|Posted by: Bhootnath Aug 17 2004, 11:28 AM|
|" JAI INDIAN SECOOLAR ARMY" ? from dailypioneer.com Indian Army's new Enfield rifle Abhijit Bhattacharyya Traditionally, the Indian defence for an Indian civilian is a "forbidden territory". Very few, like "The" K Subramanian, have so far dared cross the "boundary" to the "forbidden" land. Today, however, this Indian citizen ventures into the "prohibited" zone to focus on a reported instruction given to all Army Commanders "to ensure that the Indian Army's secular credentials are not questioned". One may ponder on the word "questioned"! Who will question the Indian Army's "secular credential"? Why and what for? Is there any "cause of action"? For now, let us see the variety of "instructions" issued: "All religious symbols must be avoided by all officers and men when on active duty" and "no religious symbols, no devotional music, no sacred threads and no statues of deities". Direction for women officers are also in place. "Women will not wear ear studs or sport jewellery and only sindoor will be allowed if it is covered by a beret or peak cap". The instruction also strictly forbids religious symbols like "bibhuti, tilaks, birthstone rings or bracelets". One is curious. What is the provocation for imposing so many do's and dont's on an institution with a glorious tradition of valour and apolitical professionalism (Tehelka and other aberrations notwithstanding)? Did the Army show any sign of fundamentalism, lack of objectivity and fairness? From all accounts that does not seem so. Far from it. The Indian Army's credentials are time-tested. Even the strongest critic, if any, would not (like to) resort to such falsehood. One would now like to draw the attention (of all) to the core competence of the Army; its training and preparation for war by the Infantry, the spinal chord of the fighting machine. Who constitutes the Army's fighting units? Where do they come from? How do they go to war? What is their battle cry? The battle cries of the various combat units show that contrary to what has been instructed, the Indian Army consists of deeply religious soldiers from the countryside, the majority of who are Hindus and Sikhs. Understandably, their battle cries are a revelation. The battle cries of the Bihar Regiment, consisting of 17 battalions, are "Jai Bajrang Bali" ("Victory to Lord Hanuman") and "Birsa Munda Ki Jai" ("Victory to Birsa Munda"). The latter war cry, obviously, is resorted to by the sizeable number of soldiers recruited from the tribal belts of Jharkhand and Chhota Nagpur regions. For the 19-strong battalions of the Rajputana Rifles, its war cries are: "Raja Ram Chandra Ki Jai" ("Victory to Raja Ram Chandra") chanted by the Rajput, Kshatriya and Thakur soldiers and "Bole Nara Haidiri Ya Ali" meant for the Muslim companies of the Rajputana Rifles (which consists mainly of Rajput Muslims, implying the Rajputs who had embraced Islam during Muslim rule). For the 19 battalions of the Punjab Regiment, the twin war cries are "Bole So Nihal, Sat Sri Akal" ("He who cries God is Truth, is ever happy") for the Sikh soldiers and "Bol Jwala Ma Ki Jai" ("Say Victory to Goddess Jwala") for non-Sikh combatants. For the 19 battalions of the Rajput Regiment which consist of Rajput, Muslim, Bengali, Oriya, Gujar and Ahir (Yadav) soldiers, the battle cry is "Bol Bajrang Bali Ki Jai" ("Say Victory to Lord Hanuman")". The 18 Battalions of the Mahar Regiment go to the battle chanting "Bolo Hindustan Ki Jai". (Late General K Sundarji was a product of Mahar Regiment). The 19 battalions of Kumaon Regiment, which produced three Army Chiefs (Srinagesh, Thimayya and Raina) has four battle cries: "Kalika Mata Ki Jai", "Bajrang Bali Ki Jai", "Dada Kishan Ki Jai" and "Jai Durge Naga" meant for the 1st and 2nd Naga Regiment attached to the Kumaonis in their regimental training centre. For the 18-battalion Garhwalis, the war cry had to be "Badri Vishal Lal Ki Jai" ("Victory to the Great Lord Badri Nath"). The Dogras, with 18 battalions, chant "Jawala Mata Ki Jai". Incidentally, the present Army Chief is the first Dogra officer of this regiment with glorious history. To the Sikh Regiment and the Sikh Light Infantry, the war cry is identical - "Bole So Nihal Sat Sri Akal". General VP Malik (Army Chief from 1997-2000) was from the Sikh Light Infantry. The 19 Battalions of Jammu & Kashmir Rifles start war with the chorus "Durga Mata Ki Jai". For the 14 Battalions of Jammu & Kashmir Light Infantry and the two Battalions of Ladakh Scouts, the mantra is "Bharat Mata Ki Jai". Although the famous Gorkha war cry is universally known as "Ayo Gorkhali" ("The Gorkhas are here"), at least one