THE NARROW ROAD

The Republic

A narrow road divides St. Stephens’ and Hindu College. It is not more than 16 steps across, but speak to the students of either college, and they will have you believe that you were crossing a chasm to a different philosophy. All this is hogwash, of course. But there is a romance to college life, much of it in the heads of those who go to college.

It was 1991 and I crossed that road everyday. I did not have friends in Hindu. All my friends were in Hansraj, where I spent countless evenings. I have fond memories of Sanjeev (also a school buddy) who is now the MD & CEO of an upcoming cosmetic surgery brand, Arvind who is now a senior HR professional with the Taj Group, Anand who is remembered for loudly singing “we didn’t start the fire” when everyone believed that he obviously did, and Anurag who now directs violent movies. Anurag was not a friend but he was visible around the friends who I sat with, and with whom I wasted away much of my graduation years. Anthony, who ran the Hansraj canteen, believed that I was a student. I think I still owe Anthony thirteen rupees; if memory serves, I think it was a Thums Up and two samosas.

I had to cross Hindu College to get to Hansraj, and would sometimes run into this tall and academic looking young man. We never spoke. A smile and raised eyebrows were acceptable greetings. And once, we did speak. He spoke English with a precise accent, was aggressive yet polite in speech and his diction and pronunciation were spot on. When he spoke Hindi, it was with a very slight accent. Was it Bengali or Assamese? No clue.

I left St. Stephens College in 1992 and joined the Indian Army in 1993. I kept in touch with Sanjeev and Arvind. I don’t know where Anand went. We all know where Anurag went.

I don’t watch much TV, but once I did tune in to watch news. It was a debate and the anchor was conducting it with a very familiar, controlled aggression. There was something about the way he looked and spoke, which triggered a memory. Then it struck me. He was the tall guy from Hindu College.

One day in 2016, Burhan Wani was killed, and in sheer frustration of seeing multitudes worshipping a dead terrorist at his funeral, I wrote an article called “Open Letter to Burhan Wani” and posted it on Facebook before I went to sleep. Before I went to sleep, I had 530 friends on Facebook. When I woke up, there were 732 likes and friend requests. By noon, I was getting phone calls. By 4 pm, I got a call from Army Headquarters from a serving general in the Indian Army.

“Great article, son”, the general said.

“Thank you, Sir,” I responded. I don’t have much experience of speaking to generals and so I kept it short.

“Keep up the good work, son. All the best.” The general disconnected the call.

I accepted all the FB friend requests that I received. The next day, I got a call from a well-known English news channel, inviting me to a panel discussion on Burhan Wani’s killing. That was my first time on TV. I spoke like I always do – blunt and to the point. I was an infantry company commander in the Indian Army. You don’t get more rough-edged than that. The channel people were perhaps a tad disappointed. They were used to a certain finesse, which I obviously did not bring to the table.

Three days after that show, I was invited to another English news channel, and ushered into a swanky building at Film City, Noida. As I entered the studio, a familiar face rose from his chair to greet me. The same tall guy from Hindu College.

“Welcome to News Hour, Gaurav”, he said.

And so it started for me, the whole crusade of telling the brutal truth without pulling punches…. debate after debate, we did it. Those who would attack India were put in the dock.

Arnab was telling the truth. I, in my very minuscule way, was trying to defend India. I soon realized that it was the same thing.

Time passed and Arnab left Times Now. I did not hear from him for months.

Last week, I received an unexpected call. The voice at the other end of the line said, “Gaurav, do you have a minute? Boss would like to speak with you”.

So, Arnab and I spoke. And then I took a leap of faith.

In our very small, insignificant way, we will again stand up for India. We are unapologetically nationalistic. It is in our DNA. To sugar coat news would be to lie to you. And that is sacrilege. It is blasphemy. It will never be done.

For too long in the mainstream media, faux ideology has substituted fact. Sometimes, it has been money, sometimes special interest. No longer.

In the next few months, Arnab Goswami is bringing a hurricane to your doorstep. And I am coming with that hurricane. News will never be the same again.

Ladies and Gentlemen, long live #TheRepublic

Major Gaurav Arya (Veteran)

#MajorGauravArya #TheNarrowRoad #adgpi #Republic

 

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Author: Major Gaurav Arya (Veteran)

Soldier. Nothing else.

14 thoughts on “THE NARROW ROAD”

  1. Eagerly waiting for the hurricane!
    Though I am no distinguished personality like an Indian Army General..
    But still want to say.. Great article Sir!
    – Regards from a person of the same DNA and unapologetically nationalistic! Jai Hind, Sir!

    P.S A big fan and hope to earn the uniform one day!
    Working real hard. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You were CHARMING in the newshour debate. Absolutely amazing! The newshour debate was always a significant part of my evening and after your entry into the show I became hooked. It felt really refreshing seeing brave people stand up for the truth. You have no idea how pumped (and agitated) i felt after the debate got over. Everyone ridicules Arnab Goswamis way of conducting the discussion. ‘He shouts’ they say. But honestly that’s the only way you can get those wolves to come to terms with their dishonesty.
      Even I sent you a request on FB. And I was shocked that you accepted it. Thankyou ☺
      Do Keep writing! All the best for your new venture. I am super excited for you (and the rest of us).

      Like

  2. Major Gaurav, of the 732 likes and friend requests that you were flooded with that night, mine was one too. In all the years I’ve been on FB, I can count on fingers of one hand, the friend requests I’ve initiated. Honestly, I was tickled pink when you accepted. I wasn’t really expecting it.

    Thank you for being a sane voice- a voice I’m happy and proud to follow. May your tribe multiply. Looking forward to the Republic. I can only bless the years- nay decades- of self-serving, dishonest journalism if this is what has distilled from its corrupt folds.

    Exciting times ahead! Gantantra amar rahe!

    Like

  3. Gaurav,I got personal praise,when giving oral evidence before Pay Commission in 1984-85. This was by chairman as follows.
    “We recieved over 3000 memoranda. Your was the only one to ASK FOR SOME FOR OTHERS TOO”
    Our memorandum for IRMA,had a paragraph on need to augment Defence services.
    Army gives more blood,than the amount of water they recieve, I said !

    Liked by 2 people

  4. We have been force-fed propaganda and lies for far too long sir. Rough , blunt news and unapologetic nationalism is exactly what we need to be revived as a nation .

    Bring on the hurricane MGA, it’s a desperate need . Some long-standing tress with too deep spread corruption needs uprooting.

    Awaiting the thunderstorms .

    Like

  5. Best thing i heard today. Well Arnub also need a helping hand to fight for India intellectually. And with complete confidence on both of you, i know you will show these brainwashed Anti nationals their place. Congrats for this, i know you will enjoy this as this is the passion of yours (fighting for India’s honour). It is must to neutralize the aastin ke saanp first in correlation with the external enemies that show hostility towards India.

    Like

  6. All the best, Sir! Hope to see you with Arnab sir soon. I’m a great fan of yours and really look up to you, being a defence aspirant. Looking forward to the #Republic. Jai Hind!

    Like

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