Heroes of India: Sagas of Bravery

Heroes of India: Sagas of Bravery

RIFLEMAN RAIECE AHMED GANIE, SHAURYA CHAKRA  Jammu and Kashmir has been in a deadlock of relations with the once united neighbors, India and Pakistan called India prior to 1947. There has been a load of bloodshed and loss of lakhs of innocent lives due to militancy in the Valley. Nevertheless, Jammu and Kashmir has given birth to many brave hearts who have kept the fervor of patriotism running high among the people of the Valley. These sons of the nation hailing from the Valley have exhibited acts of gallantry, surpassing all human limits of bravery and courage. Many acts go unnoticed and the heroes remain unsung. One of such brave sons of the Valley who has dedicated his life for the nation and continues to serve unconditionally is Rifleman Raiece Ahmed Ganie from Anantnag district. This living legend is a disciplined soldier who remains an exemplary illustration for the youth in the present times to motivate them for patriotism. Rifleman Raiece Ahmed Ganie was born on 02 October 1983 at village Furrah, Mir Bazar, Anantnag, Jammu and Kashmir. He had an inclination for Army since his childhood. He was inspired from the stories of soldiers of Indian Army who saved Kashmir from getting into aggressor’s hands in his village by the village elders. His dream came true on 05 February 2001 when he joined the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry and started his military training at the Regimental Centre and then posted to one of the units. He is married to Mrs Parveena Akhtar and is blessed with a son Mr Ruman Ibne Rayees. Rifleman Raiece Ahmed Ganie was posted to a Rashtriya Rifles Battalion in December 2006. Upon posting to the RR Battalion, the dedicated and gallant soldier was posted the Ghatak Platoon at Pulwama. He displayed remarkable tactical acumen and resolute dedication in his approach to counter militancy in operations. He used to lead the team in the RR Battalion and was instrumental in collecting hard intelligence leading to a number of successful operations with minimum unavoidable or no collateral damage leading to neutralization of many foreign militants thus, contributing for peace in the valley. Being native to the Valley and having an added...

The Untouchable Class

The Untouchable Class

Remember Mirza Waheed, he wrote The Collaborator and gained instant fame. This entire write up (and its a long one – don’t plan to read bits and pieces because you won’t get the theme right) is all about what he calls Narrative Control. I know you would be fed up of Kashmir and my comments by now. However, unless you read the view from the other side of the fence you will never get to change the narrative. Waheed may be partially right but his views are obviously one sided. He hates India and the entire idea of India. He doesn’t realize that the imperfect India is surreal India; it is changing and will go through the dynamics of change as all developing nations do. His views are obviously western; thus his inability to absorb imperfect India. For all his supposedly independent and informed views he is misled by separatist propaganda. Not a whimper on what actually transpired in 1989, what happened to the pandits, no regret for them; no mention of who started the violence and why. The unfortunate part – he will be read and believed by many because there is no effort from our side to project the alternative view. To really take the wind out of his sails we need a change in narrative to counter his opinion of narrative control. How do we do that is the million dollar question. Unfortunately there are none who will think this through and come up with answers. We remain condemned to continue to be at the receiving end of a narrative which Waheed and his ilk control.  Syed Ata Hasnain The Torturable Class By Mirza Waheed When it comes to Kashmir, India acts as a police state, holding even speech hostage. Why this obsession with narrative control? Photo by Alexandre Marchand In the summer of 2012, I received a phone call from the Indian High Commission in London. It was odd. I hadn’t applied for a visa or any such thing. My wife and three-year-old son had, however, and had been waiting nearly three months. We were scheduled to visit my home in Indian-occupied Kashmir for my sister’s wedding, which was drawing close. We had been...

Jammu and Kashmir, Where Are We And Where Are We Going ?

Jammu and Kashmir, Where Are We And Where Are We Going ?

Lt Gen (Retd) Syed Ata Hasnain, PVSM, UYSM, AVSM, SM**, VSM**  Commentaries on Kashmir have been the flavor of the season ever since Shekhar Gupta’s article in Dec 2013 suggested that the time was ripe for the Army to vacate the hinterland and restrict itself to the LC in J&K, declaring a ‘victory’ of sorts for the Indian State. A series of articles in response by informed military leaders argued that there was no question of a victory against our own people and that the Army was as yet relevant. This is because the conflict stabilization stage in J&K was still existent. Any decisions about diluting the Army’s role in the stabilization process would need to be taken in the light of the potential situation in the region as the draw down and vacation of Afghanistan is commenced by the ISAF in Afghanistan. These decisions need not be taken under pressure of adversarial propaganda about the presence of disproportionate strength of the Army in J&K. We also need not be pressurized about the Rashtriya Rifles (RR) presence or begin to think that its job is over because the residual strength of terrorists is extremely low. It needs to be remembered that the RR was raised for a purpose. Some claim it was to defeat insurgency while the truth actually points to the fact that it was raised for the purpose of re-integrating J&K with India; the task of re-integration has not yet been completed and therefore the necessity of the RR’s presence in Kashmir remains. Currently the main theme of all discussions on Kashmir is the likely effect of the withdrawal of the ISAF by end of 2014. Will it see a repeat of the events of 1989 which witnessed the inception of militancy and entry of foreign militants in Kashmir? The less informed are assuming that Kashmir will see much more turbulence in 2014-15. However, it perhaps may be  incorrect to template 1989 to 2014. The situation is vastly different. There are very few mercenaries in Afghanistan whose main commitment will be to assist the Taliban against the Afghan National Army without much attention towards Kashmir. The Pakistan Army will similarly be more...

‘Nice guys finish second’

‘Nice guys finish second’

So what should the governor of Kashmir be like? HAPPYMON JACOB I am using the title of BK Nehru’s famous book ‘Nice guys finish second’ as the title of my column today because what follows would have certain indirect links with Mr. Nehru’s tenure as the governor of J&K from 1982 till he was shifted out by Indira Gandhi for refusing to remove Farooq Abdullah from power in J&K.  The Times of India carried a news item the other day that there is a strong speculation that the incumbent National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon will replace Mr. N. N Vohra as the Governor of J&K, that too in the near future. I am not sure how much to trust this story but if indeed there is such a move underway, I don’t consider that to be a good choice for a variety of reasons. If Menon’s stint as the Foreign Secretary and National Security Advisor is any indication of what kind of a Governor he will make, then one would have to say that he is unlikely to be any more than a guardian of the status-quo, something the people of Kashmir patently detest. Mr. Menon is a sophisticated diplomat who can articulate and justify New Delhi’s positions on various issues with élan and aplomb. But that’s it – he is no visionary who can put together a roadmap for conflict resolution in J&K considering the fact that governors in this conflict-ridden state have been given more powers than governors elsewhere. So what should the governor of Kashmir be like? Clearly, Kashmir and Kashmiris deserve someone better than Mr. Jagmohan whose tenure can easily be termed as one of the most disastrous in the modern history of Kashmir. First of all, the governor of J&K, where a number of internal and external security considerations converge, should be someone who can get out of the comfort of the Raj Bhavan and connect with the people of the state. He/she should be a statesman, sensitive individual, and who does not see governorship as merely a post-retirement perk. Again, when it comes to J&K, there is no point in suggesting individuals who may be very good...

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