regiment, that is, the 11 Gorkha Rifles, starts its battle with "Jai Mahakali". Field Marshal SHF J Manekshaw was from 8 Gorkha Rifles. After this explicit and deeply entrenched reality on the ground, one is surprised at the attempt to "secularise" the Indian Army. The soldiers, by their very nature, are religiously motivated, deeply committed and God fearing individuals. And their sensitivity and self-respect emanate from their background as well as the stark reality of possible (at times) and certain (most of the times) death in combat zone. When man faces danger and death, he inevitably remembers God. That is a universal formula. There are no ifs and buts. However, religious sensitivity is the Indian soldier's precious possession. And any attempt, even if done unknowingly, unwillingly or unwittingly to hurt it, can backfire. The Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 saw en masse revolt of the Hindu and Muslim soldiers. In 1984, India faced the unprecedented revolt of the Sikhs. Both the revolts were born out of a deep sense of hurt to religious feelings as Hindus, Muslims and Sikhs are all deeply religious and God fearing humans. Yet, none can accuse them of being religious fanatics and lunatics once they join the Indian Army. Such was the ethos of an Army built and nurtured by a foreign country (Britain) that had nothing in common with India or its people. Today, therefore, the press report on Army instructions banning "birthstone, bracelets, religious symbols and ear studs" and camouflaging of sindoor, perhaps, runs counter to the time-tested ethos, traditions and conventions of Indian soldiers' way of life in the regiments. Here one may like to distinguish between the normal religious commitment of a human being and the distorted religious interpretation of a fundamentalist, fanatic and abnormal individual. The soldiers of the Indian Army are normally not known to be religious lunatics and fanatics. Nor does one visualise them to be so in future, "instruction" on "secularism" notwithstanding. (The author is an alumnus of the National Defence College of India and is Member, International Institute for Strategic Studies, London. The views are his own)|
|Posted by: Bhootnath Sep 4 2004, 11:49 AM|
|http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow/835681.cms Forget Rakhi, you are in army now RAHUL SINGH TIMES NEWS NETWORK[ THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 02, 2004 12:57:43 AM ] CHANDIGARH: Respected as rakshaks of the entire country, many of them did not sport a rakhi on Raksha Bandhan, fearing it would damage the secular fabric of the Indian Army. In the wake of instructions issued by the Army early this year regarding the need to maintain a strict dress code and a secular image, it was assumed that the colourful threads of rakhi did not go well with the olive green of the military uniform. An Army major did not wear his rakhi till the time he changed into his civvies. "I didnt want to take a chance. The directive issued by the army headquarters instructs us not to sport sacred threads," he said. Reaffirming its secular credentials, the army had earlier ordered its personnel not to |sport religious symbols such as bracelets, birthstone rings, vermilion streaks or sacred threads. Caution was the watchword among soldiers, though one can hardly insert a particular religious ideology into the system by tying a rakhi around the wrist. But the code of discipline is the cornerstone of army tradition that has to be defended anyhow, some might argue. A colonel said while there were no specific instructions to avoid the festival, he felt it was expected of army personnel to be of strong secular convictions. "In any case, saluting your superiors with a rakhi tied on your wrist is a bit awkward," he said. At some units, the choice of wearing a rakhi was left to the troops. However, it was verified during the morning muster on Tuesday that the rakhis were gone. Western Command hospital commandant Maj Gen S K Kaul told The Times of India that the staff had been instructed not to wear rakhis after the festival was over. A few Army officers wore rakhis "because theirs werent gaudy, but plain looking threads that kept up the spirit of the festival without defying the code." A captain said he put on his rakhi in the morning to mark the festival but removed it before leaving for office.|
|Posted by: rajesh_g Sep 7 2004, 01:12 PM|
Yes, yes. 1. Ask the Sikhs to remove beards and paghadi. 2. Disband Sikh regiment. 3. Send out circulars banning "Jo bole so nihaal.." , "Har har mahadev..", etc.. 4. Also ban people from saying Bharat MATAA ki jaay We need a puke icon badly..
