• bravery beyond borders of BHARAT
• By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM

TOYO, TAKLAKOT, Tibet – that is the hallowed place where stands a dilapidated Samadhi of a brave man called General Zorawar Singh, a Kahluria Rajput of the 19th century India.

He was born in 1786 in the Kangra district but his bravery blossomed in the Dogra army of Raja Gulab Singh of Jammu. He is known not only for his generalship but also statesmanship. He fought and won battles in far off foreign lands of Baltistan in the West and Tibet in the East. He annexed the foreign territories conquered by the Dogra army under his leadership and made them a part of the Jammu Raj. Ladakh is now a part of India,THANKS to bravery and sagacity of General Zorawar Singh.

Never has an individual king or captain fought and won so many ferocious battles in foreign lands located far away from the home base and eventually made them a part and parcel of his motherland as was done by General Zorawar Singh.

What a shame that not many of his compatriots know about his adventures as not many historians of repute wrote or ballad singers sung in his honour so that his name and deeds are etched in the hearts and minds of the posterity. His last resting place, the Samadhi or Chorten (in Tibetan language) looks askance at the Indian pilgrims who are on way to or are returning from holy Mount Kailash but a mute stare of helplessness is all that it receives in return.


Young Zorawar took interest in the management of his ancestral lands in Kangra and always thought of ways and means of improving the agricultural production.

He was a precocious administrator right from the beginning. Notwithstanding small agricultural holdings that Zorawar’s family possessed, he took pains to ensure that there was no encroachment on it nor an attempt to effect adverse possession to be recorded by the village official.

One of Zorawar’s cousins had an eye on a part of the common holding and made himself busy with making evil designs to grab what was not his. Zorawar was a man of integrity and expected others too to be clean in theirDEALINGS . Since the cousin concerned was bent upon playing foul in disposal of the ancestral land, a fight was bound to take place. It did. Zorawar had the better of his cousin in a sword fight and the rogue met his end. The friends and relatives of the killed cousin wished to frame Zorawar legally and have him incarcerated.

As the legal proceedings were likely to go against the interests of young Zorawar who was just a teenager, the young man decided to flee his ancestral village to escape legal proceedings and rigours of a jail life. He went to Haridwar, the famous place of pilgrimage of Hindus of all shades and hues.

Some contemporary historians of sorts believed that Zorawar landed in Haridwar, one of the most sacred places of pilgrimage for the Hindus, more for personal atonement than to escape the long arms of law. He was a religious minded straight forward fellow and went to the place of pilgrimage to pray for a Divine Pardon. He did not want to carry this baggage of guilt resulting from the unintentional killing of a cousin all his life. The earlier atonement of sin was done the better it would be.

It was, therefore, this religious atonement of sin rather than escaping arms of law that found him in a different garb in Haridwar.

Destiny had better thingsIN STORE for young Zorawar than he himself had planned. In Haridwar, Zorawar came across Rana Jaswant Singh of Doda, Jammu and the Rana saw in Zorawar the great spark of military genius and leadership that would win laurels both in war and peace. The Rana took young Zorawar to Doda along with him with the intention of training him as a soldier. He did precisely that. Young Zorawar came out of the training phase with flying colours.

He showed a keen interest in Logistics and specialised in the effective handling of Logistics as a force multiplier in war. His brilliant ideas in this field were appreciated by military experts of this branch of military strategy. What a pity, the same Zorawar, as a General and a matured and experienced commander in the battle field, lost the war at village TOYO in Tibet because of failure of Logistics in severe winter when soldiers burnt the Woodstock of their rifles and other firearms to keep themselves warm in the absence of regular fuel. Reinforcements and other essential supplies had failed to reach and the inevitable happened. More of that a little later.

While handling Logistics in Doda, young Zorawar had a chance meeting and a chat on effecting economy with the boss of the show, Raja Gulab Singh of Jammu. The new proposals for bringing in economy to save State exchequerMONEY , put forward by young Zorawar was appreciated by the Raja and he gave a green signal to implement it. Not only that; young Zorawar was made incharge of the new project that he handled with aplomb and won laurels. Raja Gulab Singh of Jammu was mighty happy with Zorawar and made him Governor of Doda-Reasi-Kistwar area and conferred on him the rank of a Wazir.

Wazir Zorawar Singh did not look back after that and his march forward was onward and onward.


Chandragupt Maurya and Samudragupt were emperors of India who had moved their forces in Central Asia, defeated foreign armies and even married princesses of Greek royal household. The distant drums of India had not been heard in Central Asia thereafter. It was left to Wazir Zorawar Singh to march there with his combined armies of Dogras, Ladakhis and other foreigners professing faiths different from the Hindu Dharma and yet make them a homogenous fighting outfit that engaged and defeated in battles commanders and common soldiers of various Muslim principalities of Baltistan.

I shall give a short pause to my narrative toOFFER bouquets to Vazir Zorawar Singh and his Dogra soldiers. Loyalty was a remarkable factor in winning battles in Baltistan. It was a two-way traffic, soldiers to the commander and back from the commander to the soldiers. The deep sense of loyalty made them victorious wherever they went and fought. The TRUST built between them over a period of time saw them through thick and thin. There were acts of chivalry beyond the call of duty. For them the Dogra kingdom of Dogra Desh with Maharajah Gulab Singh at the helm of affairs, was everything. They hesitated not in sacrificing their lives at the altar of victory in battle.

No wonder, entire Baltistan was theirs and they marched in victory processions from town to town; from principality to principality.

Gilgit, Hunza, Nagar and adjoining areas of Baltistan, far away from their homeland, Dogra Desh, came under the direct rule of Maharajah Gulab Singh whose flag flew from the hills and dales of scenic surroundings. The Dogras,THANKS to the capable military leadership of General Zorawar Singh, were monarchs of all they surveyed. The Company Bahadur of the Englishmen had given their seal of approval to the unfurling of the Dogra flag in the distant land but had cautioned them to be vary of the Russian bear that was on the prowl right there. In other words, General Zorawar Singh’s military operations were restricted within the Lakshman Rekha drawn by the British overlords.

