17 years have passed, and 17 Kumaon is still my parachute. I was desperately looking for my army photos. Then it struck me….why not ask the Unit for help? Within 8 hours, I got these gems from 1995-96, with the promise of more to follow. The Unit always comes through.

These photos triggered memories.

These are the men who made me what I am. They trained me. Yes, they were very tough taskmasters. After all, their brief was simple “Defend India, whatever the cost”. They could not have been gentle.

I remember the nights of sheer exhaustion, running with sand packs in the burning desert, endless map reading classes, weapons training, radio telephony, first aid…it went on an on.

Many a time I fell down and sometimes my knees just gave way. But they were relentless. No mercy. “You cannot be soft and defend India”, they said.

My body would scream in agony. They told me that toughness is in the mind…learn to ignore pain, cold, heat and hunger. You are a soldier, they said.

And then there were the Kumaoni troops, men of the mountains. Strong, brave, honourable and tough. They were men of character. My seniors told me that to lead them you had to be worthy. If you were worthy, a Kumaoni would follow you to the very gates of hell. And if it was a matter of “Izzat” he would even fight the gods. The Kumaonis had no fear of death. They proved that in Kashmir.

I am no longer in the Unit. But I am still a part of it. My seniors still guide me. They are still unsparing. 17 summers have passed, but in many ways I am still held to account if I go wrong.

After all these years, and for all of us, the center of gravity remains what it was, and what it will always be…Paltan ki Izzat.

The Unit is not just an organisational group, a mathematical collection of men. It is a breathing entity. With our blood and sweat we nurture the unit. And the unit nurtures us.

Yes, there is an invisible umbilical cord that binds us to the Unit. One day, we will all die. But the Unit will live.

The Unit is immortal.

Jai Ram Sarv Shaktiman. Kalika Mata Ki Jai.

Major Gaurav Arya (Veteran)
#IndianArmy #adgpi #theunit


Author: Major Gaurav Arya (Veteran)

Soldier. That’s all.

8 thoughts on “THE UNIT”

  1. My unit = my family. They’re tough taskmasters too! Thanks to them, I’ve discovered a wealth of patience within, which I never knew existed! Lol!

    It is an interesting experience to apply your learning with the army to regular civilian life Major. The way we feel about our immediate few, soldiers feel about a whole country! Respect!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Major gaurav arya sir
    I am kumaoni and feel proud after going through your blog.
    Since childhood i want to serve army but due to some medical issues I couldn’t. But whenever my country needs me I will be there no matter what happens next to me.
    Thank you so much sit

    Liked by 1 person

  3. An amazing article!! As I’m ex sailor so it is a quite easily touching one. Your Regimental spirit is commendable!! God bless you Major!!!


  4. MGA, that’s a beautiful post, impeccably written in your class A style. The thoughts,nostalgia and emotion in your words are touchable. You have a way with words that’s beyond amazing!! MGA, reading this I so wish you would write an extension to The Wolf Pack, or something similar, would you? Thank You.


  5. It is only because of such brave soldiers that we all are able to sleep peacefully.. Salute to Indian Army! you deserve a lot more for shielding us and the courage you show by directly facing the enemies, knowing that it is a risk for your life!! Hatsoff.. Jai Hind Major.. Please keep posting..It is a great honour to be able to know your thoughts and experiences.


  6. Thank you for such an amazing article, Sir!
    The Defence forces of our country.. The regiments.. The units.. They give a whole new definition to the word Family! ..
    Not all family is related by blood but some are related with honor…with service..and respect!
    Proud to have soldiers like you in our country!

    “For time may come and go.. But my soldiers.. My brothers.. They go on forever.”

    Jai Ram Sarv Shaktiman Kalika Mata Ki Jai !!
    Jai Hind!

    Your Admirer,
    Sushim R Dutta


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s