A song from the movie Border goes as below. Indian Soldiers sing this song as a cult favorite and I had the fortune to listen it first hand from them in an army barrack in Punjab, few years before.
Sandese aate hain, hame tadpate hain,
Toh chitthee aati hai, Toh puchhe jati hai,
Ke ghar kab aaoge, Ke ghar kab aaoge,
Likho kab aaoge, Kee tum bin yeh ghar suna suna hai
Loosely translated, it talks of “letters coming in from home and asking when you will come back. Without you home feels empty, without heart“. It talks on mother’s love, childhood days, love of the lover, village, its greenness - who all are asking when the jawans (soldiers) will come home? The song is deeply touching, and if you yourself sing, it will move you to tears or at least leave you with a choked throat. Having stayed outside of my native place for close to two decades, I feel the song very much till today and in my college days we were used to sing this song to cheer us up among friends. Lyrics here and video here.
A solider is a man. A solider is someone’s son. A solider is someone’s brother. A solider is someone’s father. A solider can also be a husband or a brother in law or someone’s relative. In India, as many of us know, soldiers are mostly come from poor families and they neither have the voice or connection or money/muscle power to go through the wall – the system. When a solider joins an army, as I have interacted with them, the primary thing you will see is their pride. The pride of working for their country, India. They believe the Nation will stand up for them when needed. But alas! How naive they are?
Last December, when the gruesome Delhi incident happened, Jaya Bachchan, a woman MP, cried in Parliament. She went on to add that she is worried about the girl, what will happen to her and questioned on the bills that are brought into Parliament. With tears and an emotionally choked voice, she question the political leaders, what about the mothers who bring life to earth? Good. Now, cross your heart. Imagine a woman crying – true or false and ask yourself, what happens then? Do you feel emotionally charged? Do you feel a deep sense of outrage with all logic gone? Yes! It does happen. After that many MP came out to protest in front of Parliament. Most of Delhi, the city which was never safe anyway anytime before, came out with candlelight marches, tears dropping down the cheeks of men and women. And it spread to the entire nation. It is another matter that, when the incident happened and the gangrape victim and her brutally tortured male friend were lying without any clothes in a pool of blood in the chilly winter of Delhi, almost all the passersby choose to look the other way. And as I had predicted, the male victim is shunted out immediately as too dangerous for media and the rotten feminist’s agenda.
In last December as well, we saw the cry of the father of Captain Saurav Kalia, the man who was brutally murdered by the Pakistanis. His father has been running for 13 years, from pillar to post. This happened to Captain Kalia and 5 lion heart soldiers.
Pakistan army tortured by burning bodies with cigarettes, pierced ear-drums with hot rods, punctured eyes before removing them, broke most of the teeth and bones, fractures of the skull, cut the lips, chipped the noses, chopped off limbs and private organs besides and finally shooting them dead. (from wiki)
Hold on a for a moment. Do you feel a sense of deep outrage now? No?Not yet. Okay.
Our then external affairs minister, SM Krishna, clearly denied that they have ever approached Pakistan on it or have asked on it! I downloaded the letters of Rajeev Chandrashekar, another MP, who as a matter of fact have repeatedly asked the minister to act on it! Barkha Dutt of NDTV then brought in the minister of Pakistan Rehman Maik, who on prime time show on an Indian TV channel, blatantly lied again! Do you feel a sense of shame anywhere? No? Alright.
What our media did, even after the Captain Saurav Kalia incident had hit the nation – they brought in Pervez Musharraf, the chief architect of Kargil War and many terror attacks on India, to studios of NDTV, CNN-IBN and TV Today. The leadership of this country felicitated Musharraf at HT Summit, where many public companies are sponsors. One SP MP, Kamal Farooqi, seriously objected in TimesNOW when Musharraf was called Mian, and immediately changed color! Like Roman emperors of early times, coliseum of Cricket was in full swing, just a few days before, to divert the attention of the crowd from the real issues. Then it brought in Imran Khan, a man known for his hatred for India, to teach us Cricket lessons!
In last few days, we are seeing tortures unheard of in today’s time, again and again. Perhaps, only during Hitler’s Nazi rule such brutalities were done against soldiers. Lance-Naik Hemraj and Lance Naik Sudhakar Singh are killed, and one of bodies severely mutilated. Internally, explosive devices are found to be inserted in a body of a CRPF man. Now, feel a bit outraged, a sense of shame, a feeling of betrayal, a head hanging out of guilt?
No. Not an iota of outrage, a sense of shame, other than writing RIP this , RIP that on Twitter! Just because they are men, is that you do not feel it at all? Just because they are men, you do not feel they do not deserve a candle light march or at least a diya in your house? Just because they are men, not a single woman MP will drop a tear?
In the song “Sandeshe Aate Hain”, the final lines are these:
Main wapas aaunga, Main wapas aaunga
Phir apne gaon me, Usiki chhao me
Kee Maa ke aanchal se, Ganv ke pipal se
Kisike kajal se, Kiya jo wada tha woh nibhaunga
Main ek din aaoonga
It means the solider are singing that – “they will come back one day. They will come back one day to their mother’s laps. They will come back to their villages one day. They will come back to fulfill the promises they have made.“
Lance-Naik Hemraj and Sudhakar Singh will never come back. Captain Saurav Kalia and the other 5 soldiers will never come back. They will never come back to the cool shadows of trees, to their families or to their mother’s anchal. But, as a nation, it is we who must feel and light a Diya to keep their souls alive. Will you discard, just because they are men? Or will you honor their hope and pride with which they served and saved the Nation – by lighting a Diya, if not a candlelight march? I do not know. But, I did light up a small Diya, in my own small way. Will you?