It was a wonder of wonders. Simple Dogra men whose main profession was agriculture in villages and who lived below snow line were now conquerors and masters of Baltistan moving near snow line and practising their strategy of Loyalty, Trust, Training in peace to win wars and Will to Achieve Aim, come rain come shine. The Dogra army of Maharaja Gulab Singh of Jammu, under the capable leadership of Vazir Zorawar Singh made history and had become a force to reckon with.

Even their own kinsmen of the Lahore Durbar received a complaint from Mehan Singh, Governor of Kashmir under the Sikh rule, that prayed for putting a stop to Zorawar Singh’s campaign beyond Baltistan lest the interest of the Sikh kingdom was harmed. The Lahore durbar forwarded the complaint to Maharaja Gulab Singh who, reading between the lines, ordered Vazir Zorawar Singh to freeze in his tracks in Baltistan. TheORDERS were obeyed.

Vazir Zorawar Singh had replaced the ruler of Skardu, Ahmad Shah with his son, Muhammad Shah and the arrangement gained popular support. The new ruler started paying Rs7,000 per annum to Maharajah Gulab Singh of Jammu as a tribute and accepted the suzerainty of the Dogras.General Zorawar Singh built a new fort at Skardu and positioned a contingent of Dogra soldiers to keep an eye on the rebellious elements of Baltistan. It showed the confluence of military and political acumen of General Zorawar Singh because of which Baltistan region including Gilgit, Hunza, Nagar were a part of India. Of course, Pakistan gained control of these Northern Areas surreptitiously in August 1947 with the connivance of the rogue elements among the British officers and Muslim troops among Maharajah’s army.

Wazir Zorawar Singh despatched a contingent of the Dogra force under Wazir Lakhpat to move further up and capture Fort Astor and that was done without meeting much resistance from the Muslim forces who were already under an awesome spell of the Dogra superiority. The Darad raja was taken prisoner but had to be released later under orders of the Lahore durbar of the Sikh kingdom.


The genius of Zorawar manifested itself in his planning and preparation for an eastward march towards Tibet since the Westward March had been blocked by the Lahore Durbar and the British Governor General sitting in Fort William, Calcutta too was a bit uneasy about the Westward march of the Dogras.

Another of the six Expeditions of General Zorawar Singh to the high lands of Ladakh and the plateau of Tibet was undertaken.

The stocky Dogras climbed up the high hills from Reasi in the Jammu region to the place of origin of Suru river, traversing Zanskar made it to Leh, capital of the little Tibet, that is Ladakh. The rag tag army of Namgyal, Gyalpo of Ladakh was no match to the battle seasoned Dogras of Zorawar Singh.

The military skirmish was over before it began and the rebels disciplined for hobnobbing with defiant Botis of Baltistan. With this mission accomplished, Zorawar turned to Tibet, untrampled by foreign feet so far. Travelling westward on horseback, on foot in an unknown land through large tracts of barren land and small hamlets of strange men andWOMEN professing faith of the Buddha, the Dogras reached Taklakot or Purang near holy Mount Kailash and Lake Mansarovar. General Zorawar Singh and his compatriots, not forgetting new Ladakhi and Balti allies, had a Darshan of kailash Parvat and took a dip in lake Mansarovar. Spiritual contentment was writ large on their faces. Little did anyone realise that this was the last holy dip and Darshan as death and destruction were lurking nearby.


General Zorawar Singh had headed such a successful campaign in Ladakh, onward in Baltistan and back in Ladakh that he and his fellow soldiers did not know how to thank their stars. In his own mind the General was planning a much bigger campaign to an unknown land to fly the Dogra flag there. He was awaiting reinforcements from homeland and also a word of Shabash from Maharajah Gulab Singh for achieving the near impossible. He and his men got a pat on the back but noCLEARANCE for moving to places unknown until they had a concrete campaign plan with a sound back up of men and material.

Winter fell. There was an early snowfall. Severe cold, frosty winds, lack of fuel for warming men and armaments took their toll on life and limbs. The bayonet strength fell from day to day. Food for men and fodder for the animals was in short supply. The soldiers burnt Woodstock of rifles and other weapons to keep the human body warm. And yet frostbite did not spare the sturdy dogras from Doda, Reasi, Jammu and even Botis and Ladakhis. The soldiers’morale was in theirBOOTS .

Meanwhile, the Chinese and Tibetans had assembled a sizeable force in the Taklakot region. Being natives of the place, the cold did not damage their body and minds so much as it did to Dogras. At an opportune moment the enemy struck. In the fierce battle that ensued, a bullet pierced through the right shoulder of the General but he picked up his sword with the left hand. A Tibetan horseman came charging and pierced his lance through the chest of the brave chief; who breathed his last on the battlefield. It was the month of December in the year 1841.

A large number of soldiers of the Dogra army met their glorious end fighting on a foreign soil in inclement weather where it was difficult to distinguish friend from foe. It was a sad end to a glorious career. A Samadhi was made with large loose stones and ashes kept there. The Samadhi is known to the local people as “Sing-ba Ka Chorten”. On my way to holy Mount Kailash, I stood in front of the Samadhi to pay respectful homage to a great son of India who lies there, unwept and unsung. He did so much for Bharat Mata and isn’t it the turn of Sons of the Brave to honour the Brave?

The silence around the Samadhi in the absence of an answer is deafening indeed!

The Tibetans, being superstitious, cut small pieces of flesh from the general’s dead body to keep in their houses so that Zorawar-like chivalry was passed on among the Tibetan people fromGENERATION to generation.

