and regret later. But I’ll let it pass. I do not wish to convert this to a moral lecture.

Just as my birth was the entry of a new participant in this race, there are exits too. When people reach their respective end lines, they leave the race. Many of us think that a person left “too soon”, but who in this case then defines “soon” or “late”. Their track ended and so they left, there is not much more to it. Our emotions make us see much more. We feel the need to defy/justify every exit.

So what happens when someone’s race is over. Do they leave for good? I think otherwise, and this thought may purely be a figment of my emotion. Once they are done running, they stand aside and watch the others running. In hard times, they guide the ones they are attached to (by whichever emotion). For the sake of our convenience, we call them spirits, putting them together as a class. Not each one of us believes in it and the “non-believers” wish to question their existence by logic. For them, that not perceivable by the senses is not present. The Shrimad Bhagawat Gita states that that which cannot be felt, cannot be seen, cannot be heard, cannot be destroyed, cannot be created etc, is the true final power in the world. And the spirits too become a part of them.

It is thus that in our hardest of times, we function on automatic. The reactions and thoughts in such times comes from our innermost part, which is driven by our unconscious mind and by those standing in the side lines and guiding us what to do. And hence, no fall is so hard that standing up again becomes impossible. We all fall at different laps in the race, and we all get up, whether we realize it or not. The ones of us that realize we are on our feet again start running, while the others stand rooted to the spot, not moving on, as they are yet to know they can run again.

For me, the world here-after is that of peace and tranquility. We are off the race and into the quiet zone, where it is not our heart or our mind that needs to function. That place is beyond what we can think of with the limited capacities of our mind. Thus, though I have something in my mind right now to describe the world after we ‘die; (the race for us ends), I am sorry but I will be unable to put it in words, not even for myself. Let our ‘images’ of that be unique to each own. Even if you tried to put your image in words, it would be futile.

 

A Tough Choice

Here’s a very small post, with a very important question!

The mere thought of this made me cry for over an hour a few nights back. Asking you this question, my intention is not to make you go through the same pain or confusion but to help you understand your own mind and heart.

 

SITUATION 1 : You leave this world before your parent(s).

The + point – You never need to feel the loss of them going

The – point – You leave them with the pain of losing the child they gave birth to, and saw grow up.

 

 

 

SITUATION 2: They leave this world before you.

The + point – They are saved from the above mentioned pain.

The – point – You get to live through that tragedy and the life afterwards with the gap of their absence.

 

 

Which would you rather have? Bear the pain yourself and or give it to them?; or putting it differently, face death yourself first or let them face it first?

 

Please think and answer!

This new challenge

Before anything else, my next challenge, by Leo, on my ‘Challenge Accepted‘ page, is technically incorrect.

His challenge reads, and I quote, “If you and I had never met, would you have missed me in your life?”

It is technically impossible to miss someone you do not know, but I’ll be large-hearted (:p) and interpret this to mean what all I would have missed had I never met Leo, a.ka. Vinay.

Had I not known you,

I would have missed a friend.

And also challenges here,

would not have been a hot trend.

You made me believe in my poetry,

a belief I never had.

Looking back I do realize, without Leo,

this blog would have been sad.

My sweetheart header, is thanks to you,

the blog really looks nice,

So I here say thanks,

for adding to this space some spice.

The pet name JJ, you gave me,

it does sound really new.

In your friendship Janhvi too has evolved,

because friends like you are few.

How can I thank you enough,

I really wonder many-a-time.

It is solely because of you,

That this poem too does rhyme.