The Doyan Of Indian English Writing – Lt Col Manohar Malgonkar

English history is intertwined with India. After all 200 years is a long period and it cannot be wished away. The British rule threw up local Englishmen who made India their home.They loved the country and some explored, some hunted, some preserved relics and monuments and some wrote about India.

The Eastern Command was in existence, but the IAF never carried out any exercises for hill attacks and operations. All the exercises were carried out for operations in the plains. This is hard to stomach now and the role of successive Air Chiefs from Air Marshal S Mukherjee down wards needs evaluation. The IAF was not conditioned for any form of operation in the hills and the heights of the Himalayas. However the IAF was combat ready for operations in the plains. Thus when the PLA moved in a logical corollary would have been to use the IAF as a ground support to blunt the Chinese offensive. This however did not happen and the Army fought it’s battle without Air Support. Thus the cardinal principle of Douhet was thrown to the winds.

The Ethiopian Empire included Abyssinia. This was a vague area with a rough rocky terrain. The land was full of mountains and hills with no transportation facilities. The major task in the invasion of the Empire was to cross all these hurdles which was a dreadful task. This is the reason why there had been no invasions on the Ethiopian Empire till then. The British government was firm to cross all these barriers and free the captives.

After the British left India in 1947 the activities and all assets at MHOW were taken over by the joinindianarmy.nic.in. The Army further expanded the facilities at MHOW and at one stage also housed the Army Training Command. The MHOW bazaar is a tribute to the English who patronized this market. In addition the Army continues to maintain an excellent club for officers with a Golf course. Sir Winston Churchill who spent quality time with the Indian Army also was posted at MHOW and his house can still be seen though it is in a dilapidated condition.

MHOW has a salubrious climate and is well connected by road and rail. It is good and relaxing place for a quiet week end and is recommended for a visit. But all credit to the Raj and the British army for setting up this excellent center.

What really kills Pakistan is their lack of a true light machine gun in general service. Their paratroopers have the Minimi, but their line infantry make do with more medium machine guns. When a Pakistani platoon meets and Indian platoon, both sides will be well-served by their MAGs, and the Pakistanis by their excellent MG-3s. However, the Indian’s will also have their Negevs at the squad level, which means a lot more firepower and with greater mobility to boot.

On that day itself I gave up terrorist activities. I surrendered to the army. Judicial enquiry was made and the judges said: The government wants to bring those who have strayed by bringing them into mainstream of life. I was set free and so I started training activities here. Amongst those children whom I educate along with Muslims there are kids of Hindu Pandits too. While carrying out this task I have understood the true meaning of religion. True religion means loving the entire world and sharing pain and anguish of others. Religion can never mean killing anybody. It in fact is a crime of gigantic proportion.

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