A MATTER OF HONOUR FOR INDIAN REPUBLIC
By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
It is indeed a matter of honour for the Republic of India that all citizens may aspire for and achieve what they wish to by dint of hard work, patience and perseverance. A citizen of India, highest of the high and lowest of the low is unfettered in nurturing a dream and making it come true. The Constitution of India is the umbrella that protects one and all from the heat and dust of inequality prevalent in the pre-independence period.
Here is the story of Lieutenant Rajendra Singh Bisht who passed out of the Indian Military Academy and became a commissioned officer in the Indian Army on June 11, 2016. He was awarded the most coveted Sword of Honour for all round excellence in academics, military studies, weapons training, tactics and above all physical fitness.
What is a pleasant surprise in the present story is the humble beginning of life of this officer – he is a son of an Army cook, Gopal Singh Bisht and Vimla Devi, a home maker from Ranikhet in Uttarakhand – where receiving good education was just a dream. The parents inspired, encouraged and did not let monetary hurdles come in the way of the boy’s educational progress.
Sainik School, Ghorakhal, Uttarakhand groomed the meritorious boy, Rajendra Singh Bisht and encouraged him to climb higher and higher. Training in education, sports, leadership and above all courage was imparted in that Sainik School that stood him in good stead in his career as a cadet at the two academies. He had the sound base built in the Sainik School and did not let any opportunity pass by. Rajendra made good use of all openings before him both at the National Defence Academy, Kharakvasla, Maharashtra and the Indian Military Academy, Dehra Dun. Rajendra was a winner of the Bronze Medal at the NDA too for standing third in order of merit.
Gentleman Cadet Rajendra Singh Bisht used every ounce of his energy to achieve the best at the Indian Military Academy. He did very well in academics, matters military, drill, tactics, and above all excelled in physical fitness. He did not let anything come in the way of his achieving the mission of becoming an army officer – the dream of his father. He knew how much his parents had sacrificed to let him climb higher and higher and he had no intention of letting them down.
Academically speaking, Rajendra Singh Bisht stood third in the order of merit but it was his all round excellence that brought him up miles ahead of other competitors. Commandant of the Indian Military Academy assisted by a team of senior army officers judged all Gentlemen Cadets on merit and merit alone. The leadership quality of all GCs was taken into account and found that Endurance of Rajendra Singh Bisht mattered much, He never said DIE or enough was enough. He pursued his goal with devotion and single minded attention.
Napoleon Bonaparte had rightly said that “the first virtue of a soldier is Endurance of fatigue, Courage is only the second virtue”. However, young Rajendra possessed and displayed both the virtues.
It was indeed a pleasant decision to award the Sword of Honour to Gentleman Cader Senior Under Officer Rajendra Singh Bisht. Indeed it was a dream come true for Rajendra’s parents. We wish the young subaltern god speed in his army career.