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OPERATION EAGLE – WHOLE GUN

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Richard Nixon and Indira Gandhi, 4 November 1971
Richard Nixon and Indira Gandhi, 4 November 1971 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
This map contains my estimates of the units in...
Image via WikipediaSPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – ESTABLISHMENT NUMBER. 22 – OPERATION EAGLE – LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH 1971:
OPERATION EAGLE 1971 – ABOUT GUNS, VICTORY, AND GALLANTRY AWARDS – THE MILITARY ACTION IN CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS

SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – ESTABLISHMENT NUMBER. 22 – OPERATION EAGLE – LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH 1971 – GALLANTRY AWARD: 

Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India had initiated liberation of Bangladesh during 1971 with military action in Chittagong Hill Tracts. This battle plan is known as Operation Eagle. 

‘ POORVI STAR ‘ AWARDED IN INDO-PAK WAR OF 1971 :  

On the 3 rd of December 1971, The Pakistani Air Force(PAF) struck a number of Indian airfields. By midnight, India was officially at war with Pakistan. Two weeks later, the war was over. The Indian Army had overrun erstwhile East Pakistan(Bangladesh) and had taken 93,000 POW s. It was one of the swiftest military campaign in recent history.    

BANGLADESH LIBERATION WAR – The Indo-Pak War of 1971 and the Birth of Bangladesh are very significant achievements of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. As I was then serving in an Establishment under the Cabinet Secretariat, I had direct and personal understanding of her Foreign Policy Initiatives. She had personally approved our military Operation in Chittagong Hill Tracts. In the conduct of this War, we had faced a very critical moment and it needed her personal intervention and a decision that she alone could make. I rendered my services and had overcome the challenge posed by that critical situation. The importance of this situation could be understood as it needed an intervention from the Prime Minister. I am now asking the Government of India to recognize my GALLANT response in enemy’s territory without any concern for my personal safety.

 

This War is memorable to me for several reasons. 1. I had actually proceeded to an active combat zone without my personal weapon/gun. 2. I was actually recommended for a ‘Gallantry Award’. I was recommended for ” VIR CHAKRA ” and the award citation did not go beyond the Office of The Director of Medical Services(ARMY), Medical Branch of Adjutant General’s Office, Army Headquarters and did not reach the Military Secretary’s Branch(Army) Ministry of Defence in time and the award was not granted on technical grounds. But 12 years later, my Formation Commander still remembered the role I had played and gave his appreciation in a formal letter. 3. I have shown gallantry without firing a bullet and I had received appreciation from the enemy soldiers that we had captured. I shall narrate my war-time experience in short stories now and then as the information is still ‘ classified ‘.  

Lieutenant Governor of Andaman & Nicobar Islands(December 1985 to December 1989) – Lieutenant General(Retd) TS Oberoi, PVSM, VrC., former General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Headquarters Southern Command, Pune, former Inspector General, Special Frontier Force, former Commandant, Headquarters Establishment No. 22. He is the tall person in this photo wearing dark brown turban. I knew him since 1971. Under his able leadership, the Liberation of Bangladesh had commenced in the year 1971 during the Indo-Pak War.Apart from his military wisdom, he took a good care of all men under his Command. While I was proceeding to Chittagong Hill Tracts, he had individually greeted all the members of my team and had delayed the departure of aircraft to ensure that a hot breakfast was served to all the men boarding the aircraft. He paid personal attention to all the aspects of the military mission to ensure the well-being of men apart from achieving success in accomplishing the military task. The sense of warmth he radiated is easily felt when we meet him in person. His grandson provided me the link to this photo. Photo Credit – Trishna-Ajay-Picasa Web Album.
The remarks made by Lt Col B K Narayan on May 13, 1972 in my Annual Confidential Report for 1971-72 are as follows:”A very conscientious and Tough MO who worked hard during the Bangladesh OPs. He did very well and showed Maturity which was beyond the call of duty. I have recommended this Officer for a gallantry award for which he deserves eminently. He is physically Tough and cheerful. Is a fresh entrant with less than 2 years of Service and yet he displayed capability and confidence.
I was trained in the use of a 9 mm SMG or Sten Gun. I had chosen to march into enemy territory without my personal weapon to defend myself. I did not throw away my weapon and I did not surrender my weapon to the enemy which are crimes under law. War is a team effort. My contribution to this team effort is not based upon firing bullets from my Sten Gun. I had totally discarded any concerns about my personal safety and worked for the success of the team. I have shown Courage by not carrying this Sten Gun and in following my team like a shadow and confronting the enemy as a TEAM.
I was trained in the use of a 9 mm SMG or Sten Gun. I had chosen to march into enemy territory without my personal weapon to defend myself. I did not throw away my weapon and I did not surrender my weapon to the enemy which are crimes under law. War is a team effort. My contribution to this team effort is not based upon firing bullets from my Sten Gun. I had totally discarded any concerns about my personal safety and worked for the success of the team. I have shown Courage by not carrying this Sten Gun and in following my team like a shadow and confronting the enemy as a TEAM.

