Three nought three

Born to a happy family

To a generation of street cricket and TV

Injected with Coercive Morality

while still fantasising a swim in the sea

 

Vision of my father’s chest swell with pride

Erratic Advices, Some Rushed Choices

made me enlist for the War as my mother cried

Slept dreaming of solving the nation’s crisis

I left my home wide eyed

 

My dreams were lobotomised

Made to forget my human existence

My rifle became my most valued prize

I become a machine despite my resistance

 

My childhood heroes were dead

Dali and Fellini were long forgotten

Now I dreamt of Stabbing People with my Bayonet

The artist in me was called down trodden

 

They snatched away my paintbrush

Replaced it with an M – 14

Obliterating  memories of my childhood crush

Even the kiss in our late teens

 

Yellow, crinkly and unread lies my Edgar Allen Poe

As I am forced fed etiquette

To eat, to greet, to put on the damndest fake show

Whilst Ripping out their souls to desecrate

 

I sacrificed everything to serve my beloved nation

Commanding Officers made me sweat blood

While they pimped my country right to her castration

Washing away their conscience in the torrential flood

 

Ordered to kill and maim

A masochistic competition

Everything became

Immune to Attrition

Snatching children from their mothers, unashamed

 

Brothers, Fathers, Sons and Daughters

Bodies in Neatly Wrapped Coffins

Everyone leaked of viscous red water

And I get colourful ribbons with special pins

 

My cross-hairs on some random unlucky bastard

In some other world we might have a joke to share

Now his mutilated face brings my camp to laughter

Dimming the loss of our own bombardier

 

They Say we won the war

Politicians Make speeches and smile

Everyone rejoices in delusions of grandeur

The Corpses lie still,  making the soil fertile

 

I lost my mother’s gifted amulet

I do not remember my village tree

I am nothing but a bullet

Sir, My name  is three nought three!
– Arnav Bhattacharya

Advertisements

Happy? Independence Day

Below are the words of a citizen of India on the occasion of India celebrating its 70th Independence Day. The words show what any person who is sensible enough to see things as they are feels about the issue that should be one keeping this nation awakein thought. (Warning: Long post and brutally honest. Reader discretion is advised)
​Today as India celebrates her 70th Independence Day, as everyone sings – अय मेरे वतन के लोगों, we all get emotional and express our gratitude to the freedom fighters; I along with the Freedom Fighters express my gratitude to our Security Forces – Officers and men in uniform who ensure India is and remains an Independent state!

As we continue to hear on News Channels about the unrest in J&K, few of my friends asked, if I know what the issue is all about. Up till this unrest in the valley, which has been continuing for around 40 days I was confident enough to answer this question in the affirmative but not any more. 

No, no, no, no…………… If you are thinking that I am ignorant of things which have happened since Pakistani Marauders (read Mujahideen led by Pakistan Army) attacked the Princely State of Jammu & Kashmir in September 1947 you are mistaken; what makes me wonder is our approach towards all the actors involved in this conflict.

I was always intrigued by the way Government of India in particular is dealing with this issue. Simla Agreement (Declaration signed by Zulfiqar Ali Bhutto and Indira Gandhi held in 1972) states that all outstanding issues between India and Pakistan will be resolved bilaterally; still both countries try to take this issue to various International forums. India in particular keeps repeating this point. My question is, are we trying to say this to ourselves more than to others. We say this in SAARC Summits, in the UN, in ASEAN, almost everywhere. Every political party says, “we need to take a tough stand against Pakistan”, and that tough stand has always been, “we strongly condemn this cowardly act”. This leaves me exasperated every time. 

Since 1989, we have been hearing slogans of आज़ादी in the valley. What आज़ादी, or आज़ादी from whom or what, nobody in the Union Government dares to ask this question. Also, who do they ask this question to? More importantly, I don’t understand, why the people of Kashmir (especially South Kashmir) want आज़ादी and not the people of Jammu and Ladakh. If it were a political problem, why the people from Jammu and Ladakh don’t shout the slogans? Earlier, I thought the youth was misled because they had aspirations and no opportunities however after the killing of Hizb – ul Commander Burhan Wani and the demonstrations following it, I am forced to think again. 

What adds fuel to fire is the statement of Ex-Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who says, “these demonstrations, stone pelting is not because the state is lagging behind in development, education and opportunities, rather it is for political oppression of the youth”. Mr. Abdullah, you must be joking! Why on earth would any sensible person demonstrate violently because a terrorist was killed in an encounter? You don’t stop there, you go on to say that, every Friday, even in your neighboring mosque, slogans are heard for आज़ादी. My question to you Mr. Abdullah is what did you do when you heard these slogans? Was it not your duty as a Former CM, a sitting MLA, to immediately take action? Immediately go that mosque and address the gathering? Or, you too were thinking of आज़ादी, even at the time when you were asking people to vote for you, when you said to the people of J&K that, you will discharge your duties, “even if it means to be killed by terrorists”?  You wanted the Union Government to hold a dialogue with Hurriyat Conference(APHC), and in the same speech you said, “Hurriyat may think that they are driving it or the terrorists like Syed Salaudin may think that they are driving this demonstration, but they are just a cog in the wheel”. Oh come on, you can’t be dumb enough to say such contradictory things! Moreover, whom does Hurriyat Conference represent? Definitely not the people of J&K; they keep on boycotting the elections, don’t have a manifesto, don’t do anything constructive. I am not sure, if you meant the terrorists are the people whom they represent. They are the mouth piece of Hizb – ul – Mujahideen, JKLF etc. so they may be representatives of terrorists. 