The sad news was broken to Maharajah Gulab Singh in Peshawar by Commissioner Lawrence during a campaign against the tribal rebels. He hastily assembled an army of brave Dogras and despatched them towards Tibet to punish the guilty. The Dogras carried the day in a military engagement near Chushul in Ladakh and killed the enemy general in battle to avenge the death of dear old compatriot, Zorawar Singh, bravest of the brave.


Soldiers never die; they just fade away – an age-old saying is still doing rounds of military barracks when a hero who fell in battle is recalled. I must hasten to add that General Zorawar Singh is neither dead nor has faded away. The great Patriot is still with us and shall be with all Indians till eternity.

General Zorawar Singh always earned the respect of both the victorious friend and the vanquished foe. In battle he fought to defend the values of life as enshrined in our Dharma. His honesty and integrity went unchallenged till his last breath.

InBOOKS of history and research papers, General Zorawar Singh is rightly called : Napoleon of India.

Email : Mobile: 09811173590
1. May 9, 2016#2

o THANKS x 4
2. May 10, 2016#6


May 10, 2009
+0 / 1,571 / -9
Dr Gupta said: ↑
We need to tell our children the exploits of such heroes and make sure our historyBOOKS depict them in the correct light for the future generations to learn.

Of course! Its so bloody obvious our history books are full of fluff. I have to do my own extensive research to learn about the real India and that’s bloody sad. It means we have no control on how we present ourselves to the hearts and minds of the nextGENERATIONS . We leave our historical and future narrative in the hands of “others” who manipulate it and make us virtual slaves. No pride, no identity and no respect!
o Thanks x 1
3. May 10, 2016#7

Kiss_of_the_DragonSENIOR MEMBER

Aug 20, 2011
+10 / 10,900 / -0

Jamwal’s said: ↑
View attachment 304282
Is that a horse or a pony on that picture, seem like the man on the status is oversize?
4. May 10, 2016#8


Jul 17, 2015
+1 / 3,865 / -4

Kiss_of_the_Dragon said: ↑
Is that a horse or a pony on that picture, seem like the man on the status is oversize?
Considering he was a Rajput so his height must be somewhat similar to these Indians.

o THANKS x 1
5. May 10, 2016#9


Jan 1, 2010
+85 / 59,742 / -17

Baltistan itself wasn’t a single entity .. It was ruled by several Khanates and Emirates .. Small states ruled by lords .. No match for a bigger army/state ..

As for Pak.. Well Baltistan ceded with Pak in November 1947… The people who fought off the Dogra & British occupation were the locals and Muslim officers and 1 British officer ..

@Wajsal. @Gikmet Baltee
Jamwal’s said: ↑
Considering he was a Rajput so his height must be somewhat similar to these Indians.

View attachment 304352

View attachment 304353
What is the tallest community in India? Punjabis?
Last edited: May 10, 2016
6. May 10, 2016#10


Nov 24, 2015
+0 / 707 / -2

He was from my state proud of him,put fear in the heart of enemy
o THANKS x 1
7. May 10, 2016#11


Dec 9, 2012
+2 / 4,170 / -0
Jamwal’s said: ↑
The Tibetans, being superstitious, cut small pieces of flesh from the general’s dead body to keep in their houses so that Zorawar-like chivalry was passed on among the Tibetan people fromGENERATION to generation.

The Sikh Confederacy were annihilated after intruding into Tibet proper. Zorowar Singh, the commanding general, was captured and decapitated. Yeah right, they so very respected him.

Indians are truly world champion when comes to creating fairy-tale story to stroke their own ego.

Oh wait, did the author say Zorowar Singh was defeated due to cold weather? Same reason as 1962.
o THANKS x 2
Last edited: May 10, 2016
8. May 10, 2016#12


Jul 17, 2015
+1 / 3,865 / -4

Fattyacids said: ↑
The Sikh Confederacy were annihilated after intruding into Tibet proper. Zorowar Singh, the commanding general, was captured and decapitated. Yeah right, they so very respected him.

Indians are world champion when comes to creating fairy-tale story to stroke their own ego.

Oh wait, did the author say Zorowar was defeated due to cold weather? Same reason as 1962.
And how do you like the Dogra Revenge when they beheaded the Qing Chinese General during battle of Chushul 1842.

Chinese were so humiliated after this rout that they signed the treaty of Chushul and PRC still cry of Mc mohan line Lamo

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By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
The Indian Army encourages arboriculture. Both officers and men live amidst green environment in most of the cantonments. Living in green environment becomes a part of the Army culture. If the officers and Jawans are deployed in an area devoid of green foliage and full grown trees, they make sure that plants, shrubs, creepers are planted around barracks and married accommodation of both officers and Jawans so that in days to come there is the same greenery around that they were used to in the previous well established cantonments.

Once a Vriksha Mitra always a Vriksha Mitra. The Army personnel carry this habit of being foliage friendly while they are in service and since old habits die hard, the post-retirement days see their green fingers at work. I am not aware of the award of Vriksha Mitra going to our Army personnel who are responsible for greening the area around wherever they go. It is just one of those things that happen in life but remain unexplained. Never mind, just be at it and keep planting whatever the soil accepts.
Having wore the Olive Green uniform of the Indian Army for more than three decades I too imbibed the arboriculture and it became an inseparable part of me even after I hung up my boots. May I just make a mention that I had started wearing the khaki uniform of a boy scout right from class V in 1942 right up to 10 plus 2 level in PEC and NCC senior division at graduation level in 1950-52. Right through these years our officers, both British and Indian, lay an emphasis on planting trees and shrubs for an extra dose of oxygen for our healthy lungs. No wonder the deadly disease named TB was absolutely unknown in the rank and file of the uniformed personnel.


