|Leh Palace 1964|
|Chushul village headman with our CP staff|
The following Officers of Indo Tibetan border force did yeoman service to the nation unsung, un noticed in very difficult terrain without any security protection against the Chinese. It is just their guts and inner strength as well the unbroken Intelligence Bureaus esperi-de-corps which sustained them. For us ITBF personnel Shri BN.Mullick's dictum that "" Intelligence officers have no borders""was holy Manthra.
Mr.Charan singh, DYSp of Punjab police on deputation to IB was the one who discovered first the Chinese Aksai chin road connecting Tibet with Sinkiang and brought some Chinese mile stones on his Pony's back. He became little more adventurous and was taken Prisoner along with some ITBF constables near Hot springs post and was tortured by the Chinese which left him partially paralyzed in one leg. This day is observed as Police Memorial day on 21st October.
Mr.N.S Bhatti who was instrumental in re establishing the Indian ITBF posts 7 main posts supported by another 10 or so subposts which were withdrawn during 1962. Some posts like Track junction, Murgo,DBO were established with just 4 or 5 personnel with signal officer carrying those bulky SAFI sets made by BHEL. But the posts were established by July 1963 with some casualties due to weather. Ladhaki sepoys of ITBF could easily face the weather but then others from plains have to face the weather.Track junction which was at 17,800 feet was the worst where one has to melt ice throughout the year to drink.
Mr.Parminder Singh who was in charge of Koyul post impressed Mr.BN Mullick so much with his adventurism like getting a Chinese pony to our side that he promoted the entire Koyul post by one rank. What was tricky was that the constable cook got promoted as Havildar and created funny situation amongst other constables.But this one single action by Mr. Mullick was talked about amongst every one of ITBF personnel and acted as a great incentive to show similar adventurism. May be this is what made us to see the inside of Khurnak fort or Rezang Lungpa posts of the Chinese which I donot think is possible now.
Samuel Santhanam who climbed most of the OPs and took snaps.Mr.Lakshmi narayanan,Sd Sehgal, guptha, GK Uphadyaya, Upendra. AKBakshi,CN parthasarathy, KS Rawat,Ponnuswamy,Chatterjee, are some of the names which come to my mind.There were constables like Abdul Razzak,Mathai who within two months of posting could speak Tibetan fluently though from Kerala on deputation to ITBF from CRPF. Grass cutter Norphel who kept the Ponies fit for recce. I recovered 8 bodies in sleeping bags from inside a bunker at Rezang La and also plenty of empty rounds fired from a LMG nest.The visit of Mrs.Narasimhan along with her husband was a great Morale booster for the entire checkposts she visited as well as the Army units which were posted alongside us.I have already posted in 2009 how the Chinese killed three of my constables in cold blood at Dumchele.The link is below. http://captainjohann.blogspot.in/2009/09/indiachina-war-1962lessons-for-2009.html.
One cannot forget the wild life of Ladakh especially the Ibex, Mountain goat, wild Horses, Rabbits, and I was fortunate to see the rare legendary Golden Fox in all its majesty only once.The modern digital cameras were not there at that time and I had the Russian Lubitel camera but not enough 120 films which could be processed.easily or purchased. The giant 5 ton Shakthiman trucks crossing over frozen Indus river is a sight to see. The Ink blue Pangong lake is another sight to behold.There were some innovation too with Chinese dollar serving as yeast for setting curd.Many a Hotspring like at chumathang, Hotsprings ,Demochok etc.were so invigorating to take bath.
The Indian media was crying hoarse about Chinese aggression which shows their complete ignorance or vested interest to provoke some skirmish between the two nations so that American Arms export lobby is benefited.Why the Chinese came inside 19 KMs and not 21 KMs? For Indian media there is no interest to study the Colombo proposals( given below in full), or the 1993 or 1996 pacts between the two nations and what they say. They even do not know the difference between Chinese army or its border guards who are the ones who pitched the tent. They do not even know the difference between ITBP, the role of Army in peace and war. They never interviewed any officer from the the Ministry of Home or ITBP while the retired Generals and colonels were mouthing their valour and patriotism.Why the Chinese came at this time and why did they withdraw?What is the significance of Chinese Prime Minister's coming visit?These require deep study.Chinese respect strength and Self reliance and that is what India should strive to achieve.
|The Three Musketeers|
|Dungti check post crew over frozen Indus|
|Chushul post crew constables Razaak,Mathai with self|
|Kumaon Memorial for Maj Shaitan singh and his company|
|captain Johann with Guptha|
|captainjohann over Chushul runway|
|captainjohann with constables Phendo,dorje,shivdayal,norphel|
|Captainjohann with Ladakhi belles|
|Self over pony at gurung hill|
|At an abondones Indian army bunker at Rezang la with thurbine|
How Can A Man Die Better?
Than Facing Fearful Odds,
For The Ashes Of His Fathers,
And Temples Of His Gods.”
AVM Pinto's wreath was the last one he laid
before he dies in an air crash.Captain johann
|Dungti post across Indus|
|Leh Bazaar 1964|
|With my prized 303|
|Monitoring Sapangur gap Chinese post from Gurung Hill|