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14 Books About the Indian Armed Forces that Demand Your Attention!

Step into the world of heroism and sacrifice of the Indian Armed forces. From the untold stories of soldiers in the 1971 war to the daring anti-terror operations, these tales capture the courage of Indian forces. Join us in honoring the spirit of our brave defenders this Army Day.

Nowhere Man
Nowhere Man || Shivalik Bakshi

Capt. Kamal Bakshi fought in the 1971 Indo-Pak War and went missing after the Battle of Chhamb–the bloodiest battle of 1971. Although no one from his battalion had seen him get killed, no one had been able to locate his body. And so, the military declared him ‘Missing, Believed Killed’–the ambiguous status assigned to soldiers when their death cannot be confirmed.
However, six years after the war, the Indian government changed its mind. The Ministry of External Affairs announced in Parliament that Indian intelligence agencies have reason to believe that Pakistan had not been truthful when it handed over the list of Indian POWs in its custody. It went on to state the names of at least forty Indian soldiers still believed to be in Pakistani custody and one of the names was Kamal Bakshi’s.
This book has been written by his nephew Shivalik Bakshi. It is his story, recreated from his letters, diaries, recollections of those who crossed paths with him and published accounts of the Battle of Chhamb.

 

Beyond Fear
Beyond Fear || Ian Cardozo

The stories featured in Major General Ian Cardozo’s book Beyond Fear, inform the reader that fear is not exceptional. It is common to all human beings. The question is: Do we face fear or run away from it? Through these thirteen stories, he reveals to the reader how military personnel conquer fear. He calls it ‘biting the bullet’.

 

India's Most Fearless 3
India’s Most Fearless 3 || Shiv Aroor, Rahul Singh

India’s Most Fearless 3 features ten true stories of extraordinary courage and fearlessness, providing glimpses of the heroism Indian soldiers have displayed in unthinkably hostile conditions and under grave provocation.

 

Kitne Ghazi Aaye, Kitne Ghazi Gaye
Kitne Ghazi Aaye, Kitne Ghazi Gaye || Lt Gen KJS ‘Tiny’ Dhillon

Anecdotal, candid and evocative, Kitne Ghazi Aaye, Kitne Ghazi Gaye brings to light the true stories from Lt Gen. K.J.S ‘Tiny’ Dhillon (Retd)’s life. It focuses on the personal, professional and, most importantly, family life of a soldier in the Army, and will not only provide an insight into the trials and tribulations he faced but will also inspire a wide spectrum of readers, especially young defence aspirants.

 

India's Most Fearless
India’s Most Fearless || Shiv Aroor and Rahul Singh

The men who hunted down terrorists in a magical
Kashmir forest where day turned to night. The Army major who led the legendary September 2016 surgical strikes on terror launch pads across the LoC. A Navy officer who sailed into a treacherous port to rescue hundreds from an exploding war. A bleeding Air Force pilot who found himself flying a jet that had become a screaming fireball. An e xclusive first-hand account of the 2020 Galwan clash.

 

Naam Namak Nishan
Naam Namak Nishan The Ultimate Indian Armed Forces Quiz Book

Do you know why the Indian Navy counts ‘One, Two, Six’ instead of ‘One, Two, Three’ while doing group tasks?
Or that the Intelligence Bureau was set up in response to an assassination?
Or that a Frenchman who had served three nations before turning thirty eventually rose to become the most powerful general of the Marathas?
Or that an army man gave his name to the highest mountain without ever having set foot on it?

Find out the answers to these and more as a team of quizzer-doctors from the Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC) Pune takes you on a journey across 250 questions, exploring trivia that connects the Indian Armed Forces to topics ranging from mythology, history and art to geography, fashion and sport.

 

India's Most Fearless 2
India’s Most Fearless 2 || Shiv Aroor, Rahul Singh

Untold accounts of the biggest recent anti-terror operations

First-hand reports of the most riveting anti-terror encounters in the wake of the 2016 surgical strikes, the men who hunted terrorists in a magical Kashmir forest where day turns to night, a pair of young Navy men who gave their all to save their entire submarine crew, the Air Force commando who wouldn’t sleep until he had avenged his buddies, the tax babu who found his soul in a terrifying Special Forces assault on Pakistani terrorists, and many more.

 

Crime, Grime and Gumption
Crime, Grime and Gumption || O.P. Singh

From the dusty plains of Gaya, Bihar, to the swampy and terror-infested wetlands of Lakhimpur Kheri, Uttar Pradesh, Crime, Grime and Gumption is an honest and hard-hitting account of law enforcement and governance in the Hindi belt of India. As the ‘policewallah’ gives you a peek into the world of the khaki in this memoir, you will be left thirsting for more.

 

Cyber Encounter

Cyber Encounters delves deep into this nebulous cyberspace, to bring twelve fascinating accounts of cybercrime. Ashok Kumar, DGP, Uttarakhand Police and a veteran in the systematic fight against cybercrime in the state, and OP Manocha, an ex-DRDO scientist, unfold a specific type of cybercrime in each tale, based on a true story. Packed with information on the crime, its investigation and the apprehending of the criminals, this illuminating insider account is a must-read.

A General Reminisces
A General Reminisces || Satish Dua

The son of a modest famer, Nazir tried his hand at carpet weaving, a traditional Kashmiri craft, as a young boy. Teenagers those days heard strident voices, fiery speeches, and more than occasional gunfire. Some were scared, some swayed. Nazir strayed on the wrong side as a teenager, starting with running errands for terrorist groups to more. Fortunately for him, Ikhwan, a rehabilitation programme that allowed young Kashmiri men to convert from militancy and work with the Indian Army, was started just then.

