Saturday, September 06, 2008

Former Signal Offr-in-Chief responds to Express Edit

Responses to this Indian Express editorial just won't end! Most of the stuff I'm getting is rants, but I'm posting all the coherent responses here. Here's another response from Lt Gen Harbhajan Singh (Retd), former Signal Officer-in-Chief, based in Chandigarh:

The Gentlemen of Indian Express,

Yours is a very esteemed newspaper. You have often taken independent and even anti establishment line and one looks forward to reading point of view on national matters written in your daily and in particular the Editorials.

However, your Editorial dated 3 Sep 2008 titled "It's the Uniform" is ill advised and written by some one ignorant about Defence Matters and working. Some glaring aspects are -

1. It is apparent that the person writing the Editorial did not carry out required research, before passing judgment and using impertinent and derogatory language towards highly respected icons like Chiefs of Defence Services. He should have discussed with senior spokes persons of the Defence Services their apprehensions and then written such an immature editorial. Especially so, since he himself has conceded in the Editorial that it is not often that the three Services address joint letters to the Raksha Mantri and that also against a Government decision!He obviously failed to do this, thus causing great pain and anguish to the Defence fraternity due to wrong and biased conclusions drawn and derogatory language used.

2. And you Mr. Editor Sir, should have used your maturity, experience and sense of judgment to examine the draft critically, before letting it be published. Just look at the language used while ending the Editorial given below-When the senior most of those wearing that uniform write letters of the sort that the defence minister just received, that hope receives a small jolt.Do you really believe that the Service Chiefs do not know when and what to write to the Raksha Mantri!! You think they are frivolous functionaries!! It does not behoove Indian Express Editorial to use such words for the Service Chiefs!!!

3. This just proves the point that the Services are not getting the required respect. If this is the respect shown for Service Chiefs by an esteemed Newspaper like yours, what is the Izzat and status the Jawans will get !! This is a very dangerous trend and sad for the Country indeed.

4. It would therefore be in the fitness of things for the Editor to meet senior officers dealing with this letter and fully understand the Services point of view.

5. However, a number of letters have been written to you regarding this Editorial by senior retired officers. These can be seen at
http://www.reportmysignal.blogspot.com/.

6. These explain why the persistent effort of the bureaucracy to downgrade in-terse status of Defence Services Officers vis a vis IAS and Para Military Forces is not acceptable and needs to be reversed. The game being played by them is anti national since it is anti Defence Services.

7. Please read this ancient Indian wisdom and ponder over it-

Kautilya's sagely advice to Chandragupta on the Mauryan Soldier. "Pataliputra rests each night in peaceful comfort, O King, secure in the belief that the distant borders of Magadha are inviolate and the interiors are safe and secure, thanks only to the Mauryan Army standing vigil with naked swords and eyes peeled for action, day and night, in weather fair and foul, all eight praharas (round the clock), quite unmindful of personal discomfort and hardship, all through the year, year after year. To this man, O Rajadhiraja, you owe a debt: please, therefore, see to it, suo motu, that the soldier continuously gets his dues in every form and respect, be they his needs or his wants, for he is not likely to ask for them himself. The day the soldier has to demand his dues will be a sad day for Magadha; for then, on that day, you will have lost all moral sanction to be King!"

8. Defence Services are not "cannon fodder" sirs. They have hearts and souls too and are the only organization functioning effectively in the Country. It is suffering casualties day in and day out since the dawn of Independence on 15 Aug 1947 but not flinched. There is no other military in the World, which could bear such hardships and casualties for 60 years, non stop!! And there is no other organization in the Country which could be so patriotic and disciplined.

8A. Who saved Kashmir in 1948. Indian troops air lifeted a few hours before the Raiders could enter Srinagar !!

8B. Who saved Amritsar and area West of Beas River in 1965 and carried the War to enemy's heartland !!

8C. Who liberated East Pakistan, helped form Bangladesh in 1971 and bombarded Karachi !!

8D. Who suffered over 500 casualties in Kargil in 1999 but evicted the intruders from our sacred land !!

8E. Who were the first to arrive and help survivors after Bhuj Earth Quack in 2001!!

8F. Who were the ones to help effectively in Tusami in 2004 !!

8G. Who are the ones now evacuating people in Bihar floods and providing them food and water as also medical aid !!

8H. Who are the ones fighting terrorism in J&K and insurgency in the East for years and years !! Every day our brave officers and men are losing their lives in faithfully carrying out their duties. Situations created due to greed, lethargy, dis interest of the Politicians and the Bureaucracy, who are just not interested in resolving such issues.