 

As an Officer of the Indian Army, I received training in the use of a 9 mm Sub Machine Gun popularly known as ‘ Sten Gun ‘ or ‘ SMG’ (” Carbine, Machine, Sten “) and had always passed in my weapon training tests. It is a devastating close-range weapon. It is a compact, light weight automatic weapon firing pistol ammunition and it would fire without any lubrication. The personal weapon that was issued to me was held in the Unit and is generally taken out for range practice and weapon training. Being a Medical Officer, I also spend a lot of time away from my Hospital and provide medical cover during troop training and exercises. In 1971, as the war clouds started gathering, I started spending more time away from the Hospital where I am actually posted.As the tensions started mounting, my formation was asked to get ready for deploying troops and to get them ready for the war, they had to be moved and re positioned at locations closer to the border.When the airlift of troops began, I was far away from the Hospital and had to board the aircraft with combat ready troops without my personal weapon. Brigadier TS Oberoi, our Commander was present at the airfield during this predawn flight and he was personally supervising very minute details and was making sure that the men were treated well. He gave orders that the troops could not be asked to board the plane until they were served a hot breakfast. He was personally shaking hands and gave encouragement to each one of us. Being a doctor, they were all used to seeing me without a personal weapon and my Brigadier also did not raise any objection when I got into the plane without my gun. After having reached the border location, I was still hoping that I could manage to get a gun for my personal protection. Officially, still there was no war and my expectation was that finding a gun would not be much of a problem. When I had checked and asked for a ‘SMG’ , the gun for which I had prior weapon training, I was told that they had none to issue. I was asked to carry an assault rifle and many Infantry Officers told me that they love the rifle better than the light and compact SMG. I accepted the gun in spite of its heavy weight and bulky ammunition. I was not yet attached to the Battalion with which I would actually participate during the operation. Soon, the basic battle plans were revealed and the most important detail was that we would operate on a ‘ man pack ‘ basis. That means there would be no vehicles and we literally carry every thing on our backs and move as a column and we were cautioned that we would not be resupplied for the first seven days of the war. We should be self-sufficient in all aspects for one whole week which includes fighting the enemy. I had arrived at this border village with my bedding, books, clothes etc., and was not knowing anything about the type of operation that was in store for me. I decided to leave every thing at the regimental Quarter Master Stores and proceed on foot with the men with a back pack. I had my team of medical assistants and I had to assign them to different companies. Then I had the problem of my medical supplies for the battle. I had to carry every band-aid, dressing, pills, medicines that I would need. Nothing else would be supplied in the early and most difficult phase of the war. My medical assistants could only carry the load for their company role. I had to support the Battalion Headquarters and all other support personnel. I took a deep look at my medical supplies. Then I made my decision. I decided that I would rather go for the war with my medical mission and totally forget about defending myself during the war. I made a decision to return my gun , my bulky ammunition and I would be able to serve my men better if I have my medical supplies and I truly need more of it to protect others and there was no room to worry about my personal safety. In the first conference with my Battalion Commander, Col BK Narayan, that was the very first time I had met him in my life, I told him that nothing else really matters to me other than providing and caring for the men during combat and I would be happy to lift an extra load of medical supplies rather than carrying a gun to protect myself. Col.Narayan could immediately understand my decision and in the first battle briefing he had announced that the Adjutant would defend the doctor for the entire duration of the operation. Captain Kottayam Chacko Kurien, an Officer of Jewish faith had accepted this additional responsibility with great seriousness and he had solemnly pledged that I would be the last person to get killed in the Unit during the war in which I had marched everywhere along with the men without my personal weapon.  

I had never met Brigadier.TS Oberoi after he had bid me farewell at the airfield. He got a promotion to the rank of Major General and moved to New Delhi and I spent my time on the Himalayan frontier. In 1983, he was the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief at Headquarters Southern Command, PUNE and since I was serving under his Command, I sent him a formal letter mentioning that I was seeking release from Army Service.He immediately wrote back to me and I am pleased to quote a few lines from the letter that I had received from him:  

1.” Major R. Rudranarasimham of Army Medical Corps………..was closely associated with my organisation during 1971 Indo-Pak War, thus, I would highlight certain commendable traits of this officer during this period of national crisis which certainly deserve befitting recognition on his relinquishing the Army.  

