Thursday, December 17, 2009

An Old Prisoner from 1947-48 revisited.

The photo on the left shows an old frontier tribesman, who formed part of the marauding forces in the Invasion of Kashmir, captured after Indian troops routed the tribals at the Battle of Shelatang. It was said that this old man was captured after Baramula town was taken - around November 8th, 1947.

This old man was the star of many news . I remember seeing him in quite a few places. Now another newsclip has surfaced on the British Pathe Website - titled "Nehru In Kashmir", it shows the visit of PM Nehru and various other delegates to Kashmir sometime in November 47.

One still from the clip shows the same Prisoner - being examined by Group Captain Arjan Singh DFC (later Air Chief and Marshal of the AF). I do not remember where Arjan Singh was - probably with Air HQ or something, but he is seen in the clip very curious about the tribesman's coat buttons - My guess, the buttons have some kind of an embossed crest that sparked Arjan's interest.

I do wonder who this old POW was - if he got repatriated, if he went back to his village with tales of his stay in India and all.. etc etc.

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