|Posted by: Sudhir Sep 7 2004, 03:33 PM|
|Why don't they just put out signs at all military recruitment centers: 'Only atheist need apply'. Then we can truly endorse 'Jai Secular Army, Navy, Air Force, BSF, NCC, Boy Scouts etc'|
|Posted by: Sudhir Sep 7 2004, 03:37 PM|
|On second thoughts, is 'Jai' okay for our secularvadis ? I mean shouldn't it be changed to something like 'Lord save India' or 'Hail India' or 'In God we trust' or even 'India Paindabad' ?|
|Posted by: Mudy Sep 7 2004, 07:26 PM|
|Are they planning to break cabbage in place of coconut during inauguration? Army is creating 1857 situation.|
|Posted by: Bhootnath Sep 7 2004, 11:55 PM|
|I am surprised that forum members are reacting to news now! If my posts are being ignored . just tell me I will stop posting , might as well save few rupees via reduced connect time, I am lower - middle class chap. Abt Rakhi/Rakhdi - very typical "INDIAN BROWN UPPER CRUST SAHIB" move by whoso ever did it, if N C Vij so be it .. I just respect for anybody who proposed it. By that Accoiunt , lets remove names like "Sikh Regiment", Rajputana Regiment, ask everybody to be clean shaven and no Frriday Namaz for Muslim cadets/officers. I am willing to post a memorandum to President/VP/PM / DEFENCES SERVICES HEADS/ MEDIA EDITOR and all 525 MP , including as many MLAS as possible, if somebody can actually put together a DECENT Write-UP. Because if i did .. then even I am apprehensive that even I will read it second time. I think its a VERY STUPID MOVE BY INDIAN ARMED FORCES!! If that is Secession so be it! What the hell Indians , fought for since 100 of years.... just listen to English Numbers and Eat Rice with Fork ...while praising everything Western while "low-class" Batmans and Soldiers from Average backgrounds fought in the frontiers!! and Produces Schiddts like Ramdas/Bhagwats etc ... So pls put together a "erudite" piece of draft together I will mail it to every one I mentioned. Unless we are shrugging our shoulders like a typical *educated* hindus|
|Posted by: Bhootnath Sep 7 2004, 11:57 PM|
|> I just respect for anybody who proposed it. I just lost .respect .. that is ...|
|Posted by: Viren Sep 8 2004, 08:40 AM|
|Boothnath, Remember that issue with Simranjit Singh Mann who was arrested or detained for trying to sneak in his kirpan into Parliament? Whatever happened to that case? Does our current PM walk into Parliament with or without kirpan? Added later: Check this http://www.defenceindia.com/def_common/ethnic_group_recruitment.html Not sure if this has been discussed around.|
|Posted by: Sunder Sep 8 2004, 08:48 AM|
As long as he is subservient to the Italian lady, it would not matter if he has a Kirpan or not. Does he carry a spine into the parliament or not ? that is the question.
|Posted by: rajesh_g Sep 8 2004, 09:54 AM|
Bhootnathji, Chill boss !! Re writing the piece, I dont even know what "erudite" is .. but I think its a good idea. May I suggest that you post something (erudite or not) and then other members will help us out with that ? We can even create online petition for this ? Regards..
|Posted by: Nikhil Sep 9 2004, 11:18 AM|
Oh..baaaah.. he doesnt even have hairs on his head to carry along with him.. you expect him to carry "kirpan" in Parliament Regarding the Ban on RAKHI in Army.. well that makes INDIAN ARMY = STOCK OF ZHANDOO PEOPLES!!
