I hope you have been able to observe the life in the Army closely and would now want to join it to serve the nation, Prof Talat Ahmad, Vice Chancellor, Jamia Millia Islamia told a group of 28 students who recently went on a ten-day tour across the State of Jammu and Kashmir.
The tour that was organised and hosted by the Indian Army in collaboration with Jamia comprised of 14 boys and girls each from different under graduate courses of the university. They visited the valley from April 4.
Major Mahendra Singh of 19 Artery Brigade, who accompanied the students, said it was wonderfully disciplined and enthusiastic group. “Being ambassadors of Jamia we wanted them to interact with the Army, NGos and the awaam of Kashmir. We got an overwhelming response from all of them.”
The tour was conceptualised by the Chief of Army Staff as also those of the Navy and the Air force in order to provide a platform to students to witness the work of the Indian Army and its role in peace and development in J&K.
The idea seems to have borne results as some of the students who participated in the tour have already made up their mind to compete for the prestigious exams that will allow them to be a part of the Indian forces.
The students met Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir Mehbooba Mufti at her residence on April 9. They got an opportunity to interact with Chief of Staff Northern Command, GOC 15 Corps and GOC 19 Division among others.
Prof Ahmad said Jamia has earlier signed MoUs with the Army and the other forces, which allow the personnel from these services to pursue various courses from the university. The tour is yet another chapter that adds to JMI’s association with the forces that serve the country.
A. P. Siddiqui (IPS), Registrar, JMI said it was because of the proactive approach of the Army and the willingness of the Vice Chancellor that the tour was made possible. He added that the tour accorded the students with a rare opportunity to witness the reality of J&K and the good work done by the Army in the state.
The students were able to witness the LoC and stayed at the civil army camp throughout their tour and spent one night in houseboats in the famous Dal Lake as a guest of the Chief Minister.
Besides, the students got a taste of the social and cultural life of Kashmir as they visited the famous Nishat gardens, the Hazrat Bal shrine, skied in Gulmarg and enjoyed shikara rides in the Dal Lake.
Prof. Tasneem Meenai, Dean of Students Welfare, who accompanied the group, said that the tour has provided the students with unusual exposure which will last them in good stead for the rest of their lives.