2. During the Indo-Pak War the officer was a medical officer with regular troops. He rose to the call of duty and displayed tremendous courage and total dedication to his duty. He carried out the given task with perfect organizational acumen and professional knowledge. He weathered tremendous physical and mental stress with utmost zeal and remained cool and composed during the operations. For this display of gallant qualities in the face of enemy the officer was recommended for a gallantry award but was not among the fortunate ones to receive it………….”  

The letter signed by Lieutenant General T S Oberoi, PVSM, VrC dated 14 Feb 1983 is still in my possession and it lets me celebrate the Victory in the 1971 War.  

    

Remarks of Lieutenant General T S Oberoi, PVSM, VrC, General Officer Commanding-in-Chief,Headquarters Southern Command Pune 411001.He had remarked about my participation in the Indo-Pak War of 1971.
General Sujan Singh Uban, Special Frontier Force
General Sujan Singh Uban, Special Frontier Force and The Liberation of Bangladesh.

 

THE PHANTOMS OF CHITTAGONG : THE FIFTH ARMY IN BANGLADESH :  

Major General ( Retd ) Sujan Singh Uban, AVSM, the former Inspector General of Special Frontier Force had authored a book titled ‘The Phantoms of Chittagong : The Fifth Army in Bangladesh’. He had narrated the military exploits of his Force while operating in the difficult terrain of Chittagong Hill Tracts during the Indo-Pak War of 1971. He did not discuss the role of Indian Army Medical Corps and the Medical Plan for his Fifth Army in Bangladesh.  

The Flag of Indian Army Medical Corps. The AMC personnel are Combatants. The professional Service rendered inside enemy territory and showing courage in the face of enemy action deserves appropriate recognition. Gallantry Awards are not merely intended for firing bullets.
The Flag of Indian Army Medical Corps. The AMC personnel are Combatants. The professional Service rendered inside enemy territory and showing courage in the face of enemy action deserves appropriate recognition. Gallantry Awards are not merely intended for firing bullets.

THE SPIRITS OF SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE:

U.S. President Richard Nixon, and the Secretary of State Dr. Henry A. Kissinger had opposed this military action to initiate the Liberation of Bangladesh during 1971. However, this political opposition had not undermined the purpose of the multinational military alliance/pact. Soon after the Liberation War, we were happy to extend our cooperation to the Nixon administration and had planted electronic listening devices to gather intelligence inside the occupied territory of Tibet.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Spirits-of-Special-Frontier-Force/362056613878227

Related Blog Posts : 

Please view the related blog post titled ‘Indira Gandhi – A Flame that Got Extinguished’ 

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2010/04/06/indira-gandhi-a-flame-that-got-extinguished/  

1. The Art of Battlefield Medicine   

2. Award of Gallantry Awards- Indo-Pak War of 1971. 

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2010/04/03/award-of-gallantry-awards-indo-pak-war-of-1971/  

3. The Medical Plan for Fifth Army in Bangladesh-The Experience of Madhurya in Chittagong Hill Tracts   

4. The Fifth Army – The Untold Story from Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 18, 2009  

5. The Phantoms of Chittagong – A Story from Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 17, 2009  

6. The Spirit of a Jew – Revisiting the Birth of Bangladesh – February 10, 2009  

7. India and Iran – What is the Connection ? – January 28, 2008  

8.Sangram Medal 1971 – A Story that I Shared with the Director General of Armed Forces Medical Services – November 22, 2007  

9. Liberation War of Bangladesh – Fallen Heroes on Both Sides – October 28, 2007  

Dr. R. R. Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S., 

Ex – Service Number. MS-8466, Rank. LIEUTENANT/CAPTAIN  AMC/SSC  

Medical Officer South Column Operation Eagle 1971

Headquarters Establishment No. 22  C/O  56  APO 

 

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SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – WHOLE SCHOLAR

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GLORIOUS QURAN – SURAH VIII – SPOILS OF WAR, VERSE NUMBER 61: “AND IF THEY INCLINE TO PEACE, INCLINE THOU ALSO TO IT, AND TRUST IN ALLAH. LO! HE IS THE HEARER, THE KNOWER.”

THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO SAINT MATTHEW, CHAPTER 5, VERSE NUMBER 9: “BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS, FOR THEY WILL BE CALLED SONS OF GOD ”

OPERATION EAGLE 1971 – A SERMON FROM GLORIOUS QURAN AT KAPTAI :
The military operation - Operation Eagle 1971 in Chittagong Hill Tracts- was inclined towards PEACE.
OPERATION EAGLE 1971 IN CHITTAGONG HILL TRACTS IS INCLINED TOWARDS PEACE. WE HAD DELIVERED PEACE TO PEOPLE OF BANGLADESH.

