Pheonix Unleashed

Perception Personified – Renin Raj

Tribute To The Great Indian Soldiers

At 15000-ft you cannot breathe normally. There is less oxygen up there. The air is ratified. The lungs scream for oxygen. The blood vessels cry for oxygen. The wind can sear your windpipe, chill your brains, make your eyes weep with pain and cry out in sheer exhaustion.
Kargil Soldiers - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 2 - Renin Raj

You are not normal there. You cannot be normal because the human body is attuned to a certain altitude. Yes and that’s where our Soldiers are Fighting the enemy. Facing the bullets. Dying alone in the snow. Falling to death from the high ridges and being awake all day protecting us so that we can sleep peacefully back in our cozy sheltered home.

Kargil Soldiers 3 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 4 - Renin Raj
We cannot sustain a mere 19 degree cold in our Office when the AC is on. So Just take a minute of yours and imagine  how it feels to be up there in that cold mountains where some times temperature is even in minus degrees, carrying a heavy backpack with a gnawing fear that you will never see your family again; you will never be able to see your loved ones again. Its terrible right. Yet the step they have kept forward is never taken back till the last cell in their body is alive.

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No one hears their scream. It’s such a lonely death. A tiny piece of metal is all what it takes to die for them. They are our infantrymen. The finest in the world. No other soldier has ever fought at these heights so special are our soldiers.

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He does not sleep. He does not have time to eat. He doesn’t have time for himself. All that he has in his mind is to protect Mother India. Life is not as easy as we have thought it is. Life is a shell. It is the terror of death that can strike any second. It is the courage of facing it what an Indian Soldier has in abundance.

Kargil Soldiers 18 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 19 - Renin Raj

The enemy is up there, somewhere hidden. It can see us, can track us down like a rat, and can pick us out so effortlessly… yet our soldiers move front slowly but with determination to fight for the nation. To die for the nation.

Death is not what that matters. What matter is that you will not matter anymore. And yet they go up the hills, like the charge of the light brigade, never asking questions, never expecting an answer. They know they have a duty, they have a pledge, and they have a promise to keep. Their tryst with destiny. They shout “JO BOLE SO NIHAL, SAT SRI AKAL” (is a statement meaning “whoever utters (the phrase following) shall be happy, shall be fulfilled,” and the second part satsri akal (Eternal is the Holy/Great Timeless Lord). and keep marching forward just to protect us. Just for us to have a sound sleep.

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Taking you all a few years back when the whole nation stood behind the great Indian Armed Forces when we won the kargil war and celebrated the ‘VIJAY DIWAS’ on July 26th, But now it seems like we have forgotten the young men who gave their life for us in the conditions considered to be unsuitable for human survival.

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Kargil Soldiers 24 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 26 - Renin Raj

Their families that got enormous support when the heat was on are now fighting each battle of their life alone. Are we doing right by forgetting the past, forgetting what they have sacrificed for us so that we see a happy today? It has been Nine years today since our pride was restored. Are we really giving back to our soldiers who protected us? A million Dollar question I leave it for you all to answer. This question has always brought tears in my eyes and caused agony deep in my heart. Over a 400 of them died In Kargil war which is said to be official count. Median ages of Soldiers died were in between 19 to 35. When their coffins were brought to the capital, these were the scenes around it.

The grim-faced army officers receiving the coffins, draped in the tricolor, the carriage to the army parade ground, the set-jawed shok shastra farewell salute by steely soldiers. The silent sorrow of upraised guns, slowly bringing the barrel downward to the ground, left arm tautly extended to the right before re-tracking, the holding of palm to chest, the sudden dropping of head, the 30-second hushed silence, then the regulation Rajnigandha and marigold wreaths from superior officers and fellow Jawans, before the body is escorted by comrades to his home town.

Kargil Soldiers 25 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 28a - Renin Raj

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Wreathed in white, the color of the pure; kesariya, the color and insignia of the brave. This is the official ending of the ceremony. But should it end here… should our recognition, respect and tribute end her. And if it ends here it would be the biggest sin we do. Think about it friends. They’d promised their families and loved ones that they’d come back soon. They kept up to their words. Went as mere men, came back as heroes but in coffins…

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Friends, I am sure everyone would have watched movies like Border, LOC Kargil and Lakshya right! If watching movies like these can bring tears to many of our eyes, just think of their real life which is so painful and tough than reel life. You have seen how Jawans sacrifice their life for each others, so that at the end of the day only Mother India wins. Friends believe me it’s not just in movies this happens, it happens very much in war front too.

