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The Doyan Of Indian English Writing – Lt Col Manohar Malgonkar

The latest release of film super star Rajnikant’s movie Robot has taken the box office by storm. This Mahrashtrian superstar who stars in Tamil films has an appeal that transcends gender, race and state. Rajnikant even at the ripe age of 64 storms the silver screen like a tornado. In fact his role and demeanour would do credit to younger actors. But there is no denying the fact that Rajnikant is a superstar who cannot be matched by any other Indian star on the screen. He also the highest paid as well.

The lend-lease stipulated that it was the responsibility of the user nation to either return the machines or make them unfit to fly. However IAF engineers in collaboration with Hindustan aeronautics was after cannibalization able to get about 42 machines on line. Two squadrons were equipped with this bomber.

The first battalion of the sikh troops was formed in the erstwhile British Army Admit Card in 1846 just before the annexation of the Punjab. from that time onwards the Sikhs became an integral part of the British indian army exams. At one time the Sikhs formed as much as 33% of the strength of the Army during the days of the Raj.

Here is something else I found even more surprising – each comment is date recorded, and I discovered these “Christians” continued arguing for days. The longer they went on the more the “Christian” became like the ones he/she were fighting. They were just as nasty and bitter, with a lot of name-calling. The “Christian” within their heart soon wished the “Atheist” were dead. Where is Christ in that, and where do, you find Christ or Paul commanding us to destroy or even fight against people who don’t agree with us.

The Ethiopian Empire included Abyssinia. This was a vague area with a rough rocky terrain. The land was full of mountains and hills with no transportation facilities. The major task in the invasion of the Empire was to cross all these hurdles which was a dreadful task. This is the reason why there had been no invasions on the Ethiopian Empire till then. The British government was firm to cross all these barriers and free the captives.

Everything the army did was of top notch quality, better than anyone else. If they built a neighborhood, it was well planned and well maintained. If they built a road, it had proper drainage and would last longer than any road built by the government. During the 90s, scenes of soldiers rescuing people from ravaging floods and patrolling the troubled streets of Karachi were portrayed daily in the Khabarnama (daily new bulletin on state TV) and are engraved in the nation’s memory. The army was a symbol of righteousness in a society riddled with corruption and nepotism.

We are reminded of the Second World War where the absence of a strategic bomber proved a severe handicap for the Luftwaffe. It was like fighting a war with one arm rendered unusable. In turn the Chinese Air Force can hit any target in India with impunity from their bases in Tibet. In addition the Chinese air force has almost 4 times the first line strength of the IAF.

If the answer to the above is “no,” then all arguments concerning the role of women in the armed forces are specious and have no real meaning. But if the answer is yes then women can certainly be part of the armed forces. But what is the answer? The fact remains that the effect of women in the combat zone can be beneficial for the men. May be not for actual combat but for other roles they could be an asset and their presence will fulfill an emotional need of the soldier as well. In that manner their presence will be positive. You could also use women soldiers as guards of POW patients, running military canteens and similar non combatant jobs. But to think that they can shoulder arms or manage themselves as soldiers in battle conditions would be a little farfetched.