The Mighty Life of Lt Gen “Tiny” Dhillon

I finished reading Lt Gen Tiny Dhillon’s book “Kitne Ghazi Aaye, Kitne Ghazi Gaye” a couple of days back. For someone like me whose only regret in life is not being a part of the Indian Army the book brings that life alive. I literally could “see” some of the training that Tiny Sir underwent at NDA and several operations that he led as though I was a part of them.

The first time that we saw Lt Gen Dhillon on TV was probably during 2019 or so when he addressed several press conferences as 15 Chinar Corps Commander. There is nothing tiny about Dhillon Sir. I remember telling Amma that Bheem (one of the Pandava brothers) must have a little taller and a little more well built than Tiny Sir.

Just seeing him standing in front of them, the enemy would be demoralised. He doesn’t have to do anything. Just his presence. And the opposite impact would be on his soldiers, they would be super motivated having him lead them.

For some strange reason, right through the book I was remembering Vijayalaya Chola. Just like he pulled victory from the jaws of defeat, Lt Gen Dhillon manages to turn every operation into a success. He truly is the son of “Shermar Maa” !! His mother fought against a wild tiger and managed to save his father, but lost her life due to a wrong medicine. 🙁

The Price an Army Man Pays ….

Some of the following excerpts show the steep price that our soldiers pay to guarantee us the freedom and peace.

“… The regret that I could not be by my wife’s side during both her pregnancies and deliveries will always remain with me. This may sound like the sad incantation of a romantic husband or a devoted father, but I will have to live with the hard truth for my entire life that I was not present at the time of birth of both my children.”

Tiny Sir relates two incidents where news of his purported “death” is seen by his wife on TV channels and the trauma she goes through till he manages to call and speak to her. It’s unthinkable for many civilians and it’s almost impossible to be in that situation.

“….Having lost all communication with us for the last thirty six hours, he was intensely worried about our team and asked me to clearly specify our location so that he could send food supplies. My immediate response was, ‘Sir, rations can come later, what is critical at this point is that the wife of a jawan who is accompanying me on this operation was critical and admitted to a hospital at his native place. So, can you please check about her condition and convey “all ok” and also please convey to her that her husband is all right?’ On a personal note I said,’My wife’s birthday is approaching and can you please call on the STD line and wish her from my side?'”

Tiny Sir – in Praise of Rashtriya Rifles

Tiny Sir speaks very highly of the Rashtriya Rifles. Please read the following excerpt to understand how this organisation is probably the world’s best counter-terrorism force.

“.. His emulatory ‘fire in the belly’ commitment to fulfilling the task at hand and the motivation with which he goes about achieving this objective literally makes an RR soldier one of the most professional, meanest ‘man machines’ designed to serve the motherland. I daresay that even the most dreaded terrorists baulk at the name of RR and the epithet, ‘RR – sirf naan hi kaafi hai’ has not been earned without reason.”

The book has several pages dedicated to Tiny Sir’s role as a leader in the Indian Army. The word “welfare” takes on a very different meaning in the armed forces. The family of a soldier who makes the supreme sacrifice automatically becomes the responsibility of his unit’s commander. There are many instances narrated by Tiny Sir about how he carried out “welfare” measures for the men and their families of his unit.

Lt Gen Dhillon writes extensively about Kashmir and his time there. From the temples, mosques and the beauty of Kashmir to the dastardly attack on the CRPF convoy at Pulwama and its aftermath and about the abrogation of article 370 and 35 A. He writes about how the entire operation was carried out without incident because of the detailed planning done. Reading those chapters shows how the Govt of India functions as well ….

Lt Gen Tiny Dhillon
Lt Gen Tiny Dhillon
Lt Gen Tiny Dhillon
Donning his combat uniform for the last time – Pic taken from Twitter

I follow Tiny Sir on Twitter and I certainly hope that some day, Krishnan and I will get the opportunity to get a pic clicked with him. I also hope to invite him and ma’am home for a South Indian meal as a way of saying thanks for his service to the nation and being a role model for so many youngsters.

Jai Hind Sir.

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