How rightly did Time, the American magazine, write at that time, post Sino- India conflict of 1962, “The Indian Army needs almost everything except courage.” The COAS General VP Malik in 1999 made a statement, we will fight with what we have.
Over decades the situation remains the same and the raw courage and valour of young officers and men has proven time and again that the Indian Army has never been short of “courage”. In the recent past it was again demonstrated by Late Col Suresh Babu, MVC and his gallant men as they clashed with the PLA at Galwan on 15th June 2020.
Kargil was the first operation that was covered “live”; much to the chagrin of the troops being launched into operations.
Social Media / NGOs like Lest We Forget carry out a stupendous job of remembering each day the sacrifice of our gallant men each year and keeping the public memory alive.
The young officers just commissioned, many doing their mandatory infantry attachments; though commissioned in the “Services”; adequately demonstrated the fact that the leadership in the Indian Army was unmatched and the kill ratio of the officers is well recorded as statistical data.
The quotes of these officers, before going into assault have become famous quotes, a legacy that will keep their memories alive. The most famous of them by Late Capt Vikram Batra, PVC on being asked on a TV channel what were his feelings and he responded “Yeh Dil Maange More”; a tag line of an advertisement; displaying his courage of conviction to kill and evict the intruders at the oxygen deprived heights.
Are days of commemoration only to remember the bravado of those Killed in Action?
As responsible citizens, it is also time for us to ensure that our troops are better equipped and have the wherewithal for carrying out operations.