In 1990 I retired from the Indian Army as a Brigadier. I was permitted to retain the government accommodation on the Shanti Path, courtesy Shri N.N. Vohra, the then Defence Secretary. Of course, the lower rungs of the bureaucratic establishment ensured that I paid market rent for the lovely house of mine and I paid without pangs. I moved into my own house, a lovely class V house called a single unit. My wife and grown up progeny heaved a sigh of relief that there was none upstairs to throw the unwanted stuff at us living downstairs. We were the monarch of all we surveyed.
Best of all things, there was open space in front and rear of the house. Our green fingers started itching, not for long. The front space within our boundary was put to good use by planting fruit trees like pomegranate and flowering plants like chameli and bela, not mentioning their poor cousin the money plant. What threw the gauntlet was the waste land in the rear of the house that had been used as an open air toilet for decades. Our well intentioned neighbours and I picked up the gauntlet and made up our minds to convert the waste land into a green zone. It was and continues to be Noida land and we never claimed the right of a Pretender to the Throne. We just pooled our ideas but NOT money or resources. Each one of six of us and a self- invitee from across the road showed the determination to go ahead with Project Green, come what may. The whispering campaign against us launched by distant neighbours with negative thinking who had missed their promotion in Army because of negativity, now beat their drums calling us land grabbers. We gave them a royal ignore. Now, after six years or so, their distant drums have fallen silent.

Sudha, my wife of almost half a century has a green finger too. She loves to take a khurpi in hand before going into action in our rear garden and wield it with aplomb as if it were the M 40 assault rifle of a commando. I have given her the honorific title of a head mali. Children of ours who have now sired their own children enjoy our action in the garden. We enjoy prepararion of a flower bed more than we do with preparation of our own bed in the Shayan Kaksh. Richa, Shikha and Gaurav take keen interest in our UPVAN whenever they find time from their professions that provide bread and butter.
UPVAN came into being playfully. We still enjoy our sittings and hold intellectual Goshthis with men and women of letters who are friends of our student days and happen to pass by. UPVAN is still a playgroung for our grandchildren and their friends who love to be there and enjoy the fresh breeze. Of course, lately a big snake put in its appearance right in the middle of our UPVAN but it passed by without even saying a casual Hello. Sudha and I were sitting in our garden CHAUPAL when the said Snake called on us in the UPVAN. I took visual notice of its appearance and its quiet slithering away into our neighbor, Shilpika’s garden. I rang her up to warn her of the uninvited guest but by then it had moved into oblivion.

Nevertheless the said snake remained a topic of conversation among the old and the young alike for quite a few days. Vidushi, our granddaughter of six and a half years told me in confidence that her mother, Aditi has forbidden her visit to Upvan. Bu she did listen patiently stories of various snakes not forgetting TAKSHAK Nag who did bite Samrat Parikshit. Indeed the great Yajna performed by King Janmejaya almost saw the end of the reptiles from Planet Earth but for a divine intervention. Children wished that the last SWAHA after that last mantra of the Yajna should have seen the end of Takshak Nag and its progeny. Alas! That was not to be.

Our UPVAN is as popular among our neighbours as it used to be before appearance of the serpent.We gather in the Chaupal to exchange views on topic of the day. Pradhan Mantri Narendra Modi does make an appearance in our conversation and we all love him. He is not only the Hindu Hriday Samrat but also a beau ideal of a common man on the streets of Tokyo, Beijing, Thimpu, Kathmandu and so on. Now New York and Washington DC are going to be added in this lovely list.
UPVAN facilitates our mental travel to all important places and capitals of important countries of the world. We do not buy a ticket for the Bullet train but travel from Tokyo to Kyoto to visit the Buddhist shrine along with Narandra bhai Modi and Shinzo Abe, the two Prime Ministers of Bharat and Japan respectively. Xi Jinping, President of China will walk the talk with Narendra bhai along banks of the Sabarmati river besides Bapu’s Ashram. UPVAN will facilitate our sharing Modi’s talk with President Obama of the United States of America.
Indeed we all Octogenarians and Septuagenarians are indebted to the UPVAN Chaupal for helping us keep abreast of happenings on the international horizon

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By Brig. Chitranjan Sawant,VSM

“Jeevem Sharadah Shatam….Adinah Syam Sharadah Shatam”, that is a mantra of the Veda, the most ancient scripture in the library of man. Maharshi Dayanand Saraswati, founder of the Arya Samaj opined that Vedas were revealed into hearts of Rishis at the beginning of Shrishti or Creation. The Mantras contained therein have been chanted for many thousand years by men and women in India and abroad who profess and practise the Vedic Dharma. Max Mueller, a German Vedalogist but a Christian by faith, meditated on the Ved Mantras and wrote treatises thereon.

The prayer, or Mantra quoted right at the beginning of the present article, means that a Vedic devotee prays to live a life of one hundred years without being dependent on others physically, mentally, financially and spiritually. The praying person draws knowledge and strength from the society and repays to the society in one form or the other. A Vedic person does service to society selflessly by imparting knowledge to one and all without discrimination when he enters the Vanprastha and Sanyas Ashram at an appropriate age. The prayer, or Prarthana in Sanskrit-Hindi languages, is supplemented with Purusharth or Action by the individual. Everyone has to do something or the other to live and it is called Karma in the Sanskrit language. The Vedic philosophy of life is based on Karma and Karmaphal or the result of action or inaction. What you sow, so must you reap. Do good to others and others will do good to you. This philosophy of life has a bearing on your longevity

. Mind is the man; therefore, convince yourself that you have to live a healthy and happy life by becoming a Centenarian. Your resolve will show results in a positive way. Make up your mind and act accordingly. It is the Mind of Man that controls his or her body action. In the Army, we say that a General loses a battle in his mind first and then on the ground. One should make a resolve not to lose battle of life. JEEVEM SHARADAH SHATAM IS THE MANTRA TO BE CHANTED MORNING AND EVENING.


