Cyber soldiers want war as retribution for Pulwama. That's because they know they won't suffer for it

Only those who know they will not face enemy guns are shouting for battle with Pakistan. In reality, how many of these people has ever helped a martyr's family get even a due pension without a fight?

 |  6-minute read |   24-02-2019
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It has been over a week days since 40 CRPF soldiers were killed in an unprovoked and cowardly attack in Pulwama. We are all angry. We are all asking questions. We all want answers. 

Why must our bravehearts meet this end? Why is the life of a soldier so cheap? Where was the intelligence? Why weren't they airlifted? How can we help their families? 

And then, there is the cyber army.

While the soldiers have been laid to rest in their respective hometowns, the unrest for their families has only just begun. But even in that unrest and grief, they have not asked for bloodshed or destruction. 

But the cyber army is outraged.

It wants revenge.

It wants blood.

And the scariest of them all — it wants war. 

main_pulwama-candle_022019083038.jpgThe cyber army wants an eye for an eye. Martyrs' families know better. (Photo: Reuters)

This cyber army does not comprise of a soldier, his family or his well-wisher. If it did, it would know what's at stake — it would know who bleeds when a soldier dies.

A family wakes up every day to the fact that the uniform their beloved so carefully ironed, the medals and the shoes that he so meticulously polished are all they have left of him now. Being an army kid, I have seen many such families, their world crumble and their efforts to rebuild it, first-hand.

One would not utter the 'W' of war if they met even one such family. 

Here is something to give you an idea. 

As a sixth standard student in Lucknow, I'd see a young mother out on a walk with a baby in a pram. She was chirpy, greeted everyone, and asked us so often about school. I was to learn in the coming months that two soldiers had shown up at her door one morning. Her first words were, "Oh my God, what happened to my husband?"

She was right. 

A friend whose father served as a doctor in the Army during the 1999 Kargil War told me he was never the same when he returned home. He locked himself in his room and cried for days.

Years later, having somewhat coped, he would tell them stories of soldiers who wanted to be killed knowing that they were losing a limb and wouldn't be able to fight anymore, those who tried to mouth messages for their families as they breathed their last, those who didn't want to be treated because they wanted to be back in the battlefield even as they battled near-fatal wounds. 

Another friend, a daughter of an Air Force officer, shared that she would never forget how her classroom windows rattled when the fighters took off for Kargil from the Gorakhpur Air Base — where her father was posted at the time of the conflict. The class would go silent for minutes that would seem like forever, and almost every evening, the mothers would be out longer to console someone or the other.

A lady who lost her husband in an IED blast when her daughter was a few months old told me how the daughter had once come back home after playing and asked her, "What does papa mean?"

Professor SK Nayyar — the father of Kargil martyr Captain Anuj Nayyar, whose bravery is documented in various articles and essays — had to wage a long battle to get what his son was due. His struggle has been described in the Sanjay Suri-Gul Panag starrer film Dhoop. Professor Nayyar was apparently asked by a cop to prove that he was indeed Captain Nayyar's father. He went back to the police station with a few photographs and told the cop if this wasn't proof enough, he could bring his wife the next day as a mother would tell who the father of her child is. This is only one such story. That war had seen more than 500 casualties.

Many war widows face this cycle of humiliation and mental torture. They lose their husbands, bring up their kids single-handedly while painfully running around, seeking what is rightfully theirs. War comes at a very huge price — the people who ask for it are the ones who are sure that the guns will never be pointed at them and they won't ever be billed for it. They don't care about the soldiers or their families and what happens to them when the war is over.

Who asks after them or helps them in their everyday fight with the bureaucracy? They only care about their warped idea of 'revenge' and the thirst for bloodshed.

In the US, it is common for people to walk up to soldiers and say, "Thank you for your service." Here, soldiers are reminded of their perks and privileges — the most talked about being the canteen facility. Major Nisheet Dogra, who was found buried five feet under snow in Sikkim last week, was in an area that had no electricity for over a week and the generators were not working — as tweeted by his father Mr Umesh Chander.

Do you think anyone adopts this way of life for products that cost a few rupees less? Seriously?

There are victory marches against the armed forces when cantonment roads are thrown open. People look away when veterans protesting, demanding implementation of the OROP (One Rank, One Pension) are manhandled by cops. 'Proud Indians' beat up young Kashmiri students, shut their shops and stop trains — none of which reflects what our armed forces stand for. 

Yet, the soldiers die — in the snow, in burning aircraft, in blasts and in gunfire, and save lives when natural calamities strike.

And they will continue to. 

The primary job of the military is to defend the nation. And the powers that be will make informed decisions. 

But, if you really want a war, make sure it is against those who humiliate the families of slain soldiers, make them run pillar to post to claim what is promised to them and insult the martyrdom itself. Promise yourself that no family of a martyr will be harassed under your watch.

Let us make ourselves deserving of their sacrifice. 

Also read: Pulwama Terror Attack: Fight Pakistan, but fight these internal battles too


Neha Sharma Neha Sharma @mmiinniii

The writer is a journalist and a former senior entertainment editor

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