Wednesday, October 26, 2005

Air warriors walk down memory lane

AFA West Zone celebrated 25 years. and it felicitated three of its Octogeneraian members. I have had the pleasure of interviewing two of the three - Air Chief Marshal Moolgavkar and Air Marshal YV Malse.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Satellite images create stir in govt -

I made national TV on Sunday, 23rd October 2005. The program was on Google Earth and its threat potential to National Security. I gave a couple of sound bites to the story and was featured in the 9.00pm "India This Week" News story. The transcripts of my interview are on the links above

Video URL :

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

HAL Jaguar DARIN II Specifications

This is a photo of a magazine photo of a placard (figure that out!) displayed by HAL on its Jaguar Darin II Program.

Considerable Avionics upgrade to the Darin II since the first Jag produced in the 70s! Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Monday, October 17, 2005

Churchill Tank in Secunderabad

This is the first ever Churchill I have ever seen, and this one is on display at the EME Center in Secunderabad. Its an incredible piece of History, and very few people know that the Indian Army operated these just after Independence.

More of the tanks and relics from Hyderabad can be visited at Posted by Picasa

Sunday, October 16, 2005

BR Meet Photo : Webmasters busy at work!

This is a photograph of our local "Bharat-Rakshak" Meet in Hyderabad. Seen left to right are the "Front Page Designer", "The CD Shop wallah", "The Administrator" and "The Whisky taster" respectively. The "Juice Drinking Expert" arrived late and that forms the subject of a completely another photo.

The place is Outswinger Pub at Hotel Basera in Secunderabad. After downing three beers and three whiskies in total, we went on to eat some excellent Hyderabadi Biryani from Paradise Hotel.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Dang, hes good!

 Posted by Picasa

A reprint of an earlier book

Memorable War Stories is a reprint of an earlier book called "In the footprints of legends" by Gp Capt Ranbir Singh. Bought out by Ocean books , the book is quite low cost and enjoyable reading. Posted by Picasa

Eighteenth Century Hyderabad: Anatomy of an Old Map

The above PDF document is a chapter from some architecture related book. The Author S P Shorey writes in detail of an old map of Hyderabad that was discovered in the early 20th century. A fascinating study of the map follows, supported by actuall survey maps from the early 1920s. The map snippets showing old city from about a 100 years back and is just lovely for someone like me who likes Maps .

More links to old maps of Hyderabad

A Quranic Paradise in Arch Metaphors

Thursday, October 06, 2005

The Medals of IO-52968 Jemdr M L Chakravarthy IEME

Among the various fringe hobbies I have is collecting Medals. I am basically a type collector - being happy with 'one of each'. However in the medal collecting world, only 'groups' are valued. I.e. a group of medals belonging to a single reciepent. This is my first ever group. It is also the group that I reunited, otherwise today the five medals shown would have been with five different people.

Just who exactly is this Jemdr Chakravarthy, I have no idea. but an exchange of emails showing how this information can be procured is given below. Thanks to the SAGongs Email list for this.


I had acquired this primarily to fill in gaps in my type collection, it
turned out in the process I reunited some medals together. So kept them together.

The Name is IO-52968 Jemdr M L Chakravarthy IEME

I have five medals from his group as follows

GSM47 "Jammu and Kashmir 1947-48" Clasp - IO-52968 JEMDR. M.L.CHAKRAVARTHY, I.E.M.E.
Raksha Medal 1965 - SL-791 LT. M.L.CHAKBABORTHI, G.S.CORPS.
Indian Independence Medal - I.O.52968 JEMDR.MAKHAN LAL CHAKRAVORTHY, E.M.E
1939-45 War Medal I.O.52968 JEMDR.M.L.CHAKRAVARTY, I.E.M.E
India Service Medal 1939-45 I.O.52968 JEMDR.M.L. CHAKRABARTHY, I.E.M.E

The name is spelt differently on all the five medals but is obviously the same person. No ribbons came with them, so I want to get them mounted. But before that I would like to know if there is a possibility of me missing some from the group. So any specific info from the IALs is appreciated. If that is not available, is it possible to give some sketch info going by the commission numbers - as to when he must have become a Jemadar or got commissioned in the Special List? Probably work backwards to find out when he joined the IA etc..


Response from Sushil T ( Funilly I have not recieved this email in the list and only saw this now. All i can say is Crikey - I should have inserted a blank 1939-45 Star ribbon in there... ah well...)

From: Sushil T
Date: Wed Aug 4, 2004 3:42 pm
Subject: Re: [SAGongs] Jemadar from EME (Lt in Special List)

Dear Jagan,

IAL 3/1952: JCOs EME, Workshop Branch, Cadre of Craftsmen. Jemdars: IO 52968 ML Chakravorty Date of sustantive rank: 24 dec. 1944. Enrolled: 14 Jan 1942

IAL 6/1957 JCOs EME, Workshop Branch, Cadre of Craftsmen. Jemdars: JC 52968 ML Chakravorty Ante dtaed seniority without effect on pay and allowances 22.4.44.

The 1939-45 Star is definately missing.



Response from Cliff P

From: p c

Date: Wed Aug 4, 2004 4:35 pm
Subject: RE: [SAGongs] Jemadar from EME (Lt in Special List)

Dear Jagan

I first tried to find M.L.Chakravarty IEME in the following IA lists:
04/1943 and 04/1945. There is no trace of him therein.

I then tried the 09/1951 IAL and there he is, listed as 52968-IO Jemadar M.L. Chakravorty in the EME Workshop Branch (Cadre of Craftsmen). He first enrolled on 14.0.1942 and was commissioned on 24.12.1944. That's all I can extract from my IALs (I have only one Republic of India list).

I doubt whether, during the two world wars, the IAL clerical staff managed to keep abreast of the vast number of newly commissioned officers, and it does not surprise me that MLC was omitted in the 04/1945 list.

I cannot find anything further on your man, and there is nothing in Rufus Simon's volume one of the EME history "Their Formative Years".

I hope the above will be of some help.



The actual story of how I got these is a good enough tale, probably best told some other day.

The Liberation Times : Commemorating 30 Years since India's Greatest Victory

An email prompted me to look back at the mini-website I had made about four years back. I look back at it with amazement, because i remember those hectic two weeks, I was literally writing stuff half the time and designing HTML half the time - It was back breaking work for fifteen days plus. And just when I had one more issue to go, calamity struck with one of the biggest personal crisis i had faced till date (or till now for that matter) and the Last issue for Dec 17th never got made.

Once in a while the odd visitor stumbles onto the website, gets pleasantly surprised and drops me an email. I read the mail, think about that hectic period when I built this, which brings a wry smile to my face.

Boy, I wish i nver go thru that kind of a phase ever again! , next time I will hire half a dozen people to do this.