Aahar that is the food intake influences the Vichar that is the thought process and in totality shapes your personality that is Vyaohar. If the food and drink are so important , an individual should know its guiding principles. The finer details may be worked out accordingly.
HIT BHUK – MIT BHOOK – RIT BHOOK – these three are the guiding principles. In the same Sanskrit language order, it may be said – Eat what is beneficial to body; eat less than the full capacity of the stomach – eat food that has been bought with the MONEY EARNED by the sweat of the brow honestly, without an element of dishonesty and cheating.

A piece of advice from a good dietician will encourage the Vedic person to eat fibre food, leafy vegetables, coarse grain and fruits. Avoiding red meat, stale food, saturated fats, hydrogenated oils etc promotes health in a human being. It is a scientifically proven fact that a Vegetarian person is healthier mentally and physically than a non-vegetarian person.
Eat less than what your hunger demands – that has been the guiding principle for generations. In the normal course, if your body requires six slices of bread, a health conscious person will probably prefer to eat only four and a half slices of bread. The basic idea is that one must not overload one’s stomach with food, howsoever good it may be.
Generally speaking, not many men and women pay attention to the factor of buying foodstuff with honest money. The Vedic philosophy of life lays an emphasis on the factor of honesty in keeping you healthy and making you a centenarian. The factor of honesty will keep an individual not only healthy physically and mentally but also contribute to spiritual wellness so essential for a disease-free centenarian.
Now you are all set to take off on your mission to live a healthy and happy life for a century and may be more. The concluding part of that mantra is: BHUYASHCH SHARADAH SHATAT – MAY I LIVE FOR MANY YEARS AFTER BECOMING A CENTENARIAN.
Indeed the food of the mind is as important as food for the body, if not more important. What kind of literature do you read? It the reading material promotes spiritualism, brings you closer to Divinity, inspires you to walk on the Vedic path and do selfless service to society, you are OK with the way of life that you have chosen. On the other hand, if your reading material makes you a charlatan, drives you to a life where sex plays a predominant role always, it is time you changed your literature and way of life. It is conceded that sex plays an important role in a person’s life but it is not the be-all and end-all of life. Please choose your road to travel and walk carefully on it. But walk as our Vedic Rishis have guided us : Charaiveti Charaiveti –
Move on Move on.
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By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM

Rohangiyas have migrated from Myanmar to settle down elsewhere to escape persecution.
Why are Rohingya Muslims being thrown out of Myanmar? The primary reason is that they failed to gel with the majority population of the land. Myanmar mainly comprises Buddhists who are, generally speaking, peaceful people. They go around their daily business and pray in Pagodas – Buddhist temples.
Rohingya Muslims formed armed squads to attack local police pickets and kill them. Where did they get the arms and armaments from? Needs in depth investigation. The Myanmar Army came to the rescue of their people and dealt with Rohingya Muslim bandits meat and proper. When they could not face the Army onslaught, they fled to Bangladesh and Bharat.
Imagine what sinister design is there to let Rohingya Muslims of Myanmar travel to Jammu and settle down there? Reportedly, there are terrorists among the Rohingya Muslims whi obviously are not well disposed towards Bharat. Who is scheming to make the Jammu region a Muslim majority area? Of all places, why settle them in Jammu? Apparently, all is not well with the so called liberal gang of India who are out to defame the well intentioned acts of the BJP led government at the Centre and in various States.
The matter of granting refugee status to Rohingyas is being heard by the Supreme Court of India. The Government of India has presented its case and said that settling Rohingya Muslims in India will not be in our national interests. There are many security issues involved therein and these must be addressed adequately.
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By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM

The good news is : both India and China have agreed to mutually disengage in Doklam, Bhutan. The Chinese troops had entered Doklam 70 days ago declaring the high ground to be a part of China. In fact China had gone beyond cartographic aggression and their boots were on the ground that belonged to Bhutan. Bhutan and Bharat have an age-old agreement to defend each other if there ever was foreign invasion with intent to occupy a piece of territory that historically and geographically belonged to Bharat or Bhutan. Here was a clear cut case of China committing blatant aggression against Bhutan by physically occupying Doklam claiming it wrongly to be a part of China. Bharat was duty bound to dispatch its forces to defend Doklam and it did precisely that.
A pertinent question arises why of all neighbouring countries China chose to send its army to Bhutan? Well the answer lies in a diplomatic tangle. On account of belligerent postures of China and attempting to browbeat India, the Indian leadership decided not to attend an Asian meet hosted by China. The only neighbouring country to stand by India was Bhutan and it too did not go to China to attend the regional meet. Bhutan thus displayed that it was a friend of India’s and be together through thick and thin.
Since China wished to punish Bhutan militarily,it sent its contingents of People’s Liberation Army to Doklam, a strategic plateau. China had mistakenly surmised that India would accept it meekly and not resist. Their experience of aggression in Tibet in early 50’s when it had gone unchallenged by India under Jawaharlal Nehru had emboldened them to commit another aggression in Bhutan.
India under the Prime Ministership of Narendra Modi was a different story that the Chinese did not take into account. Narendra bhai Modi is made of sterner stuff. He gave his word of mutual friendship to the Bhutanese government and under the Chanakya Niti it was his Dharma to honour the commitment. If India had allowed China to browbeat it, none of its neighbours would ever have stood by India. The troops of the Indian Army charged with the defence of Doklam stood face to face with the Chinese troops, eyeball to eyeball. The international observers were around to monitor who blinks first.
The no-war; no-peace situation at Doklam in Bhutan dragged on for 70 days. Some China observers thought that it might result in a shooting war between India and China. Nevertheless, there was no aggravated tension on the 4000 Km long India-China border. There was no massive deployment of troops, armaments or artillery on either side. Of course, the Chinese media was rather harsh in its choice of words while describing the situation in Doklam. Even the official newspapers like Xin Hua, the Global Times and official spokesmen always reminded India of the humiliating defeat that it had suffered in the 1962 war. Indians had only replied that 2017 was not 1962 and the military situation had undergone a tremendous change.
On the diplomatic front Pradhan Mantri Narendra bhai Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping never spoke disparagingly against each other nor ran down each other’s country. The war of words and physical pushing-pulling were left to the troops of both the countries facing each other at several points along the long borders. The air battles or Naval cruisers were never brought in by either side.
One could safely surmise that cool winds were blowing on either side of the mighty Himalayas and none of the two giant neighbours had any intention of changing it to hot air. The big countries of the world, the super powers had expressed their opinion that diplomacy was the way out of this impasse. USA, Japan spoke in India’s favour that its stand was correct as per laws of international justice. If there as an impasse, the only way out was a route of diplomacy. India’s foreign minister, Sushma Swaraj had laid India’s cards on the table by saying that was would not benefit either side.
Russia, USA, Japan and others smoked the pipe of peace. China too was not keen on doing actual battle drills for a shooting war. Agreed that its rail lines from Chengdu to Lhasa were running and the rolling stock stood well oiled and greased. However, the Chinese railway engineers had received no orders to lay rail lines to Bhutan’s or India’s borders. It is quite clear to strategists that a shooting war between two major belligerents needs months’ preparations logistically and mobilization of troops in a big way. There was no evidence to show that anything of that sort was taking place.
At best it was a war of words; a battle of books. The Indian officers and soldiers were explained the Chanakya Neeti. The PLA men read time and again that to defeat an enemy, China need not take recourse to a shooting war. Sun Tzu, the world famous Chinese philosopher and Strategist, read by military minds all over the world said : Soften the enemy psychologically, put his morale in his boots by intellectual war of words, brow beating and putting Fear in his heart and mind. He used words to that effect. Swundz (in Chinese) was as correct then as he is correct now. Doklam is a modern example of the Chinese Generals going to war without an army or weapons’ Psychological warfare was all that they wished to wage.
Narendra bhai Modi is the Indian General, strategist and Diplomat all rolled into one, who was never seen or heard before by the Chinese officers and men in uniform. PLA, guided by President Xi Jinping had no strategic plan to go to war against the Indian Army or top-notch General in half-sleeve kurta who had been trained in the backyards learning lessons in patriotism. No Chinese weapon was ever made that could break the morale of the Indian Nation ably led by Narendra bhai Modi.
China wishes to pay undivided attention to the South China Sea and things going on over there. Doklam was a minor issue that had cropped up inadvertently by a silly mistake somewhere down the line in Beijing. An honest solution had to be found without any of the two neighbours losing face. Moreover Pradhan Mantri Narendra Modi would be going to Beijing on 3 September 2017 to participate in the BRICS meeting. Modi and Xi would be face to face in China and both leaders wish to put their best foot forward. An honorable course of action was to agree to a mutual expeditious withdrawal of troops of both the countries. There is no victory and no defeat for either side.
A good honorable solution to a military impasse was sought and found in the realm of Diplomacy.
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Swami Dayanand Saraswati
By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM
I stood facing the Kailash Parvat in Tibet two decades ago. The solid black granite Shiv ling style natural massive rock jutting out in the midst of yellow sand hillocks impressed me. The pilgrims of many nationalities on a religious mission to meet the real Shiva by going round the Kailash Parvat in almost three days was a test of faith. I failed the test notwithstanding my completion of the Parikrama of the holy hill of gigantic dimension. Shiv Ji never blessed me with his benign darshan nor did I realize His presence in the heart of my hearts.
When I confessed the truth of non-realisation of the great spirit to my fellow travelers they instantly dubbed me a sinner. Had they realised the presence of Almighty Shiv Ji themselves? Their silence was deafening. They did not wish to tell a lie and yet they had no moral courage to tell the truth.
The holiest of holy places in the concept of the Hindus, Buddhists, Jains, German explorers and the rest of holy men and women did not have the abode of Mahadev, the Almighty as narrated in various scriptures. Had my journey of many weeks from New Delhi to Kailash Parvat produced no tangible results? No, not exactly so. I did succeed in recording enough material on my handy tape recorder to produce and broadcast later radio features in Hindi in five parts for the Akashvani or All India Radio. They had commissioned me and I did not fail them.
