Tag Archive for 'OLQ'

Nostalgia – 15th June 1966 – An Officer and a Gentleman.

Today – the 15th of June 2011 is the 45th anniversary of my commissioning in the Indian Army . Some of my course mates from the 21st Technical Course always call and greet each other on this day .

Looking back , many images come up in my mind . The first day at IMA [ Indian Military Academy ]Dehra Dun when we were inducted to the gentlemen cadet [ GC} routine with a good doze of ragging , the rigors of training on field craft on the bed of the Tons river and Siwalik hills , the tough physical training regimen followed by a sweating drill practice guided by Subedar Major Harnam Singh [ He was the first to salute us after we passed out !!] , the front rolls and restriction parade , the discomfort in wearing a full suit in summer while going out to the city and above all the battle inoculation exercise simulating war noise and gun fire ! . The packaging was so good and the food was a great draw !! .

I remember Major Bhawani Singh , MK  , [ later Brigadier and the Maharaja of Jaipur ] the academy adjutant on horse back , a formidable icon of influence to all the cadets . He died recently in his eighties . Our squad instructor Major Shashikant who was a tough disciplinarian and our PT Instructor Nirmal singh who helped me pass the vertical rope and horizontal bar tests .

The passing out parade on 15th June 1966 from the steps of the famous Chetwode  Hall to the tune of ” Auld Lang Syne ” was the beginning of my 31 years of Army Career which I cannot help looking back with a lot of Nostalgia on this day !

The motto of IMA was a message to all the passing out cadets which I reproduce below –

” The safety , honour and welfare of your country comes first , always and every time.

The honour , welfare and comfort of the men you command come next.

Your own ease , comfort and safety come  last , always and every time. ”

While the Officer Like Qualities [ we called it OLQ while in IMA]  we  learned while on training helped us in our Army Career , it continued to guide me in my corporate life after retirement and in my social life all the time .

Villagers – An Embarrassing moment

During our basic technical  training at Secunderabad  after commissioning in the Army in 1966 , we went to Bangalore on a study tour . Three of us  – young subalterns  freshly minted from the Indian Military Academy at Dehra Dun  ,  proud of our status  and displaying OLQ [Officer like Qualities ]  were strolling  on the  MG Road in the Cantonment in the evening . At a cross road near the famous Koshy’s  ,  we saw the RED light but seeing no vehicular traffic , decided to cross the road . It was almost dark and we did not see a traffic constable standing at a distance from the traffic light . Seeing us crossing the road , he whistled and called us to his post .

As is generally the practice , we thought he will ask us for money . But we were in for a rude shock !! . He merely looked us all over including the well groomed hair , neat dress and blazer etc and said with utter contempt  ‘  VILLAGERS – GO AWAY !!  ‘   –  Imagine our discomfort  and the loss of face suffered  with a greatly deflated EGO .