|Posted by: Bhootnath Sep 9 2004, 11:53 PM|
|> Chill boss !! Array Boss, Chill hee Chill hai > Re writing the piece, I dont even know what "erudite" is .. :unsure Array , are you trying pull my leg here ? :> but I think its a good idea. May I suggest that you post something (erudite or not) and then other members will help us out with that ? > We can even create online petition for this ? Leave it , looks like only two of us are concerned abt it. Regards|
|Posted by: Nikhil Sep 13 2004, 01:55 PM|
|Army bans religious symbols in vehicles Man Aman Singh Chhina Chandigarh, September 14 In a bid to maintain its secular credentials, the Army has forbidden the display of religious symbols on its vehicles. In a letter circulated to all units and formations, Vice Chief of Army Staff Lt-Gen Shantanu Choudhary has expressed his displeasure at religious symbols and pictures being displayed on staff cars and light vehicles by Army personnel. Many drivers of Army vehicles usually place figurines and pictures of Gods and Goddesses on the dashboards of the vehicles. Stickers and rosaries are also common seen. Lt-Gen Choudhary has stated that "such display of religious and devotional symbols is a departure from the spirit of our traditions and will be stopped forthwith". The use of agarbattis (incense sticks) in vehicles has also been banned. According to sources in Western Command HQs, Lt-Gen Choudhary's letter has also pointed out that despite instructions prohibiting display of religious symbols while in uniform, a large number of even very senior officers defy the orders by wearing overt religious symbols like wrist threads and tikkas. It has gone on to state that such an instance had come to light at the recently held defence investiture ceremony at the Rashtrapati Bhawan. Stating that such actions are contrary to the value of secularism — an intrinsic component of the service — the vice chief has demanded explanations from erring personnel "notwithstanding rank or status". "However after close consideration I am not resorting to this to avoid embarrassment," he states. Lt-Gen Choudhary has instead deemed it more appropriate to re-apprise senior officers on the need to sensitise the environment and to ensure strict compliance of rules and regulations among everyone. However, the letter states that some leeway can be given in certain conditions. Religious symbols might be allowed when troops are in operation. -------------------------------------------------- EVEN THE MOST DEMOCRATIC/SECULAR COUNTRY USA'S ARMED FORCES DOESNT BEHAVE LIKE THIS!! Actually for matter of fact, when you enlist in US-ARMY or other brances of armed forces, they give you a copy of BIBLE. It is probably, Vice Chief of Army Staff Lt-Gen Shantanu Choudhary is doing all this to please THE ITALIAN SUPERPRIMEMINISTER OF INDIA to become next Chief of Army!! What a shame What will be next?? SOLIDER Ram Bhadur Singh, your name sounds very typical hindu name, hence from now on you will be known & called by your new army designated name "AK37298J" only|
|Posted by: Krishna Sep 13 2004, 03:46 PM|
|Nikhil, Indian Army is not BAD. There are people outside who's enforcing their p-sec views on the armed forces. However, no bashing of the Indian Armed forces. Thread is closed for now.|
|Posted by: Krishna Sep 13 2004, 08:10 PM|
|Topic Title edited. Thread re-opened!!|
|Posted by: amarnath Sep 13 2004, 08:38 PM|
|Last time heads tried to inforce such things , they failed. The average Indian soldier is very religious and will not see his god taken away from him. Rest Assured , these are cosmetic changes.|
|Posted by: Viren Sep 13 2004, 08:39 PM|
Why? So during 'operations' we ain't going to be 'secular'? Seems like they'll have to be part time secular - more like p-psec.
|Posted by: Viren Sep 13 2004, 08:41 PM|
It's interesting to note that these chaps have time for cosmetic changes when there's some real work to be done - as in Manipur
|Posted by: amarnath Sep 13 2004, 10:47 PM|
|Viren In Manipur and other areas where the state experiences insurgencies , the Army can only fight them, not eliminate.It is the duty of state government to bring about the right conditions for their elimination. Imagine, Pranab wanted this order issued....the VCOAS will have to do it , he just faxes it to all and leaves it there.why blame the army ?|
|Posted by: Viren Sep 14 2004, 07:09 AM|
Did Pranab order this or some top brass trying to establish his “secular” credentials with the new regime? It's not blaming the institution per se, but there’s nothing wrong questioning decisions of a select few, especially when they are (financially? or) politically motivated.