Nevertheless the nagging doubt about Kailash Parvat being the abode of Lord Shiva remained in my mind the same way as it was in the mind of boy Moolshankar when he sat in the Shiv temple in Tankara on the Mahashivratri at the age of fourteen. He too had entertained the genuine doubt about the Shiv ling in the temple being a replica of Ishwar. His doubt was summarily dismiseed by his snoozing father that the real Siva resided on the Kailash Parvat. Eight years later the teenager left his parental home to look around the real Shiva. He roamed from place to place for fourteen years and realized his dream of finding the Truth when he knocked at the door of Dandi Swamy Virjanand at Mathura. In the interim period of his great quest of Truth, Moolshankar had entered the Sanyas Ashram as Dayanand Saraswati.
Now the Shishya Dayanand had found the real Guru in Swami Virjanand and the Guru had found the real disciple who would undertake a mission none had dared to accept heretofore. It was VED PRACHAR. The Guru taught Ashtadhyayi and transformed his pupil as an inspired human being who would always be on a quest of the Truth and would never stop asking until he had found what he was looking for.
The Guru-Shishya relationship continued for a little over two and a half years until the Pragya Chakshu Dandi Swami Virjanand chose to send Dayanand Saraswati on a unique mission of demolishing Untruth, eradicating superstitions and establishing the Vedic way of life. Dayanand Saraswati set out on the Truth seeking mission and did not look back.
Dayanand Saraswati took to writing, public speaking, engaging in intellectual public discourses and demolishing the Untruth through Shastrarth- relying on scriptures for the search of Truth and finding the final answer in the Infallible Vedas.
Swami Dayanand Saraswati was a great seeker of Truth and had no hesitation in correcting himself if and when he perceived that he had gone wrong. Of course, his decisions on the core issues were irrevocable. Let us take a few examples of his revocable decisions. He founded four Sanskrit Pathshalas with great aplomb. However, when he found that the teachers and taught were following the old wrong path of learning and worshipping the false gods, Swami Dayanand Saraswati did not hesitate even for a moment before ordering their closer and disbandment. When he found that the scribes had not followed his dictations in the right spirit while he was producing his master treatise, Satyarth Prakash(1874 edition), the Rishi had no hesitation in acknowledging that his fundamental faith had been misrepresented and he recalled that edition from circulation. He sat in the Navlakha Mahal at Udaipur, diligently corrected the glaring errors and brought out the second edition of the Satyarth Prakash in 1883.
Fortunately for the Arya Samaj, founded in 1875 in Mumbai, the second edition was given the final touches by the Rishivar himself before he breathed his last on 30 October 1883 at Ajmer under tragic circumstances.
When it came to belief in the existence of One Ishwar who was Nirakar, the Rishi was always firm and pursued the principle of Truth given in the Vedic Samhita with single minded devotion. This decision of his was irrevocable, come what may. No threat or inducement could move him from his rock-like stand on the subject of One Nirakar Ishwar and the infallibility of the Vedas.
Maharana of Mewar, Sajjan Singh Ji once made the mistake of offering Swami Dayanand the post of Mahant of Ek Lingji mandir to which the Mewar rajya was dedicated, the Swami declined the offer. He even chided the Maharana in these words: Maharana, your principality is a small one and I can run across it in one breath but if I disobey the diktat of the Almighty where would I find a shelter because He controls the entire universe.
Swami Dayanand was a great nationalist. Nationalism was a part and parcel of his faith. He believed in self rule and was never happy under the British suzerainty. He minced no words while eulogizing independence in his treatise, Satyarth Prakash. Never mind how benevolent the foreign rule is; Swarajya or self-rule would be better any day under any circumstances. Mind you, Rishivar expressed the revolutionary thought when the British rule in India was at its zenith. Fearlessness in the pursuit of Truth was the hallmark of Swami Dayanand Saraswati.
SWADHARM, SWABHASHA, SWASANSKRITI are indeed the three immoveable and unshakable pillars of Rashtra Dharm or Nationalism. One must follow the Vedic Dharm, must read, write and speak Sanskrit or Hindi and follow the culture as handed down from generation to generation. Swadharme Nidhanam Shreyah – it is indeed virtuous to die doing one’s duty and not deviating from the path of Truth. As far as own language is concerned, it was Swami Dayanand Saraswati who prescribed for the Arya Samaj to transact all correspondence in Hindi, have discourses, pravachans in Hindi. The Swami led the Aryas from the front. His own mother tongue was Gujarati, his stupendous studies were in Sanskrit but he chose to write his major books like Satyarth Prakash, Rigvedadi Bhashya Bhumika and Sanskar Vidhi in Hindi. He impressed on all Aryas to write to the Hunter Commission on language selection for official work that it should be Hindi alone. As far as the Sanskriti is concerned, no one was a better advocate for inculcating it than the founder of the Arya Samaj himself.
Sadly the false protagonists of the malignant Hinduism had excluded women folk from all religious activities. The important half of the Hindu society was bereft of the Vedic knowledge as they were forbidden to enter the realm of the Vedas. Stree Shudrau Nadhiyatamit Shruteh – so said the illiterate Brahmins and thus weakened their own followers. Maharishi Dayanand Saraswati reversed this thought process and cited many examples wherein the learned women had fully participated in the religious discourses. How could they do so without studying the Vedas, asked the Swamy. Womenfolk are indeed grateful to Swami Dayanand Saraswati for providing them the right to Vedic education and entering the social life on the same plane as the men folk.
The Arya Samaj made its existence felt in the Punjab when in June 1877, in the presence of Swami Dayanand Saraswati, it was founded as a socio-religious organization in the garden of Dr Rahim Khan in Lahore. The 28 Niyams originally formed in Mumbai in 1875 were chiseled and in Lahore the number stood at Ten. They are in vogue till today.
Five Niyams or principles out of ten lay an emphasis on the TRUTH. This brings out the main theme of this essay that Swami Dayanand was relentless in his pursuit of Truth. Not only he himself pursued the path of Truth but he enjoined on all Aryas to follow suit. It would be an ideal situation where all Aryas not only follow the principle of Truth but also impress upon the new comers, the new generation to do likewise. It is rather unfortunate that the Arya Samaj suffers from dissent and division because many Anaryas or Dasyu have surreptitiously enrolled themselves as members without having any faith in the Vedas or the Ten Principles of the Arya Samaj. Consequently, there are legal disputes where the Dasyu leave no stone unturned in capturing power and the immoveable assets of the Arya Samaj. It is deplorable indeed.
In his Will and last Testament Swami Dayanand Saraswati had advised Aryas not to rush to courts of law to resolve disputes, if any. He had counseled that the Aryas must settle the disputes in the Arya Samaj itself. Unfortunately, the false Aryas believing in false gods are defiant of the Sweekar Patra or Will of our own Rishivar.
SANGATHAN is the need of the hour. It is the pious duty of all Aryas to desist from capturing seats of power for property and work unitedly with brother Aryas for the Prachar of the Vedic Dharm. As Swami Dayanand Saraswati had carried out the wish and will of Dandi Swami Virjanand, it is incumbent upon all Aryas to obey the wish and will of Swami Dayanand Saraswati and carry on with the mission of preaching and practicing the VEDIC DHARM.
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Learning the Ropes to HAPPINESS
By Brigadier Chitranjan Sawant,VSM

