Days in the Army

From the albums

Days in the Army

This photograph was taken sometime in December 1977 when I was doing Medical Officers Basic Course (MOBC – 55) at Lucknow.

We were all young doctors who joined Army as captains and were posted for training at Lucknow. Most of us from Karnataka became very good friends and enjoyed our tough military training, weapon training etc, in temperature hovering around six-degree centigrade.

We were given bicycles on hire on which we used to go to classes, training grounds and parades. If we are free we used to go into the city for morning shows too!
I remember going about 20 km and visiting Kukrel Crocodile Park where different species of crocodiles are reared and supplied to different zoos.

However, there was strong affinity to Bangalore as I used to come home during holidays. Sometimes, our leaves used to get cancelled the next day and we would have to return to the camp. Once I came to attend my sister’s marriage just before the ‘mahurtham’ time. I travelled by air for the first time and seeing me like that caused immense joy for everyone. I left for the airport right after the ceremony as I had to report for duty the next day. Even my marriage, which happened during my army service time, was a stressful one. My leave had not been sanctioned till the day before I was to travel.

My wife and her parents had to come from Jamnagar where they were living and I was posted to Jalandhar. The wedding took place in Bangalore though. As there was hardly any time to prepare, all the arrangements were done in a hurry - most of the work was shared by friends and relatives. Soon after the marriage, I had to go back alone to my unit as it was going for war exercises and the permission to bring my wife along with me was withdrawn at the last minute. It became a huge task to explain and convince everyone.

There were several such experiences which trained me and my wife to face life in a calmer way. We still cherish our Army life.

Looking back after so many decades we have nothing but gratitude and appreciation for the Army.

As a result of the work of several military teams, we were able to prevent the outbreak of widespread infections, diseases and give prompt treatment to the injured and the ill.

There were widespread appreciations for the job well done which brought satisfaction to all the teams which were code-named ‘Operation Doosara Toofan’.

Now I am retired but still active in the profession, thanks to the experience, confidence and knowledge my Army service has given me.

(The author can be contacted at drdwarakanath@rediffmail.com)

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