Kargil Soldiers 41 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 42 - Renin Raj

Sacrificing each others life to give other Jawans a chance to survive, Soldiers turning themselves into Mines and suicide bombs, this are all a bitter reality just to protect us. Jawans eagerly waiting to read a letter from back home to know about their loved ones, waiting to hear the voice of their loved ones from distance apart. We have mobile phone which connects our loved ones at just a buttons press, but in their mobile phones it always showsNO NETWORK”. They keep waiting for their leave to get sanctioned this all happens in their real life. Not just in movies theses are shown.

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We are still lucky that if our leave is not sanctioned we still have the option to take Loss of Pay, but for them leave is sanctioned only when the mission is accomplished. A mission which is never ending!! A mission ending for them is the beginning of a new mission.

Kargil Soldiers 48 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 49 - Renin Raj

Just imagine throwing an ordinary ball to 20th floor of a building from the ground, quite tough right, that’s what an Indian Jawan’s state is. Now imagine throwing the same ball from 20th floor to the ground, Cake walk, as simple as it gets right, yes that’s where our enemies are seated. we call it position advantage !!

Kargil Soldiers 50 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 51 - Renin Raj

I am sure you wouldn’t have understood what I am referring to. Let me make it simple for you all. Our Jawans are fighting from down the Himalayas ranges to top but our enemies having the advantage of being seated at the top of the mountains have a clear view of what our Jawans are doing down the valley and they track us down like a rat.

Kargil Soldiers 52 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 53 - Renin Raj

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Kargil Soldiers 56 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 57 - Renin Raj

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But our Jawans don’t loose heart, they keep moving up the mountain without having a second thought that any moment a bullet might come in opposite direction to pierce him. Any moment an artillery shell from the Bofors might come to rip him into pieces. This is what I call BRAVE HEART.

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The Bofors fires away at the post held by the enemy intruders situated across the mountain and Line of Control. Jawans close their ears and keep their hands close to their hearts as sounds of Bofors gets uncomfortable for him. The thunder of the Bofors can make them deaf forever. These guns were effectively handled by our Jawans and it proved to be very accurate and devastating in Kargil Conflict.

Corporate India pays crores of rupees to Dhoni, Yuvraj Singh, and Sachin to beat Pakistan on a Cricket field, and then why not give away just a day’s salary for someone else who is doing the same but in a battle field shedding their blood.

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Indian cricket team travel all round the world by flights, stay in seven star hotels. What about our Jawans? Each of the 15 players who won Twenty20 world cup was gifted with a home in the home-grown infrastructure project of the company- Sahara City Homes worth 25 lakhs, BCCI announced 12 Crores for the team (Each players 80 Lakhs), Special award of 1 Crore to Yuvraj Singh for hitting 6 sixes, Neo Sports presented a Mercedes Benz to RP Singh for his performance,

Kargil Soldiers 66 - Renin Raj Kargil Soldiers 67 - Renin Raj

Delhi government offers free Air services to all members of Team India for next 5 years, Haryana government has given Rs 21 lakhs to Joginder Singh, the list does not end here. They were given an over whelming welcome on returning back. We all know how Mumbai city was erupted on their home coming. Think about the army Jawans returning home, do you see the same response?

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Just have a look at the difference in reception of home coming of our heroes’

Kargil Soldiers 72 - Renin Raj


The latest IPL Buzz, cricketers were bought for Millions of Dollars, what’s the price of an Army Jawan? Any Franchise owners to buy them? Any Shahrukh Khans, Preity Zinta’s or Vijay Mallya’s to buy them, to make a promotion video on them? Are we doing justice by this way of recognizing people fighting in one field and forgetting about the people who are dying on other field? The war Field..! Think of it my dear friends… Its time to act…

Soldiers died were between the age group of 18 to 35. He fought to the death so that our children don’t have to. What should be the price of his mothers sorrow? No matter how much we give, can we ever repay the sacrifice his mother made by sending her son to protect another mother “MOTHER INDIA”

I sum up Indian Soldiers in one word “Brave”. That is what our soldiers are. Brave in the face of death. Brave in the face of fear. Facing bullets. A Million of them are dead. Many more will die. Let not their death go waste, unacknowledged.

A Red Salute from the bottom of my heart to the great Indian soldier who at all odds is ensuring that the Nation can sleep with peace in the night, with the confidence that the great Indian soldiers are awake at the border protecting us. War is never good. Only an evil person would welcome it. In an ideal world disputes between nations should be solved through dialogue. Is there any dispute greater than the value of human life itself? Hold this thought friends!!!

Remember friends, we stay up for 16 hours; He stays up for days on end.