 Operation Eagle 1971 was conceived by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi to deliver peace to the people of Bangladesh who had earlier declared their independence from Pakistan. I had the good fortune to serve under the Command of an Islamic Scholar who had performed Hajj and who had retained the entire book of Holy Quran in his memory and a true master of Islamic religious tradition and rituals of worship. Peace is the greeting of the Righteous. The Righteous while engaged in war are inclined towards Peace. My South Column Infantry Unit Commander of Operation Eagle, Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan belonged to the Regiment of Artillery and during the time I spent with him I learned about the peace traditions of Righteous Muslims. Kindly read my personal tribute to this Islamic Scholar who had served Indian Army in its Olive Green Uniform. 

Dr. R. R. Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S.,

Ex – Number  MS-8466  CAPTAIN  AMC/SSC

Medical Officer South Column Operation Eagle

Headquarters Establishment No. 22  C/O  56  APO

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2007/09/22/a-sermon-in-kaptai-bangladesh/

 

OPERATION EAGLE – WHOLE SERMON

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Quran

 

GLORIOUS QURAN SURAH VIII ‘SPOILS OF WAR, VERSE 61 : “And if they incline to peace, incline thou also to it, and trust in Allah. Lo! He is the Hearer, the Knower.”

” Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called sons of God “.( The Holy Bible,The Book of Matthew, Chapter 5, verse 9)

” (This is) a Scripture that We have revealed unto thee, full of blessing, that they may ponder its revelations, and that men of understanding may reflect “.(Holy Book of Quran, Surah XXXVIII, “SAD” verse 29)

SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – ESTABLISHMENT NUMBER. 22 – OPERATION EAGLE – LIBERATION WAR OF BANGLADESH 1971:

 

OPERATION EAGLE 1971 – A SERMON IN KAPTAI BANGLADESH

Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister of India had initiated Liberation of Bangladesh during 1971 with military action in Chittagong Hill Tracts. The battle plan of this military action is known as Operation Eagle. She had conceived this battle plan to bring peace in that region. She was inclined towards peace. She wanted to deliver peace to people of Bangladesh who had earlier declared their independence from Pakistan. During Operation Eagle 1971, I had served in South Column, an Infantry Unit Commanded by Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan. He was a great Islamic Scholar. He had explained to me that PEACE is the greeting of Righteous people.

  

OPERATION EAGLE 1971:The Flag of The Regiment of Artillery of Indian Army. This is a story about a Gunner, an Officer of The Regiment of Artillery who had commanded an Infantry Unit during India-Pakistan War of 1971 and had planned and executed Infantry Assaults on Enemy Posts to Liberate Bangladesh. His Unit was the first to receive the Gallantry Awards of Vir Chakra during the Liberation War of Bangladesh.
The Military Operation in Chittagong Hill Tracts during Indo-Pak War of 1971 aimed at restoring Peace and to help Bangla Muslims to live in Dignity. My Unit had captured Kaptai and this Dam was not targeted for inflicting any kind of damage.
OPERATION EAGLE 1971:The Military Operation in Chittagong Hill Tracts during India-Pakistan War of 1971 aimed at restoring Peace and to deliver Peace to Bangladesh Muslims to help them live in Dignity. My Unit had captured Kaptai and this Dam was not targeted for inflicting any kind of damage.

 

My Unit never discussed any Battle Plan that required blowing up the Dam over Karnaphuli River at Kaptai.
OPERATION EAGLE 1971:My Unit never discussed any Battle Plan that required blowing up the Dam over Karnaphuli River at Kaptai.

AN ISLAMIC SCHOLAR WHO SERVED IN OLIVE GREEN UNIFORM:

A personal tribute to Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan, the Regiment of Artillery

I was in college from 1962 to 1965 and had obtained an undergraduate degree in Bachelor of Science from Osmania University, Hyderabad. I remember this period as the Golden Age of immortal Mohd. Rafi whose melodies still fill my ears. I grew up in this cradle of Urdu language Culture and had acquired my love for ghazals and qawaalis. I had spent time in Lucknow, a crown jewel in the Urdu speaking world, where you meet in the market place, ordinary folks who speak in tones that have made the language famous for its sweetness. Much later, I had served in the Land Forces of The Sultanate of Oman and took my first lesson in Arabic language. My love for Urdu and my Knowledge of Arabic language pales when I write about this Scholar and language expert whom I had met in India during 1971. He passed away on Sunday May 2, 2004 in Bahrain where he had worked for over 20 years as the Head of the Translation Department at the Bahrain Archives. This is not a tribute about his academic accomplishments, the books that he had published, his military career or about his famous friendly relationship with President Gamal Abdel Nasser and President Anwar Sadat of Egypt. I am writing this tribute to recognize his personal qualities and the values that he had promoted. I am writing this tribute to recognize him as a “peacemaker”.He represents a symbol of hope and the light that he had shown may lead us on to a path of peaceful co-existence.

