A recent string of avalanches in Jammu and Kashmir took 10 lives — 4 Army soldiers, a BSF jawan and 5 civilians. The soldiers lost their lives in an avalanche that hit their post in the Machil sector in Kupwara while the BSF jawan was killed after an avalanche hit the LoC. The civilians lost their lives in Sonmarg in the Ganderbal district.
The media has largely remained ignorant of this news. While repeated news bits of who Hardik Pandya is engaged to or how the hollow protests at Shaheen Bagh are panning out hit the senses of people, the most relevant of news about the martyrdom of our soldiers has flown below the radar of majority of media outlets. Does any citizen know the names of those who lost their lives? Or more importantly, do even anchors and media people know their names?
Sadly, we’ve made the death of our soldiers a commonplace happening that is bound to happen. It is the consequence of the job, isn’t it? You’ve taken a gun in your hand, you’re facing the enemy in the harshest of conditions, so, if death comes, what’s the goddamn big deal? You signed up for it!
Yes, there was much outrage and outpour of emotions post the Uri and Pulwama attacks, and it was immensely heartening to see how people rose as one in support of the soldiers and their families. But we cannot just focus on these sacrifices in short phases when something dramatic happens. This is like waiting for a dozen soldiers to die in a day and only then will we spend our thoughts on the happenings. And by ‘we’ I don’t just mean the public but also the media and every other organisation and entity that has the ability to spread better the deeds of our soldiers. We as a society needs to get our act together and keep cognisant of the 24/7 efforts of our soldiers, our intelligence officers, and our policemen. That is the only way we’ll be a perpetually sensitive society that will be worthy of dying for.
Here’s something to shake the very depths of your soul.
This is the 3-month old daughter of Gunner Ranjit Singh who died in the avalanche. She is giving fire to the pyre of her father. Makes you speechless, right?
This should remind all of us Indians of the incredible sacrifices that the families of our soldiers make, especially the little children who have to grow up without their fathers. At times they go without proper food and clothing and education, the parents go without apt medicine, and the wives without a partner, dreams shattered to bits.
As the people whom these soldiers die defending it is our duty to respect them, to remember them, to share their tales of valour, and to financially support their families. I request you to go to the link below and contribute to the Bharat Ke Veer corpus fund that will enable the families of martyrs to at least live a life of financial security.
Source of picture: Vikas Manhas, @manhasvikas41