Wake Up Generals 3

Reference Wake Up Generals 2.Brig Ajit Nair has responded to Col Ajay Shukla’s response to his rebuttal of his(Col Shukla) article in the Business Standard.The same is reproduced below.

I am not commenting on the exchange as yet.I will write a detailed Blog on the
State of The Officer Corps which will cover the issue holistically.

Dear Ajai,

Thank you for the courtesy of a well-thought out and much more logical reply than your sensationalistic article.

At the outset, let me clarify – I have nothing against you personally. I thought you were a very fine TV journalist/anchor/news reader. You were articulate and balanced, but supportive of the Army, without making it overtly obvious – thereby retaining your credibility. But I maintain my distaste of the article in question. It did not convey the feelings of a concerned Veteran trying to push reform in what he thinks is a corrupt, nepotistic, intellectually deprived and virtually dysfunctional Army – “crumbling edifice”, you called it. That was just sensational journalism at its best. Which is what I seriously objected to. There is a deep gulf between constructive criticism and destructive disparagement.

“The Indian Army fish is rotting from the head.” The very first sentence said it all. A denunciation of what I still consider a very fine Army, trying to come to grips with the ills bestowed upon it by a materialistic society consumed with power and money, and upward mobility. Every problem that you mention, is present in our Army in varying degrees, not one is progressing to a destructive endplay. Grains of truth in a beach of vituperation. It’s not as if the Army doesn’t know of its failings, it’s just trying deal with them, without creating too much internal turbulence. Let’s give the Generals a chance without too much adverse and thoughtless criticism, especially in public. I agree with you – reform from within and from the top is the only option.

I’m forwarding your letter and this reply to all the original addressees, (in BCC), as you’ve asked me to. This exchange of ideas is also on the Old Lawrencians Forum – I’m not sending this to them (I didn’t put it there in the first place – someone else did) – too many disinterested readers, and besides, I don’t want it to become a Sanawar vs Lovedale battle – which it isn’t. My batch of 1969 had eight of us joining the Army (of 64 students). In my three years in the SSB – only one Lawrencian (from either School) appeared, and he was the Bandmasters son from Lovedale (and I failed him – regrettably). I think that’s endemic of the Army’s failure – not attracting adequate talent from the right quarters; and it bodes ill for our future. Which is why, running down the Army any further could well be extremely counter-productive.

I shall reply to your mail in detail – point by point, since I agree in some areas, but disagree in many others, most of all in the method you are adopting, to force the internal change you want. But I’m sure that you are not going to achieve that aim, by using irrelevant issues and sarcastic and facetious language in public, to ridicule the Army. And using exaggeration and sweeping generalizations as tools. These are the causes of my angst.

The Army is nowhere near fulfilling the dire prophesies of its naysayers.

With Regards

Ajit

P.S. Gen HS Panag wrote, disagreeing with both of us. Check out his blog at https://rwac48.wordpress.com/2012/11/16/15/.

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