I met Lieutenant Colonel.B K Narayan; he hails from  Karnataka, and he grew up as a Hindu, while he served in Indian Army in the Olive Green Uniform during the period of ” The Liberation War of Bangladesh ” in 1971. He had the unique distinction of commanding an Infantry Unit in the conduct of War while he had belonged to The Regiment of Artillery. I have not known a ‘GUNNER’ who could plan and execute Infantry Attacks on Enemy posts. Colonel Iqbal Singh, the Chief of Staff at the Force Headquarters also belonged to The Regiment of Artillery but the role played by Lieutenant Colonel B K Narayan as an Infantry Commander during War is exceptional and has no comparisons that I am aware of. I had the opportunity to converse with him for extended periods of time and came to know his admirable personality. It is not the knowledge of Arabic language that has made him unique and sets him apart from all other language experts but he is special because of his love for Islamic Culture and his ability to project the deep understanding of that Culture when he spoke to others. He had performed the holy pilgrimage of hajj and had observed all the rituals of that spiritual journey like a true and devout Muslim. When he narrated his hajj experience, I could know the sense of joy and the purity of his intentions. His observance of hajj was genuine, real to its core.

Col Narayan was able to quote Quran from his memory and would convey his understanding of the verses with great clarity. I had personally witnessed his amazing performance in a little town called KAPTAI, on the banks of Karnaphuli Lake, Rangamati Division of Bangladesh. He had conducted the Friday Worship Service for the local Bangla Muslims and delivered a sermon which was received with great appreciation by the worshipers. His job in Uniform did not impose any obligation to organize such an event. he held that prayer meeting entirely on his own initiative and it was purely an expression of his love to worship in the Islamic tradition and it also affirms his faith that the worship of God is not limited by one single tradition. The Friday Worship Service was held at the State Guest House in Kaptai where I had stayed after my Unit had captured Kaptai. It had a large Conference Room. Col Narayan had contacted the Muslim Clerics of the local Masjid and they were absolutely delighted when they met him. His Scholarship and devotion to Islam had captivated them and they had immediately agreed to convene the local congregation at the Guest House and organize the Friday Worship Service. The Conference Hall got totally packed with worshipers. I could watch the proceedings directly from my room in the State Guest House. The Bangla Muslim Community of Kaptai were truly appreciative of Colonel Narayan and his military campaign for bringing Peace and Joy to their Community. 

I knew Col Narayan’s great admiration for Arab people. He had always described them as peace-loving people. He knew this as a fact and it was based upon his understanding of Islamic Culture and traditions. I would describe Col B K Narayan as a God’s humble servant. It is important to remember and pay tribute to such “peacemakers” as we can achieve true peace through reflecting and understanding the revelations from the Holy Scriptures of all people. The Regiment of Artillery of Indian Army must record this historical contribution made by a Gunner officer who had served as an Infantry Commander during the Indo-Pak War of 1971.    

 
OPERATION EAGLE 1971:Major General Sujan Singh Uban, Inspector General of Special Frontier Force, was my Commander during Operation Eagle 1971 but he made no mention about ‘The Sermon in Kaptai’ in his book.

OPERATION EAGLE 1971:THE SERMON IN KAPTAI, BANGLADESH. We had helped the Bangladesh Muslims to regain their freedom and dignity.The India-Pakistan War of 1971 and the Birth of Bangladesh are very significant achievements of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. As I was then serving in an Establishment under the Cabinet Secretariat, I had direct and personal understanding of her Foreign Policy Initiatives. She had personally approved our military Operation in Chittagong Hill Tracts. In the conduct of this War, we had faced a very critical moment and it needed her personal intervention and a decision that she alone could make. I rendered my services and had overcome the challenge posed by that critical situation. The importance of this situation could be understood as it needed an intervention from the Prime Minister. I am now asking the Government of India to recognize my GALLANT response in enemy’s territory without any concern for my personal safety.

Related  Blog Posts :

http://bhavanajagat.wordpress.com/2010/04/03/award-of-gallantry-awards-indo-pak-war-of-1971/

1. Liberation War of Bangladesh – Fallen Heroes on both sides – October 28, 2007

2. About Guns, Victory, and Gallantry awards – Bangladesh Liberation War of 1971 – October 23, 2007

3. Sangram Medal 1971 – A Story that I shared with the Director General of Armed Forces Medical Services – November 22, 2007

