Meeting a ‘Fauji’ from Indian Army

I met a Jawan from Indian Army today. It was an accidental interaction which happened on my visit to cantonment area. We had a long chat. Some harsh facts about a fauji’s ‘lopsided’ life hit me hard. Here is a brief account. Please note, this is not a sob story. This is a bitter truth.

My young (mid 30s) friend, now I can take liberty to call him as friend, shared his feeling of loneliness that he has been living with for past 13 years. He meets his wife and kid only once in a year. He has had 11 different postings in past and has not attended more than 4 Diwalis at home since leaving his parents to join Army. He expressed agony of physical pain that he has to go through and mental pressure under which he is expected to deliver his best. ‘Boss’ is a very mild word for him. He laughed at my expression when asked about relationship with his ‘boss’. He said that all he knows about ‘boss’ is ‘ruthless’ senior rank ruler who squeezes him to the best of his potential. There is a tendency to keep people under you ‘disciplined’ because if they are let to themselves they may deviate from the core i.e. Service to Nation. Stress levels at work are high. There remains constant fear of being sent on war front. A sudden ‘news’ of fellow fauji’s brutal death spreads like a wild fire and that day’s dinner finds no takers. 

He shared that no doubt there are plenty of good facilities around. The best part of his job, he thinks, is making life long friends and living together in harmony with all of them like one single family. He took pride in sharing his unforgettable memories at various places he served. He was very proud about what he was doing. He was sentimental about his respect for nation. Bharat is synonymous to him with the word ‘Maa’…he loves the feeling of being a part of community that takes care of his mother… 

It was a touching moment when he said, “I know one day I too am going to die somewhere there. But I live each day with a purpose. While others talk about doing something for this country, I do it every single day.”

Salute at least one soldier next time you visit a defense land. 
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Author: anilkshatriyablog

I work as Assistant Professor in the area of Accounting at IMT Nagpur. I love teaching, writing and cycling. I follow a simple principle, 'Help ever, hurt never'.

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