 

The Brave: Param Vir Chakra Stories
The Brave: Param Vir Chakra Stories || Rachna Bisht Rawat

21 riveting stories from the battlefield about how India’s highest military honour was won
The Brave takes you to the hearts and minds of India’s bravest soldiers, all of whom won the Param Vir Chakra, India’s greatest military honour. With access to the Army, families and comrades-in-arms of the soldiers, Rachna Bisht Rawat paints the most vivid portrait of these men and their extraordinary deeds.

 

Kargil
Kargil || Rachna Bisht Rawat

Kargil takes you into the treacherous mountains where some of Indian Army’s bloodiest battles were fought. Interviewing war survivors and martyrs’ families, Rachna Bisht Rawat tells stories of extraordinary human courage, of not just men in uniform but also those who loved them the most. With its gritty stories of incomparable bravery, Kargil is a tribute to the 527 young braves who gave up their lives for us-and the many who were ready to do it too.

 

Shoot. Dive. Fly
Shoot. Dive. Fly || Rachana Bisht Rawat

The book aims to introduce teenagers to the armed forces, unveiling both the perils-the rigours and the challenges-and the perks-the thrill and the adventure-of a career in uniform. Ballroom dancing, flying fighter planes, detonating bombs, skinning and eating snakes in times of dire need and everything else in between-there’s nothing our officers can’t do!

 

India's Secret War
India’s Secret War || Ushinor Majumdar

With access to classified records and through exhaustive interviews with surviving veterans, award-winning investigative reporter Ushinor Majumdar has crafted this first comprehensive historical account of the BSF’s role in the Bangladesh liberation war, which changed the course of South Asian history.

Beyond Fear: Jai Singh’s Torch of Honour Lights the Way

Major General Ian Cardozo in his book Beyond Fear, recounts thirteen stories that inform the reader that fear is not exceptional. It is common to all human beings and how military personnel overcome it. One such story unfolds the life of Naik (Corporal) Jai Singh from the 16th Light Cavalry, shedding light on the futility of war and the enduring impact it leaves on families and what they can do to achieve positive outcomes from the tragedies that war can cause.

Read this exclusive excerpt from Beyond Fear to know more about Jai Singh and the promise that was made to him.

Beyond Fear
Beyond Fear || Ian Cardozo

***

‘Once upon a time,’ he began, ‘my grandfather was fighting in Burma during World War II. He had become ery close friends with another soldier named Jai Singh. Both were part of a medium machine gun detachment of their battalion that was supporting an infantry brigade, which was struggling to beat back the Japanese at the Battle of Kohima.’ The soldier was referring to a battle that would eventually turn the tide in the battle for Burma.

 

The Japanese had reached Kohima, which was a gateway to India from the north-east and is today the capital of Nagaland. A historic battle was fought there, with objectives captured, lost, recaptured and lost, and won again. This battle had important possible outcomes.
If the Japanese won, India would be open to the Japanese Army. If the Allies won, it would mean a hard slog back into Burma to wrest it back from the Japanese and then on to Malaya, Singapore, Siam (now Thailand) and the Dutch East Indies.

 

The soldier continued with the story as narrated to him by his grandfather, whose name was Mohan Chander.

 

‘It was during one of these battles that Grandfather’s friend Jai Singh got wounded. A piece of shrapnel from a mortar bomb ripped open his abdomen during one of the Japanese counter-attacks. Two members of the detachment carried Jai Singh away. My grandfather had to carry on with beating back the counter-attack, manning the machine gun on his own. After the attack had petered out, he went looking for Jai Singh and found him lying in the open. He was beyond help. There was nothing that my grandfather could do except apply a first-field dressing on Jai Singh’s abdomen to keep the contents inside.

 

‘Grandfather lifted Jai Singh into his arms and took him to the shade of a tree. Jai Singh opened his eyes and said, “I knew you would come.” He had lost a lot of blood and had become very weak. After a long silence, he told Grandfather that just a few days earlier, he had received mail from home. The letter had been written two months earlier. His wife could not write, and the letter had been penned by the local schoolteacher so nothing personal could be conveyed. She had, however, managed to convey to her husband that she prayed daily at the temple for his safe return.

 

‘Jai Singh smiled ruefully and said that could no longer happen. He would never return. My grandfather tried to assure him that professional medical help was on the way and he would soon be well again.

 

‘Jai Singh looked at my grandfather and said, “We both know that I will not survive. It will be good if you remain with me until the end. I don’t want to go away alone.”

 

‘After a while, he said, “It will be nice if you could visit my wife after this war is over and tell her that my last thoughts were of her. Tell her that I am sorry it had to end this way, but there was nothing I could do about it. Please do what you can for her. Please see that she gets her family pension.” He was silent for a while, and Grandfather thought he was about to lose him, but Jai Singh had only closed his eyes because he was in great pain.

 

‘After a while, he continued, “It would have been nice if we had a son. He would have looked after my wife. Now that I will be gone, there will be no one to take care of her and to continue my bloodline. With me, my name will die.” He sighed and closed his eyes once again.

 

‘My grandfather kept quiet for some time and then said, “Jai, I would like to assure you that your wife will be cared for as though she is part of my own family. If my wife and I have a son, we will name him Jai Singh. If we have a daughter, we will call her Jaya.”

 

Jai Singh smiled. He was getting weaker by the moment. “Thank you,” he whispered. A little while later, he was gone. Jai Singh had joined his forefathers and his God. For him, the war was over, but he had not been able to live to tell the tale. Grandfather decided to sit with Jai Singh’s body till the stretcher-bearers arrived.

***

Get your copy of Beyond Fear by Ian Cardozo wherever books are sold.

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