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Kolkata school commemorates Kargil martyr

Kolkata school commemorates Kargil martyr

Author: Sourav Sanyal
Publication: NDTV.com
Date: August 3, 2006
URL: http://www.ndtv.com/template/template.asp?fromtimeline=true&id=90986&callid=1&template=kargil

Kargil Divas is one official day when we remember the martyrs of 1999.

A Kolkata school decided to step out of the boundaries of official observations to commemorate the ultimate sacrifice of one of its own students of the class of 1991.

Major Shyam Sundar, would have turned 30 on Thursday, was the only one who wasn't there for his birthday commemoration in person.

The soldier, who laid down his life battling militants in dense forests of Poonch on March 5, Shyam, as he is fondly called, was there in every heart gathered at the memorial service organized by his school.

"This boy is a source of inspiration to our students and teachers too. In this growing world of materialism and consumerism, very few students are looking for careers to serve the motherland," said P Soujanya, Principal, Andhra Association School.

"And this story would be motivating our teachers to give examples of this boy and we could always tell our students look guys this is what you should do, serve your motherland," he added.

Pride and sacrifice

For his parents, who came all the way from Chennai, a heart-rending remembrance of their son was Shyam's photograph in uniform.

It was a reminder of his ultimate sacrifice. That perhaps is his parents' only consolation and source of unbridled pride.

"Today my morale has been boosted so much. Morale was already there but today it is doubly boosted because his soul will be resting in peace, because so many people, young and old are blessing him," said P Panchapagesan, Major Shyam's father.

"A mother is a mother. If I had another son, I will send him again," said P Lakshmi, Major Shyam's mother.

General Shanker Roy Chowdhury lent them a helping hand. And chose this occasion to remind the government that it definitely needs to do more for families of martyrs.

"These are privileged people. The government must deal with them on that basis. The people of India remember their heroes, they know them, they have a place in their hearts for them, the government must do more," said General Shanker Roy Chowdhury, former Chief of Army Staff.

August 2nd, 2006. The Andhra Association School in Kolkata has found its new hero.

Till now, only two photographs - that of Sarvapalli Radhakrishnan and Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru - adorned the walls of the headmistress' chamber in the school.

But today Major P Sundar joined their ranks. All in the hope that others would follow in his footsteps and do the nation proud.

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