9. How short can be the memory of even enlightened people like you and how ungrateful you can be!! Sirs, Defence Services are the sentinals of this Country and in case they are demoralized, the safety and security of the Nation cannot be assured.

10. Let us keep the status and Izzat of the Defence Forces high. The Press/media have a very crucial role to play to keep reminding the Nation in this regard

11. Sir, you need to tender an apology to the Nation and the Defence Serices for denegrating the three Service Chiefs in your Editorial dated 3 Sep 2008. It will be in the fitness of things for you to write another editorial explaining the Defence Services point of view.

Sincerely,

Lt Gen Harbhajan Singh
Former Signal Officer-in-Chief
Chandigarh

27 comments :

Anonymous said...

1. It is apparent that the person writing the Editorial did not carry out required research, before passing judgment and using impertinent and derogatory language towards highly respected icons like Chiefs of Defence Services.

This is the same accusations by everyone when IE posted that stupid series against DRDO.

Anonymous said...

A well deserved Jhapaad on the face of the "editorial" team of IE. I wish the rebuttal was more caustic

Anonymous said...

I also wonder why Shiv you would call it "rants". The respect that the freedom of the press gets should be mirrorred by the respect that a response to the press gets. In this particular case a stupid article- which have neither been researched properly and neither any dim-witted attempt has been made to understand why senior defence officers are speaking in public about this, something that they normally wouldn't. Obviously, people in the Republic of India do not realise the cost at which freedom comes and they probably will need to realise this sooner rather than later.

fighterclass said...

Anonymous said...

1. It is apparent that the person writing the Editorial did not carry out required research, before passing judgment and using impertinent and derogatory language towards highly respected icons like Chiefs of Defence Services.

This is the same accusations by everyone when IE posted that stupid series against DRDO.
___________________________________

similar trash, similar retorts !

Anonymous said...

I am glad fighterclass your back...where did you disappear. I really love it when you take on Shiv one-on-one, as he thinks no one can puncture his huge inflated ego, and you did it so successfully. Please keep responding and showing Shiv his true colours.

Anonymous said...

I am glad fighterclass your back...where did you disappear. I really love it when you take on Shiv one-on-one, as he thinks no one can puncture his huge inflated ego, and you did it so successfully. Please keep responding and showing Shiv his true colours.

Anonymous said...

Fighterclass what does actually DDM mean? I couldnt understand it before when you tried explaining. I mean explain it literally.

I thought it was Deen Dayal Marg, some road in Delhi??

And Aroor, since you are agent of the services, please ask them when and with how much will they be satisfied with. All these retired types can do is quote from Chanakya, talk about izzat, and ask for more money. Always begging. Money money and more. Just ask them Aroor once and for all.

And Fighterclass, its your job to see if Arooor is doing it carefully or not.

Rahul M said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
fighterclass said...

X-posting from the other comments section.
_____________________________________
want to know what is DDM.
please read this:

http://forums.bharat-rakshak.com/viewtopic.php?f=3&t=3694&start=0

especially read the news article from the 4th and 5th posts, from aroor's favourite Indian Express which carries "excellent" editorials on defence matters !
cheers !
___________________________________

for those who didn't understand, that report talks about problems with the Arjun's "torsion bar suspension" when it doesn't feature one !!
it has the next generation "hydro-pneumatic suspension" !!

What is DDM ??
expanded, it means desi dork media.

explanation: Indian media is infested with reporters who go on the defence beat w/o even a basic knowledge of the matter.
Please Check the above link to find some glaring examples.

e.g
a)
http://img258.imageshack.us/my.php?image=d276921144pd1.jpg
a report on the INSAS. the pic accompanying it is Royal Army (british) gurkhas carrying the SA-80 assault rifle !!

b)
the ultimate one !! read the caption and take note of the spelling !
http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshowpics/msid-2787954.cms

and there have been umpteen reports on the "200cm diameter" akash missile (just imagine how much is that) to indigenous LCA "test-fired" !!
even a few days back there was a report that LCH is based on the cheetah helicopter. and so on and on !
also read the take on DDMs by better sensed people from the media.
http://www.domain-b.com/aero/20080218_duds05.html

P.S. I don't have any personal enmity with aroor. He used to be .... but did improve a little over the last year or so. He took unnecessary offense when I pointed out that prasun sengupta is a thorough plagarist and a liar -- he makes up specs in his dreams and passes them off as facts.

Anonymous said...

TO ALL INDIAN USERS (esp. Wikipedians), IMPORTANT!

