Recently, Col. Kaushik Sircar’s (Retd.) debutbook, “PARAM VIR CHAKRA”was launched by His Excellency Governor Shri. KeshariNathTripathi at RAJ BHAVAN, Governor’s House. The book has been divided under three heads; Those who embraced Death, those who Kissed Death and What inspired these men for this conspicuous act of bravery and courage. The author has rightly given a brief on all the operations and the various operational chiefs who handled and planned the wars at that point of time. Indomitable courage, outstanding leadership and devotion to duty, that’s how we identify the men in olive green.Far from their homes and loved ones, in the cold winds of frosty Siachen or the heat waves of hot Rajasthan or the hilly terrain of Arunachal, are soldiers on guard to protect our Republic while we are in our cozy home. Abhijit Ganguly spoke to Col. Kaushik Sircar.
Q) What is your view about this book?
A) “I believe ‘the soldier is the army and no army is better than its soldier’ it’s a proud privilege for me that this book has already received such great endorsements. I salute the bravest soldiers who sacrificed their lives while fighting the war. ‘People sleep peaceably in their beds at night only because these rough men stand ready to face violence on their behalf’ .It’s my strong belief that this book will not limit itself in the shelves of the army men or libraries, I have high hopes on – this taking up an actual rage, since this depicts the sacrificing phase of the real heroes of our nation, I ensure this is more content driven and crisp, thus qualifying to swoon the heart of the young readers of the nation.
Q) How important is it to document the lives of our valiant soldiers who were awarded the Param Vir Chakra?
A) Our youth should know more about the sacrifices of our very own men in uniform who has been recognized by our country, just a handful of 21 brave soldiers who were awarded the country’s highest gallantry award since 1947
Q) You have met their families and interviewed three of the only living soldiers .How was your experience?
A) It is almost a life time experience to meet the families and some living legends who stood like a rock during the various operations and faced them with their head held high.
Q) “The army is a passion, not a profession for they never lower their guard, in peace or war.” Your thoughts.
A) The country should be rest assured that whether snow, hail or storm the Indian army is standing behind the integrity and sanctity of the country 24x7x365
Q) Could you share with us one memorable moment from your tenure ?
A) I have taken part in IPKF srilanka, Op Vijay Kargil, Op Parrakram and a stint in National Security Guards. Every operation had a different story to say, be it Hijack operations, Calling from the bunker at Kargil, or from the Tigers Den at Srilanka
Q) It is said that the shortage of officers has been plaguing the force for several years. Is it true that youngsters are not attracted to join the army?
A)The youth is not attracted because they have far too many easy options in the civil street. Army life is very hard and present generations are not keen in taking it on even with the best of pay packages. We cannot have chocolate cream soldiers and is better to have deficiencies than to recruit/commission people who are looking for easy options.
Q) Do you believe the decision to induct women in both the navy and the army will provide an opportunity for women to break the glass ceiling?
A)Its a laudable decision. The women should today stand and fight with their men shoulder to shoulder. Our society is yet to change their stand on women specially the rural areas from where our soldiers come from, but with time they too shall adapt to these changes for good.
Q) Do you have any advice for the youth who may want to join the armed forces?
A) Only one advice…the country requires you in the forefront and carry the flag flying…be a part of it and not a part of candle marches…Jai Hind