With the permission of our readers, may I say again : Happiness is a state of mind. That explains why I say it aloud every now and then: old boy, your mental make up says that you may not live long to be a Centenarian. I dismiss the idea as it is hostile to my game plan. I command myself “ Get up, get going and learn from the experience of sages of yore to imbibe that and merge with the day-to-day life of modern times The difference between the Gurukul life of yore and the life in a modern Gurukul is tremendous. In the interest of the Vedic way of life ,we may abjure a comparison between the two. Both are products of the Vedic way of life but the long gap in time and living has made them two separate entities. . Remind yourself that Happiness Is yours just for the asking. Indeed there are certain pragmatic steps that the man or a woman seeking happiness has to imbibe until It becomes his and her second nature.
Let us take a look at our time table of learning basic steps that would take us to our El Dorado where one lives and learns the basic ropes with eye set on the ultimate goal; happiness.
ALBERT SCHWAITZER has observed people around and lived life as a pragmatic philosopher. He says :
“ Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”
Happiness Is a state of mind characterized by contentment and satisfaction .Sources of happiness are diverse and unique. So are the people we come across. After having talked to men and women from different sections of the society both in India that is Bharat and abroad, it is found that certain common factors emerge. Let us take a look at them. I call those factors that lead to happiness as the Golden Nine.
Many observant friends and colleagues of mine, both in uniform and in the civil society have had an engrossing chat with me on the road that leads to citadel of happiness. I concurred with some and differed with others. Here I give a resume of what our common and combined operation and observations were. These Nine factors have been worked out and chosen after a brain-storming session.
When I need Divine help, I pray for it. Believe me, the help was always around corner and came on time. Of course, I too never sat idle. I used to strive for a favourable solution and also pray to Param Pita Parmatma. There was a confluence of prayer and purusharth. This kind of confluence never goes haywire. I took the first step to the rope and climbed clumsily but I did come to know the ropeway to happiness. Thus the journey that began that way refused to stop despite clumsy attempts o f second ladder of relations and friends to throw a red herring. As stated before, my wife chose to hover around me and so did the daughter. In India, that is Bharat blood is still thicker and stronger than water.
Spiritualism is worth looking for as a pillar of strength. There are no rituals but the belief in the Nirakar ISHWAR who is omnipresent and sees all without being seen firms up. Here is the natural reserve of strength that a supplicant may draw from as and when the need arises. Thus when a devotee has the divine strength to fall back upon, he cannot but be Happy.
Positive Thinking is not mere absence of NegativeThinking. When one ceases to think or act in a manner that causes pain and grief or a loss to others no more due to an act or omission of the gentleman that is, we may say that the said person has given up Negative attitude to life and sailed to the state where he or she entertains only Positive Attitude to life and letters. In this kind of frame of mind, there are no commas but full stops only. An individual with a Positive Attitude to life cannot but be happy.
Natural way of life is a happy way of life. Be yourself and never try to put up a show. Please do not show off either because that show would be without naturalness. Happiness lives in a natural person but abandons a soul that shows off. An unnatural life or an unnatural act leads to punishment as they violate one law or the other. If you are your natural self, you are a happy man.
The Reader’s Digest runs a column of jokes taken from all societies and published unedited. The jokes in their natural form are either a hit or a miss. In this case, I find that the joke was a hit and guests had gone delirious. They are all happy men and women. Laughter is a piece of evidence to prove that the man who laughs a lot is indeed a happy man.
A good laughter strengthens the lungs and prevents cardio-vascular problems .Laugh a lot and effect a tremendous saving on medical bills. A healthy person is indeed a happy person.
Happiness follows one who lives in the Present. You feel the Present and you solve the problem of the Present. Those who live in the past lose touch with the Present and in due course of time become incompetent to tackle the present day crises. Those who live in the Future are invariably gripped with Fear of the Unknown. FEAR is the biggest enemy of Man. To overcome this, the VEDAS suggest chanting o a Mantra and fortifying your beliefs to make your mind ABHAY – free from fear. A fearful person can never be happy. A fearless person will always be happy.
Fine Arts, Music –vocal or instrumental ,painting or forming a word picture of an event or individual are various branches of Culture. The culture has to be cultivated by an individual because it does not come on its own. In difficult times, one may paint or sing or play on a musical instrument and divert the mind from problems that cause unhappiness. When unhappiness or a tense atmosphere is taken care of, a relaxed atmosphere will replace a tense situation. Happiness will follow as a natural corollary.
The sexual attraction draws a man and a woman close to each other. They not only admire each other but also touch gently or grope into the forbidden zone. If both are adults, they proceed further in the privacy of a house or a garden and have sexual intercourse. That mutual act is indeed a source of joy. More of it gives more joy. So, having healthy sex between two consenting adult males in the privacy of the house is now legal as per a judgement of the Delhi High Court. Since sex is a source of joy, so go ahead and have more of it until you are happy and wish to enhance the state of sex-generated happiness no more.
Mind is the man. The way you eat, what you eat and how much you eat will determine your mental make-up and physical body. One of the Vedic Rishis who was also a physician had recommended to both the masses and the classes all about the food intake. In anutshell,his advice was: Eat what is beneficial to mind and body. Thus healthy diet of green leafy vegetables, no red meat and over-spiced dishes,a lot of fluid and abjuring junk food was described as a source of happiness. Secondly, eat less than what your stomach can accommodate. Finally ,eat food bought with money earned by the sweat of brow and not by murdering the moneyed men.
Indeed, a lot of emphasis was placed on a lean diet, a healthy diet and an honest purchase of food. Well, it is this kind of food that may be joy-generating.
Right from childhood I have been hearing from the school counselors that a systematic daily exercise will keep the body fit and a mental exercise will not let mind be lethargic. Since everybody wishes to live long ,one patiently listens to the piece of advice that is repeatedly given by both the PT instructors and other teachers. However, words are not enough to see you through. Practice and practice will make healthy and happy. Health and Happiness are twins who go together hand in hand.
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