4. India and Iran – What is the Connection ? – January 28, 2008

5. The Spirit of a Jew – Revisiting the Birth of Bangladesh – February 10, 2009

6. The Phantoms of Chittagong – A Story from Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 17, 2009

7. The Fifth Army – The Untold Story from Chittagong Hill Tracts – August 18, 2009

8. The Medical Plan for Fifth Army in Bangladesh – The Experience of Madhurya in Chittagong Hill Tracts

9. Award of Gallantry Awards – Indo-Pak War of 1971

10. The Art of Battlefield Medicine

Electricity generated at Kaptai helps to operate Chandraghona Paper Mills near Kaptai.An engineer who had worked in the Paper Mills at Chandraghona, a Bangla Muslim had helped my Unit during our military operation in Chittagong Hill Tracts.When our Unit reached Kaptai, the engineer happily returned to his home. I went and visited the Paper and Rayon Fiber Mill at Chandraghona.
OPERATION EAGLE 1971:Electricity generated at Kaptai helps to operate Chandraghona Paper Mills near Kaptai.An engineer who had worked in the Paper Mills at Chandraghona, a Bangla Muslim had helped my Unit during our military operation in Chittagong Hill Tracts.When our Unit reached Kaptai, the engineer happily returned to his home. I went and visited the Paper and Rayon Fiber Mill at Chandraghona.

Lieutenant Governor of Andaman & Nicobar Islands(December 1985 to December 1989) – Lieutenant General(Retd) TS Oberoi, PVSM, VrC., former General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Headquarters Southern Command, Pune, former Inspector General, Special Frontier Force, former Commandant, Headquarters Establishment No. 22, Commander Operation Eagle 1971. He is the tall person in this photo wearing dark brown turban. I knew him since 1971. Under his able leadership, the Liberation of Bangladesh had commenced in the year 1971 during the Indo-Pak War.Apart from his military wisdom, he took a good care of all men under his Command. While I was proceeding to Chittagong Hill Tracts, he had individually greeted all the members of my team and had delayed the departure of aircraft to ensure that a hot breakfast was served to all the men boarding the aircraft. He paid personal attention to all the aspects of the military mission to ensure the wellbeing of men apart from achieving success in accomplishing the military task. The sense of warmth he radiated is easily felt when we meet him in person. His grandson provided me the link to this photo. Photo Credit – Trishna-Ajay-Picasa Web Album.

Dr. R. R. Narasimham, B.Sc., M.B.B.S.,     

Ex –  Number. MS-8466, Rank. LIEUTENANT/CAPTAIN  AMC/SSC

Medical Officer South Column Operation Eagle 1971

 

SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – WHOLE NIRVANA

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I belong to ‘The Land of Gautama Buddha’ and I had whole heartedly pledged my support to His Holiness Dalai Lama and to the people of his Land and I firmly believe that we should seek and give our support for a ‘ FREE TIBET ‘.
 

 

  

 

  

Buddham Saranam Gachhami  

Dhammam Saranam Gachhami  

Sangham Saranam Gachhami 

 

 

  

 

 

This entry is dedicated to the loving memory of those brave men who had sacrificed their lives while nurturing fond hopes to win freedom for TIBET and they cherished a dream to preserve the Tibetan Identity.

For India is the Land of Gautama Buddha, we have a duty to defend Tibetan Identity.

 

Pradesh.State of Andhrainfluence of Buddha on our hearts and minds.Acharya Nagarjuna,another great Teacher lived in the present  India is the blessed Land where Lord Gautama Buddha had lived and preached.His great compassion and noble qualities made a great impact on our character and our identity as Indians.The symbols such as the National Flag and the National Emblem that we have chosen to represent us speak volumes about the long-lasting

  

I had the good fortune to visit Buddhist temples known as ” GOMPAS ” and got acquainted with the Buddhist religious traditions for over four years while I lived with Tibetan Buddhists.I had also visited Tibetan Camps at Bylakuppe and Mundgod in the State of Karnataka.In December 1974,when I had arrived in Secunderabad,I thought that I am posted to a military station away from my camp life with Buddhists.The motto of our military formation in Secunderabad is ” BASH ON REGARDLESS “.I reached Secunderabad from the Himalayan frontier with the hope that I could bring my wife and my daughter from Kadapa where they had been living while I was serving at a field location where families are not permitted to live.As I arrived at my new Unit,the first thing that I was told was that I need to immediately proceed on an exercise and that I am not allowed to bring my family to Secunderabad as my services are urgently needed for the exercise.I dutifully took my place in a military convoy and after a few hours my vehicle went past the government quarters where my parents lived while my father worked as Principal of the Nagarjuna Government College in NALGONDA.I reached the exercise location near NAGARJUNA SAGAR and that was my first visit to that area even though I had lived in Andhra Pradesh for a fairly long time.I took the opportunity to visit the historical site of Acharya Nagarjuna’s ‘VIHARA’.Buddha had left his wife and son in the middle of the night and abandoned his life of comfort in a royal palace as he desired to find the “TRUTH”.I had no intention to travel in the foot steps of Gautama Buddha,but I chose to stay away from my family if that could help His followers to reclaim their lost possessions and preserve their identity.Even today when I look back,I do not regret the time I spent away from my family and my mission to support Tibetan Buddhists was indeed a serious one.I was willing to put my life on-line if that could make a difference in the lives of those Buddhists who needed my services.I want to share the following essay which was published in ‘The Ann Arbor News’ on Thursday,October 14,1999 and hopefully this essay may convey you the passion with which I had served to support the followers of Gautama Buddha: 