|Posted by: Kaushal Sep 14 2004, 07:51 AM|
|The religious affiliation of many of the regiments were encouraged by theBritish in theBirtish Indian Army. Many Sikh regiments have the Granth Sahib in a prominent location in the regiment headquarters. For the sake of secularism are they going to abandon this ? This is a violation of freedom of expression and freeedomto practice ones religion in an unhindered manner. While these 'cosmetic' changes are taking place in order to please the vote bank of the concerned minister, the demographics of the country is inexorably changing and many districts in the northeast are now 51% Muslim. Understand this is a one way street and the next step to ethnic cleansing and elimination of the hindu in these districts is but a hop skip and jump away. For an existence theorem we have the example of the kashmir valley which except for official personnel is completely cleansed of all Hindus. IOW, the particular region ceases to be secular the day it attains 51% Muslim status. So we have the situation of a secularist government and media facilitating the establishment of a Islamic ummah. Note again that secularism in India is a one way street and is an irreversible process. My question is whom are we trying to impress by being secular (other than the vote bank and the communists who keep the secularist pot boiling)|
|Posted by: Nikhil Sep 14 2004, 09:53 AM|
oops you didn't knew this easy answer Well than Muslims in Indian army would not have to fire bullet against pakistani army, or terrorists since due to lack of "SeCOOLER-ism" during "operations", pakistani army and terrorists will become fellow muslims brothers, while fellow hindu/sikh soldiers are new targets!! Regarding whoever is saying that it is POLITICIAN, well smell the coffee, it is Army, and all the blame for these new stupid rules go only to the army onlee jee cos if they dont have spine to stand up to the traditions of this land than they should not be in Army at first place. All in all, it is clear that many officials find it easier to get promotion by sucking upto politicians, n proving that sucking up by doing idiotic things like banning RAKHI, Banning Religious symbols etc for one HINDU community only!! I have lost my respect for army, since noone is evening questioning or making voice about in armed forces! If Indian army has got the "kida" of being Secular, than first of all, all the sikhs in army should shave off their heads, no kanga, kacha, kada etc, second, no more sikh regiment, rajput regiment, no more beards, qurans for muslims, no more national holidays on Id and other festivals. No more "BHARAT MATA KI JAI"
|Posted by: rajesh_g Sep 14 2004, 10:09 AM|
|This move is wrong on several levels.. 1. Move is unfair. anti-majority. 2. Politicises the forces and moves the debate into the armed forces establishment. 3. I have not seen the reports of the forces showing any communal behaviour - has anyone seen anything like that ? 4. We must answer the question - what are the defense forces defending ? borders ? people ? culture ? way of life ? Why did we fight the war of independence ? Even the British used to have armed forces, law enforcement agencies to protect people and borders so why did we fight for independence ? independence from whom ? independence for what ? We are talking about people whose profession is to lay down their lives to protect what they think they are protecting. The idea of what they are protecting is an important factor that inspires people to lay down their lives. History might teach us a lesson in this regard. We must ask this question - what motivates a soldier to lay down his life in battle ? 5. As Nikhil rightly asks - where do we stop ? Even our names belie our religions - what are we going to do assign numbers ? 6. I will surely miss the battle cries "Jo Bole So Nihaal", "Jai Mahakali, ayaa gorkhali". I know our enemies are not.. Updated : Bhootnath has already posted the dailypioneer article.|
|Posted by: Sunder Sep 14 2004, 02:48 PM|
|I am wondering why the government has stopped with just the armed forces. Shouldn't this excellent idea be extended to para-military and police force too? And also to ALL government institutions, like public sector units, universities, government colleges and schools. Teachers and students too should be encouraged to give up symbols of religion when on duty or in government buildings. I wonder whether men circumcised in the name of religion (thus carrying a religious symbol on their person) are barred from the armed forces and other government duties as long as they remain circumcised.|
|Posted by: Mudy Sep 14 2004, 03:57 PM|
|Posted by: acharya Sep 21 2004, 02:15 PM|
|Is it possible to create a petition which would oppose such a move within the army. We need mass awareness of this law which basically may curtail the fighting spirit of the army.|
|Posted by: Mudy Sep 21 2004, 04:16 PM|
Sure. I can create petiton but need some good writeup .
|Posted by: Viren Oct 7 2004, 10:42 AM|
|Posted by: Mudy Oct 7 2004, 11:07 AM|
|Indian Army Jawans are very religious and believe in rituals. Every units have their own temples, All festivals are celebrated in big way. It is impossible to break. New government policy will create anger and it will back fire. Religion is soul of every jawan, it is my personal experience.|