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Honoring the Veteran Soldier: a True Incident

November 19, 2011  by: Madan G Singh  Points: 12   Category: Others    Views: 510

A veteran soldier who has served the country needs honor and respect


Recently I went to a small South Indian restaurent in deep south. I was on my way from Bangalore to Chennai by car. I had stopped at a roadside cafe or as in the north we say a Dhaba. As I ordered a dosa and sat down to eat a man limped in with a walking stick. It was obvious he had a injured leg which was a permanent isability. He had a regal bearing and his gait was steady and I realized perhaps this man at some stage had worn the uniform.

The man sat in a corner and quietly order his dosa and ate it slowly. He never spoke to anyone or looked at anyone either as he sat in his corner. Afer some time I heard him ask for the bill. That is the the time a small boy ventured up to the man and asked him " Sir how did you injure your leg'. That is the first time the man smiled as he replied so softly, yet all present heard it " son, I lost it in the battle at Jaffna".

The waiter and the owner also heard it and the hotel owner came up and told the man " Sir,there is no bill for you. You gave your leg for the country allow us at least to give a free meal".

" This " he went on to add "is not charity, but a duty, Please let me do my duty as per the Gita"

The man finished his meal. there was a regal gait as he walked to the manager at the counter'Thank you my friend, for the offer, but I will pay". He paid and walked off. This man for me was the real hero. I was glad he had conducted himself with dignity as befittinga soldier and gladder still that in a remote corner of Tamil Nadu people understood the value of a soldier, a veteran who had served the nation. i wondered who this man was and which regiment he had served.I wanted to talk to him, but ere I came out the man had gone. I scanned the horizon and could see no one. I drove away with regret.


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