The Final Journey

While the Haryana burned in reservations protests… And burned down everything in sight, destroying public property and the pride of the nation, there was someone else from Haryana, who responded to the call of the nation.

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The following piece hasn’t been written by me, but I received it today on whatsapp and it moved me to tears. THIS is the naked truth of what the families of martyrs go through. Just a small snippet…

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“Monkey”   Monkey was the name given to him by his dadu, who was also his best friend.

And a four year old little, mischevious monkey he indeed was. Always  jumping from dadu’s one shoulder to  the other,grabbing something and dropping something else.

Little Arjun was excited today. His dadu had told him that they were going to travel in an aeroplane.

“Oh!! The same plane that we wave to daily from the park dadu?” He asked with a joyous voice.

“Yes”, dadu replied as he completed the formalities at the airport.

“Wow!!”  Arjun jumped and looked at his mother, who was standing in the ladies queue for checking into the airport.

Arjun was happy and he wanted to hug his mother, but dadu had told him he couldnt go there.

“Will do it later!!!” He thought to himself and went on to find something new to keep himself busy.

It was his first flight. Arjun was startled to see such a gigantic bird with steel wings. He kept gazing at the aircraft with bewilderment as it came nearer and nearer.

He remembered his friends telling him about the unlimited supply of juices and toffees for kids in aeroplanes.

As he settled down on his seat, flanked by dadu and mummy, Arjun quickly took out his ‘hotwheels’ from his pocket and started playing  with his favourite red car. He carried it everywhere with him.

After a while into the flight, dadu showed arjun the himalyas from the window. Arjun jumped at the sight of the snowcapped peaks.
“That’s where papa stays !! He told me he will take me to his office next time.” said an excited Arjun to his dadu, as the cpassangers looked at the little monkey and smiled.

And as if the pretty looking aunty in the aeroplane was waiting for him to speak, she arrived with a box of candies for Arjun. Arjun was overwhelmed to see the cadbury’s box. Last time he saw such a big box of candies was on Manav’s birthday. Since then, he had been waiting for his own birthday more eagerly.

He pocketed the car, accepted the box with a smile and kept it on his lap. Arjun kept wondering how many toffees would be there in the box. Or would there be any choclates as well!!

Soon a tired Arjun fell asleep in his mother’s lap, still clutching the box in his hand. His mother took the box from his fragile grip and made the child comfortable in her lap.

As the plane touched the Delhi airport, Arjun was again recharged and bubbling.  He jumped on the stairs leading out of the plane, counting them in his mind, as everyone on the airport waited for the plane to arrive.

Arjun, his dadu and mother were ushered into a waiting room, where some aunties and uncles waited for their arrival.

As Arjun settled down on the sofa and sipped on the frooti, the mortal remains of Maj Amit Deswal, Arjun’s father, were lowered from the plane and prepared for a wreath laying ceremony.

Maj Amit Deswal, an officer from the elite Para Commandos Regiment of the Indian Army, had laid his life last evening in a fierce gun battle with militants in the jungles of Manipur.

The major had eliminated two top cadres of the militant group, before bleeding to gun shot wounds, and bidding goodbye to Arjun for ever.

Arjun watched from the tinted window as the ceremony started. His eyes were looking for his papa amongst the uniformed uncles  who saluted the brave soldier and stood in silence  for him. 

Little clue did the monkey have that papa had travelled all along with him to Delhi, and his first air flight was his dad’s final journey.

Rest in Peace braveheart…

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