There is an ongoing war in Wikipedia regarding an article called "Pakistan occupied Kashmir" with Paki Wikipedians requesting it's deletion. This is because the article is claimed by them as "not neutral point of view". The article is now up for deletion after. Please show your support to keeo this article by voting for it. Type *'''Keep'''- followed by your message. You must however have had a reputable Wikipedia account for voting or it won't be counted. Thanks.

The voting page is loacted at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Pakistan_occupied_Kashmir

The article in question is available http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pakistan_occupied_Kashmir

Mod, please delete after 2 days.

Anonymous said...

fighterclass is Rahul M from BR!

Anonymous said...

they want it deleted so everyone must only direct to AZAD KASHMIR page. So we have to vota "Keep"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Pakistan_occupied_Kashmir

Anonymous said...

arre rahul!

Anonymous said...

hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. all the BR folks are spending their time here.

fighterclass said...

fighterclass is Rahul M from BR!
___________________________________

says who ?

I won't deny nor accept the fact for the simple reason that I don't wish to reveal my BRF ID.

and whatever be my BRF ID, that has absolutely no bearing on the discussion here.

fighterclass said...

fighterclass is Rahul M from BR!
_____________________________________

says who ?

I won't deny nor accept it for the simple reason that I have no wish to reveal my BRF ID.

please don't go off on a tangent away from the discussion here.

Let people like aroor and his supporters respond !

my BRF membership has no relevance to these discussions.

cheers !

Anonymous said...

you can do better than trying to control discussions aroor !!

Anonymous said...

fighteclass a.k.a rahul m of brf forum, you happened to post under your name "Rahul M" the identical post, which you then deleted and then posted as fighterclass. hahahahahahahahahahaha. so much for "fighterclass".

Anonymous said...

in a democracy, everyone has a right to one's opinion but the over the top reactions of the Faujis to the piece in The Indian Express seem somewhat in poor taste as well. Let me tell my friends that the more we try and say that we are better than others, more we are forcing them to react to shows us in poorer light.

So my advice to erstwhile and comrades and friends is to ignore such pieces or to respond to them in a logical and cool manner without listing either our past services(remember the mutual fund disclaimer-past record is no guarantee of future performance)or running others down.

Anonymous said...

@fighterclass, when you are attempting to be anon, at least dont make our brotherhood of anons look stupid by accidentally posting under your real name, Rahul M. you have just shown yourself up to be a natkhat nitwit. :) :) :) btw, i enjoy your comments on BRF!!

Anonymous said...

shiv aroor continues to keep his head firmly up his backside and refuses to continue posing as anons !
how many fake ids will you create shiv ?

Anonymous said...

Rahul M, Rahul M, Rahul M, Rahul M hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. Ok now i am bored of this. thanks for the laugh, rahul m.

Anonymous said...

abbe Rahul M, chehre to dikha salee! fighterclass it seems!

fighterclass said...

too bad aroor, you have nothing much to do other than fidget over if I am mr rahulm or not !!

too bad you have no answers.

Anonymous said...

TO ALL INDIAN USERS (esp. Wikipedians), IMPORTANT!

There is an ongoing war in Wikipedia regarding an article called "Pakistan occupied Kashmir" with Paki Wikipedians requesting it's deletion. This is because the article is claimed by them as "not neutral point of view". The article is now up for deletion after. Please show your support to keeo this article by voting for it. Type *'''Keep'''- followed by your message. You must however have had a reputable Wikipedia account for voting or it won't be counted. Thanks.

The voting page is loacted at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Pakistan_occupied_Kashmir

The article in question is available http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pakistan_occupied_Kashmir

Mod, please delete after 2 days.

Anonymous said...

The Ex SO-In-C has written a response to the editorial that is praise worthy and is very factual. I wish more retired Generals will pitch in to support the Service Chiefs!

Anonymous said...

The Gen has not touched one very very important aspect. The constitution has restricted the fundamental rights of the soldiers but not condemned them to lifetime of slavery with hands tied and mouth taped. That is why the parliament has authorized the service chiefs to represent the forces to the council of ministers i.e, the civilian Govt and not the self styled Govt of bureaucracy. In fact these babus should be prosecuted for treason because by their actions they are closing all avenues for quality man power to join the defense forces voluntarily.I did not understand the threatening language of the editorial.It would be much better for Mr. Gupta to advice the babus to find ways and means to attract quality manpower to the forces and retain the ones who want to run away.They have not left so far because the Act makes it a criminal offense to run away unlike the babudom where one can absent himself for years and still claim a lien and even manage a pension. It is not the responsibility of the chiefs to attract manpower but of the political leadership and the Nation. The media can do a lot to attract the attention of the leaders to this and the need to reign in the mischief making babus who are their assistants.