by Lt Col Zaheerul Hassan (R)
Indian Army (approx. 1,380,000) is the second-largest standing military in the world whereas the United States of American Army (477800) is not even half of it. However according to international media Indian Army is on the top in global crimes list due to its insolvent in bribery, sexual harassment, war crimes, killing, injuring and raping of innocent Kashmiries, Sikhs, Maoists, Christians and Gujrati Muslims. The conduct of said crimes have become part of routine activities of Armed Forces and multiplying the already prevailing hate in the society. According to one of my friend from Ludhiana Mr. Balbir Singh Sooch, Advocate, Chief and Spokesperson of Sikh Vichar Manch very rightly diagnosed the reason of hate in Kashmir. I always respected Balbir Singh due to his fair opinion and candid voice against Indian brutality in IHK and other parts of the India. His recent email stamped my already published observations about Indian rogue army. He narrated one of the incidents of the past in which deployed soldiers forced innocent females to appear naked before the commanding officer of a unit since one of the villager woman refused to provide hen to his bearer.
In this connection, I am reproducing Balbir Singh’s report for the attention of my readers since it is not different from the prevailing situation in Kashmir. According to him after 1971 War with Pakistan, he was posted to Srinagar from April 1972 to April 1974 as he was then serving in Indian Air Force. The soldiers of Indian Force were not always equipped with weapons and were no way a ruthless or inhuman force in uniform and their job was different than the Indian Armed forces including Border Security Force (BSF).
Sometimes, Airmen feel ashamed to call themselves “Fauji” in the context, though, that ‘word Fauji’ should be an honourable for all of us in India, but it is not so for the protectors of the country and negatively used. There were Kashmiri bearers engaged privately available for the different groups of Airmen, who were provided a pass by the Air Force authorities to serve and earn by doing petty work like serving morning and evening tea from the Mess on our bed and bringing washed and pressed uniform and other clothes for us on requisite payment to them.
One day, I was being having adventurous thinking, I asked my bearer to take some of us to the nearby Villages for a visit as to know how, the villagers live there and to know about their living standard? Normally, fencing of sensitive Air Force Wing boundary remained open and broken for facilitating the civilian to enter through short cuts, and there was not different situation, though that was a field area. His prompt reply was, “The Villagers will hate and beat me as to why he brought ‘Army men’ near to their ladies and close to them, even can attack, abuse and insult you in anger”.
Then, I questioned him, why it will be so?
He started narrating the past number of stories from 1965 War with Pakistan, as to how armed forces dealt cruelly with illiterate and simpleton Villagers in Kashmir? For example, he said, I like to sight one narration of very painful story-tale, “That once during the War of 1965, one Col. ordered to his soldiers at midnight to bring a hen or Murga from some Village and prepare the chicken for him.
The soldiers obeyed the Commanding Officer and went to hunt for him, but then the Villagers did refuse deliberately to offer chicken to their demand in the manner considering the men of alienated forces, India. The soldiers reported back to their Commanding Officer the negative response of the Villagers at midnight in the matter. On hearing this, the Commanding Officer got frustrated and angrily asked his soldiers to march along with him in uniform towards those Villages, from where you got response negatively in the matter. According to the bearer, the Commanding Officer ordered to his soldiers, ask the ladies of each Village behaved in the manner in the matter, to bring hen or Murga in their laps with their breasts naked in standing position and their men to lay down on the ground during the midnight illegal operation.
They took all hens or Murgas from ladies after humiliating them by all the ways cruelly and their men were beaten very badly, while lying down on the ground without any justice to them. According to the bearer, it was usual for the Indian Army or BSF to do so. I think, now a days, the condition may be worst as being encouraged to Indian Forces through the Indian Media. It was really then a heart touching and painful story of Kashmiris in the hands of the Indian Forces and I don’t think now situation is different there, where touts and the most corrupts are ruling under a contract with the government of India.
Anyway, the bearer convinced about us to the Mukhiayas of Villages that Indian Air Force men are not cruel as they had wrong impression and we could visit a few Villages and knew their simple, natural and innocent behaviour especially of the extra ordinary beautiful girls. Who did not know difference between 25 paisa and 40 paisa? The most beautiful girls turned our enemy with their face red, when we offered 40 paisa of an egg (Thool in their language) instead of 25 paisa, when the same size Egg (Thool) was available in Srinagar City of 65 paisa then. On this confrontation, the shopkeeper was asked to come and convince them that we ready and willing to pay more prices for their eggs, brought by them. When they knew the truth, the smile on their face was extremely attractive and thereafter, I never experienced such a sudden and natural smile in my life.
I never enjoyed such a natural beautify, simplicity and innocence of girls after visiting the Villages of Srinagar.
I did ask the Villagers present there that you people are getting very cheap ‘Rice and Dal’ on subsidy. In reply to this, the Villagers said, “our Village ‘Mukhiayas’ sell such ‘Rice and Dal’ in black and don’t bring it in their Villages in connivance with the officials concerned. In the end the Chief Spokesmen of The Sikh Vichar Manch very rightly stated that the conditions for the Kashmiris may be worst presently than those peace days in the valley. Like every other fair individual Mr. Balbir Singh asked form the international community that whether any solution to this international problem is there or not?
It is mentionable here Kashmir issue is one of the basic bone of contention between Indo-Pak. The resolving of the Issue will definitely improve the regional security .
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