We are hearing all sorts of non-sense from the MPs and MLAs. The Chief Minister says, “I was not aware that this operation is going to take place”, “Security Forces didn’t know that Burhan Vani is among the terrorists involved in the gun battle”, “Intelligence report was not shared with me”. A CPI(M) MLA says in the State Assembly that, “Security Forces should have caught Burhan alive and not killed him”, “If he would have been caught alive, there wouldn’t have been protests”. Ghulam Nabi Azad said in parliament, “Police has fired pallets at the demonstrators”

Are all you representatives of people in your senses? Ms Mufti, IB says, intelligence report was shared with the State Government 8 days earlier. Were you not interested to go through it? It is just not possible that in an operation which involved J&K police, State Government was not aware. Did you people expect the security forces to give Burhan Wani a bullet proof jacket and keep fighting others, so that, whenever Burhan was tired of firing at Security Forces, he could surrender and also not get killed in the gun battle? Mr. Azad, have you seen a pallet? It is used in air guns to burst balloons (needless to mention that, it doesn’t even kill sparrows). 

I take your statements as an act of insult to our security forces. Please, please, please don’t play your political games at the cost of the Security Forces. None of you were even bothered to visit the injured people of Security Forces in Srinagar Base Hospital. Needless to say, you don’t even talk of the 12 Security Personnel who were killed in this violence. Do you know, how many men in uniform this country has lost in Jammu & Kashmir? Or is it immaterial for the community of politicians?

Mob drowns a Police Inspector; you call it demonstration? Hand Grenade is hurled and bullets fired at Police Station in Yaripora, none of you even bother! We saw videos of security personnel being dragged out of armored vehicles and beaten to death on news channels. It was a shameful sight! Police pickets were burned with Policemen inside it, you all were busy rationalizing it! Did you all not feel for a moment, if you would be able to look in the eyes of your own bodyguards and the Commandos who provide you Z+ Security Cover. 

We also have Human Rights Activists, and the Presstitutes, who talk about the encounter as Extra Judicial Killings, Army Excesses etc. I do not blame them. I urge the Security Forces to forgive them, as they do not know what they are saying! Forgive them for deliberately not considering men in uniform to be Human, for turning a blind eye towards Kashmiri Pandits (the only community which is forced to become a refugee in their own country); I know the list is endless! 

It is shameful that we do not stand by the people who stand for our security. We do not have any consideration for them. May it be pay commissions, may it be OROP, may it be even freedom to operate. Irony is, rogues can use Freedom of Speech, and the Army can’t even have AFSPA! We all celebrate Freedom, but most fail to understand that Freedom is not Licentiousness! No wonder, the youth is not attracted to the Armed Forces as a career. Today, I saw a report in Tribune saying, “Spike in early retirement in armed forces”. Needless to mention, we are already short of men in uniform.

I urge Prime Minister Modi to deal with Terrorists and their safe heavens with iron fists. We have been backstabbed enough! It is time to learn from our mistakes. Even if it means to pay them back in the same coin. Just by saying, “PoK too is an integral part of India”, won’t change the position of LoC and LoAC. Why can’t we have Myanmar like offensive action in PoK?

I express my gratitude to our Men in Uniform, for all that they have been doing for ages and doing right now. For the standing guard at the most inhospitable locations, braving the enemy, the weather and of course Human Rights Activists and Presstitutes. We are inbebted to your families, who suffer the pain of separation along with you. Who unlike us, don’t have the privilege to call you every now and then. For whom no news is good news. You along with your family are graceful enough not to talk of / express pain (physical or emotional). May be, you are the only ones who know what pain is, what emotions are, any you live these emotions intensely enough to not talk about it. We take our perceived pain / sorrow to nonsensical levels even on social media; the most common being Heart-Break. You or your families don’t even lose grace when you take bullets on your heart! 

Thank you for your service to the country!

Those who have faded away (Soldiers do not die; they fade away) – Find peace!
Written by Mr. Partha Sarathy Baytha

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.”

The Last Letter

From far-away, at the border, a soldier writes to his beloved, a letter….

Dear Sunita,

Your love is the best thing that has happened in my life. All throughout this war, it’s your love that has kept me going, but I fear tonight, that this battle might be my last. My darling, this shall be my last letter to you. Goodbye. God bless you.

Yours for ever,
Harshit.


and his beloved’s reply was thus:

Dear Harshit,

Your heart is safe with me, so fight with valor when you enter the battlefield, but try not to be so melodramatic. I shall wait for you, with pride. I remember what you said to me. If you mention it’s your last letter, it means you will be home soon.

Yours always,
Sunita


This post has been written for my team, The Bengaluru Bloggers’ Bistro as part of the IBL – the Battle of Blogs, sponsored by WriteupCafe.com. Join in at the official website http://www.indianbloggersleague.com and the page on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/IndianBloggersLeague