  

DON’T NEGLECT TIBET FOR THE SAKE OF MAKING MONEY IN CHINA 

The United States-China relationship has naturally come under a critical review because of the nuclear espionage charges.It is irrelevant if China has actually benefited from the sensitive information that the U.S. has lost.What is far more important is the fact that the U.S. has lost its ability to keep sensitive information secure. 

Presidential candidate George W.Bush has very correctly pointed out that the U.S. needs to prepare against a potential military threat that China might pose. 

A review of the U.S.-China bilateral relationship should take us back 30 years to the time it actually began.The relationship,from the beginning,has no solid foundation.In spite of the huge trade and commerce relationship that the U.S. built up with China over these years,there is a basic lack of trust. 

The reason for this mistrust is political.The Chinese political system derives its strength from the ideology of communism.The U.S. essentially adheres to the values of democracy,freedom and liberty. 

China, as of today, is not a free society.Its political philosophy does not inspire us and is not trustworthy.Whatever the U.S. business investments may be,whatever the market reforms that China has introduced in recent times may be, there is a huge gap in terms of our political ideologies. 

Communism and democracy cannot become good partners in a bilateral relationship. 

The reason that I believe would end the U.S.-China bilateral relationship is the problem of Tibet. 

The identity of Tibetan people could not be destroyed by all these years of Chinese oppression.The passion of Tibetan people for their freedom could not be subdued by prolonged, brutal occupation. Tibetan people are brave and courageous. They are willing to pay the price to regain their land and liberate it. They have the strength, will power and commitment to achieve this goal. 

I witnessed this fact when I marched with hundreds of Tibetans through dense inhospitable forests for three months some years ago. 

This was not a camping expedition.We had sick people and severely injured people who were sent to hospitals.We had beautiful people who lost their lives in those remote forests and they lay buried or cremated there. Their sacrifices are etched into my memory. 

The only reason for taking that risk to suffer loss of life is the issue of winning back Tibetan freedom. 

I also had an opportunity to speak with hundreds of Tibetan boys.Each one of them had a clear idea of their national identity and a compelling desire to win their freedom even if they had to pay for it with their lives. 

The U.S. should understand that the issue of Tibet is not going to fade away. 

When China occupied Tibet, the U.S. sent its citizens to help these people to plan their resistance.The U.S. sent tons and tons of supplies to aid their struggle. U.S. did not cover itself in glory when it withdrew this support it gave to Tibetans. The U.S. personnel were withdrawn and the aid dried up. That was an intensely painful moment for people like me who were then living with Tibetan people.
 

All of us had an understanding of the event that led the U.S. to backstab the Tibetan people. The U.S. sacrificed the freedom of the Tibetan people in its quest for establishing bilateral ties with communist China. 

Thirty years after this betrayal, the United States should reevaluate the basic principles for which it stands today. The U.S. flag has been always a symbol of freedom. The issue is not that of containment of China.The issue is not that of engagement of China.The real issue is that of the freedom of the Tibetan people. We need to stand up for our own fundamental values and do the right thing.
  
Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham,
Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India,
M.B.B.S., Class of April, 1970.

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

SPECIAL FRONTIER FORCE – WHOLE HOSPITALITY

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A Locator map of North East Frontier Agency in...
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The war memorial at Walong, Arunachal Pradesh
 

   

  

I had the wonderful opportunity to serve in North East Frontier Agency after Indian Army's victory in Bangladesh. I had camped at Walong visiting troops.

 

A view from a hill top near Walong, Arunachal Pradesh.

 

During 1962 Chinese aggression Indian Army had valiantly resisted the enemy's attack in a historical battle at Namti Plains, near Walong, Arunachal Pradesh.

 

Suspension bridge across Lohit River near Chigwinti, Arunachal Pradesh.

 

This is a picture taken at Headquarters 'D' Sector, prior to my visit to Chigwinti, and Walong. I am seen here along with Major Deedar Singh, the Unit Adjutant, and Captain Roop Singh an Assistant Company Commander standing in the middle.

 

This entry is dedicated to the memory of those brave men who gave their precious lives fighting the massive Chinese aggression in 1962.I experienced the traditional Indian hospitality at a forward Company location in Arunachal Pradesh(North East Frontier Agency) and my memories are fresh after a lapse of nearly 35 years and the reason is that I still feel the same passion to serve our men who fight for our country.    

