ancient indian history

Revisiting School Memories

Revisiting School Memories.

I wanted to share a brief historical perspective on the Chinese Invasion of India and the subsequent war in 1962, before I share my school memories . This invasion, is often referred to as the Sino-Indian War, which marked a significant chapter in our nation’s history.
The invasion began in October 1962, when Chinese forces launched an attack on India’s northeastern border. This event escalated tensions between the two countries, leading to a full-scale war that lasted for about a month. The war had resulted in territorial losses for India. The war had also highlighted the importance of diplomatic and strategic approaches in maintaining international peace.
The conflict had left a lasting impact on the geopolitics of the region and shaped the way both India and China had interacted thereafter with each other.
It serves as a reminder of the complexities and challenges that can arise in international relations.
While the wounds of the past remain, the lessons to be learnt by people & politicians of India, I wish to share some emotions with my alma about the 1962 war and about loss of many indian soldiers & officers.

I remember my two close relatives, both in infantry wing of Indian Army, had participated in the war.
Their respective regiments were deployed on different borders of India.
I have some fond & deep memories of those days.
I remember, Swaran Bala madam (our principal) had handed over shoe polish & brush to us, so that we children, go to different people, polish their shoes & collect money, to be donated for the welfare activities of Army soldiers.
Though our contribution was very mesgre, but it had left a lasting impact on our minds as regards importance of patriotism.
I remember another incident. When we heard the news that General Kulwant Singh Dutt, was martyred in the 1962 war. His sacrifice had touched me, so deeply, even to the extent of feeling like my own close relative i.e my uncle (real bother of my mother), whose name was also Kulwant Singh, had passed away.
I was studying in class IV of New High School, Ludhiana.
I started crying and was non stoppable.
I remember “Subedar Sahib” my class teacher (His real name I don’t remember) came to me & tried to comfort me. But he was also in tears.
The memory of the moments in our school classroom, where we the students of class IV, shed tears and mourned the passing of a great general, is a testament to the empathy and compassion, almost all students & teachers had, towards our army men. The war had profound impact in our lives, even till many years later.
The kindness and understanding our class teacher displayed by comforting me and giving me a soft drink, was a great gesture, for I which I have no words. This gesture had made me emotionally numb & comforted me.
I can only say that educators like him are there not only to impart knowledge but also to provide emotional support when needed by students.
While General Kulwant Singh Dutt was no longer with us, his legacy lives on our minds through these memories and emotions, he had stirred in our school children.
Let us continue to honor his memory and the sacrifice of many others, who have fought for our nation’s well-being & got martyred.
Let us also thank our school management for providing us the best faculty, which was emotionally sensitive while dealing with children.
Cdr Alok Mohan.

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