We take a warm shower to help us wake up; He goes days or weeks without running water.

We complain of a ‘headache’, and call in sick; He gets shot at as others are hit, and keeps moving forward.

We put on your anti war shirt, and go meet up with your friends; He still fights for our right to wear that shirt.

We make sure our cell phone is in the pocket; He clutches the pendant hanging on his chain next to his dog tags.

We talk trash about our ‘buddies’ that aren’t with you; He knows he may not see some of his buddies again.

We walk down the Roads, staring at all the pretty girls; He patrols the streets, searching for insurgents.

We complain about how hot or cold it is; He wears his heavy gear, not daring to take off his helmet to wipe his eyebrow.

We go out to lunch, and complain because the restaurant got your order wrong; He doesn’t get to eat today.

Our maid makes our bed and washes our clothes; He wears the same things for weeks, but makes sure his weapons are clean.

We go to the Beauty Saloons and get our hair redone; He doesn’t have time to brush his teeth today.

We are angry because our work in office ran 5 minutes over; He’s told he will be held for an extra 2 months.

We call our loved ones and set a date for tonight; He waits for the mail to see if there is a letter from home.

We hug and kiss our loved ones like we do everyday; He holds his loved ones letter close and smells his love’s perfume.

We roll our eyes as a baby cries; He gets a letter with pictures of his new child, and wonders if they’ll ever meet.

We criticize our government, and say that war never solves anything; He sees the innocent tortured and killed by their own people and remembers why he is fighting.

We hear the jokes about the war, and make fun of men like him; He hears the gunfire, bombs and screams of the wounded.

We see only what the media wants us to see; He sees the broken bodies lying around him.

We are asked to go to the store by our parents. We don’t; He does exactly what he is told even if it puts his life in danger.

We crawl into our soft bed, with down pillows, and get comfortable; He tries to sleep but gets woken by bomb shells and bullet firings all night long.

This was the first ad for the Veer Jawan Fund: A touching one too…

He loves Hindi songs, just like you.
He hates injections; just like you
He cried each time he was in pain; just like you.
He’s been in love once or twice; just like you.
He’ll bleed if you cut him; just like you.
He’s happiest at home; just like you.
He loves the smell of rain on sun scorched earth; just like you.
He cheered India at Eden Gardens; just like you.
He dreams for his children; just like you.
He’s gone to die for a stranger; and that stranger is YOU.

VEER JAWAN  (New Delhi)

You have given your blood for our nation. We will remember you always…Lets Salute the Great Indian Soldier who gave up his today for our tomorrow.
Jai Hind.

In a country as diverse and complex as ours, how can we turn to any one religion friends? All religions are the same; the country is God,
“The Matrabhoomi”

Photograph Courtesy:

Bharat Rakshak

I am extremely grateful to Bharat Rakshak that helped me to take the pictures featured in army site. All pictures displayed in this posting are from Indian Army, unless specified otherwise. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of the copyright holder (Bharat Rakshak) is Strictly Prohibited.


April 17, 2008 - Posted by | Dedication, Personal | , , , ,


  1. Excellent, Awesome, simply superb, very good work …keep it up…. you have put in lot of efforts to do this…my sincere request …pl do try to publicize this… let people realise how unfair we are to our soldiers…

    hope to see more of such works from you…all the best…

    Comment by Deepa | April 17, 2008 | Reply

  2. My sincere SALUTE to those noble people.

    And may God give them more strength and courage to perform their noble duties and peace of mind to the families of those who have sacrificed their lives.


    Comment by Geetha | April 17, 2008 | Reply

  3. A tribute to every soldier who gives his life for his country.
    Who is the sole reason that millions of people are sleeping peacfully at night.
    We should be proud that our country has such people.

    Comment by Niveditha Sunderraj | April 17, 2008 | Reply

  4. That was an excellent post!Kudos to our Jawans.Jai Hind!

    Comment by *~*Sameera*~* | April 20, 2008 | Reply

  5. Words r nt der to explain d reality which i saw and read while going through it. Only bcos of their sacrifices v are able to enjoy every thing in this world;but vat to do v pple r nt realising or bothered abt their lives nd their family.
    atleast v should b aware of dese from now onwards.

    Comment by Anju | April 23, 2008 | Reply

  6. an eye opening and heart touching article

    Comment by kanupriya | June 16, 2011 | Reply

    • Thanks a lot KanuPriya

      Comment by Renin Raj | August 19, 2013 | Reply

  7. this is a very perspective changing post. thanks

    Comment by Manolin | April 5, 2013 | Reply

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