In 1962 while the Chinese attacked India, I was a first year student studying for a Bachelor of Science degree(3 year degree course) at Government Giriraj Arts College, Nizamabad, Andhra Pradesh. India was taken aback by this unprovoked and unexpected invasion across the Himalayan Frontier.There was a spontaneous reaction from people across our nation. Nizamabad was no exception and the Giriraj students took out a procession to condemn the enemy. I was not a student leader but I was the son of the Principal of the College. That placed me in the very first row of students who led the procession. At that time, I did not visualize myself that I would be wearing the Olive Green Indian Army Uniform. By year 1972, I had completed two years of service in Indian Army and the great moment in my life arrived when I stood before the War Memorial in WALONG. The following verses were inscribed on it:    

The sentinel hills that round us stand    

bear witness that we loved our land.    

Amidst shattered rocks and flaming pine    

We fought and died on Namti Plain.    

 O Lohit, gently by us glide    

pale stars above us softly shine    

as we sleep here in sun and rain.    

Let us keep our collective memory afresh and pay tribute to these loyal sons of our land.    

THE TRADITION OF HOSPITALITY IN INDIA :    

Hospitality is a fairly popular tradition for a variety of cultures across our globe. In India the tradition was well established a long time ago and we elevated it to a degree which may not be seen anywhere else in this world. The Vedic statement ” Athiti Devo Bhava ” is a thought that was expressed only in our land. The word ‘Athiti’ defines the guest as a person who could show up at your home without a prior notice or formal invitation and on a day and time of his own choice. Our literature is full of stories about this great tradition of hospitality and the episode described in the story of MAHA BHARATA shows the importance of preserving this tradition. Princess Draupadi was overwhelmed by the arrival of a large number of guests , while she and the Pandava brothers lost their kingdom and were living in the forest. She did not want to fail in her duty of being a good hostess. She was desperate and she met this challenge by earnestly praying to Lord Krishna. Upholding the principle of hospitality is very important to Lord Krishna and He gracefully provided the help Draupadi needed to serve her guests in accordance with our DHARMA(Right Conduct). Her adherence to the tradition of hospitality truly defines the Indian Identity.    

Most of you would have experienced some act of hospitality or the other and I want to narrate a simple act of hospitality that I had experienced at CHINGAWANTY ( or CHIGWINTI ) in Arunachal Pradesh and would take this opportunity to speak of my memorable experience at this forward Company location and describe this as our Indian Identity.    

THE TRADITION OF HOSPITALITY AT CHINGAWANTY ( CHIGWINTI ) :    

The Company Commander Major.G B Valenkar was the recipient of VIR CHAKRA award for his role in the Liberation War of Bangladesh in 1971 and at that time we had worked together in the same Unit. He had briefed me about the traditional hospitality of the men of his Company. Before the dinner was served, he told me that the men would continue to serve food till such time I would announce that I am fully satiated and that I need no further servings. Then,they would bring one more final serving to ensure that I am truly satiated and well fed. I wanted to test them and find out for myself their devotion to their hospitality tradition. After dinner was announced, I mentioned my preference for bread. Instead of ‘chapatis’, I told them that I would like to be served with ‘purees’to go with my meal. The dishes were served piping hot and the purees were made one after the other and a fresh serving would arrive just before I would finish the previous serving. The food was delicious and the mountain weather was cool and refreshing and I was young and had a healthy appetite.  I continued eating while having a pleasant conversation with Major.Valenkar and after several servings, the man stood before me respectfully and had asked me to grant him some additional time before he could bring forth the next serving. He mentioned that the cook had run out of the dough he had prepared for the evening meal. I responded saying that I really need no further servings and asked him not to bother about preparing more dough. The man submitted that it would not be fair on my part to stop him at that juncture and stated that I could only stop him from serving only at a time when he is  able to provide more servings. In Indian tradition, the guest is also expected to give his host a reasonable opportunity to fulfill his obligation and the host has also a right to derive a sense of satisfaction by observing the rules of hospitality. I had to concede and in a little while, he resumed his service. After eating to my heart’s content, I had told him that I am really satiated. He agreed to bring in the final serving and he passed in the test and he did not give up until he made sure that I am fed till such time that I am fully fed.    

I am speaking of this hearty meal to just give you a chance to taste the passion that keeps us united and we relished the opportunity to serve our land and defend its traditions.    

Annam Brahma raso Vishnu robhaktaa Devo Maheswarah    

Yevam samchintya bhumjaano,drushti doshie ranlipyatey.    

The above verse is asking us to consider both, the meal, and the guest who is partaking the meal as God.   

Dr. R. Rudra Narasimham,    

Kurnool Medical College, Kurnool, Andhra Pradesh, India,    

M.B.B.S.,  Class  of  April,  1970.