In their honor

This post has been published by me as a part of the Blog-a-Ton 31; the thirty-first edition of the online marathon of Bloggers; where we decide and we write. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. The theme for the month is ‘Strangers in the Night’

Image source: Wikipedia

Pavan stood watching the proceedings, mesmerized. The ‘Ritual dance between bitter brothers‘, as the Sydney Morning Herald had called it, had everyone in awe. Hordes of men, women and children thronged to watch the ceremony. A cool breeze refreshed the otherwise parched streets of the village. He stood to one side, watching the members of the ceremony as well as observing the crowd that had gathered around to watch. Cameras and handy-cams were out in full view. As he spotted a teenage boy watching the proceedings through the camera’s viewfinder, busy filming, more enthusiastic about getting it on camera than living the experience, he wondered what would be the fun in that. It wasn’t everyday that one got to see an event like this, feel its impact on our conscience. He shrugged, thinking maybe the boy was too young, he wouldn’t have gotten it anyway. All around him, there was an excited murmur, people enchanted by the event, a feeling of togetherness and brotherhood inadvertently seeping its way into the mob. Instrumental music played along, in perfect symphony, the patriotic kinds that would be played during national events.

Beside Pavan, a father hoisted his baby daughter, who was clearly in an excited mood, onto his shoulders so she could get a clearer view. A few geriatric men stood at attention, in silence. The attitude seemed to be percolate through to him, or maybe it was the purpose which had brought him here, but he stood erect too, at attention, focused on the events unfolding in front of him. His friends had not wanted to join him, they did not think it warranted the time and money he was spending on this trip. But Pavan had always known he was different, he had wanted a higher purpose in life, like he was born to do more just save some money for foreign clients or earn big bucks for himself. While his friends had been landing hot jobs in campus interviews, he had been scouring local newspapers and the internet for the career of his dreams. Now he was here to reaffirm his calling, to make sure that this was what he really wanted. He did not want to ever regret this one decision in his life.

Image source: Wikipedia

In the distance, the sunset cast deep red hues across the sky giving a magical look to the entire show, as if nature too chose to honor them. His chest swelled with pride as he recollected that he was standing at a place that had witnessed history. This was the village through which the controversial Radcliffe line, the boundary demarcation line dividing India and Pakistan upon the partition of India was drawn. The village that had been divided by independence in 1947. He watched as the parade drew to a close and the crowd erupted in a thunderous applause. On their respective sides of the border, Indian and Pakistani flags were lowered in a perfectly coordinated effort and soldiers from both sides shook hands.

Dusk was settling in, soon it would be pitch dark save for the light from the moon and the stars and the few lamp posts distributed far apart. As the retreat ended and the crowds started to disperse, his eyes sought out infantrymen on both sides of the border. What did they have to gain by their noble attempt, he wondered. Who were these men and women willing to make such huge sacrifices for billions of complete strangers? Standing alone, taking in the entire view of the Wagah border, the answer came to him from deep within the recesses of his mind. Standing guard, these strangers in the night would stay awake and alert so that the rest of their countrymen could sleep in peace.

He turned and walked back towards his destination, his hand on his shirt pocket, making sure his entry form to the Indian Armed Forces signed and ready to be posted was still there. Along with a smile on his lips, there was a spring in his step and a marked determination in his eyes. There was no doubt in his mind that coming to Wagah had been the best decision of his life.

The fellow Blog-a-Tonics who took part in this Blog-a-Ton and links to their respective posts can be checked here. To be part of the next edition, visit and start following Blog-a-Ton. Introduced By: Gayathri Kannan, Participation Count: 02

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Sabyasachi Patra

Good to see a colourful image of wagah border. I have been there and the parade and foot stamping of the soldiers is to be seen to be believed. We often forget and take our independence for granted. If the armed forces would have also got engaged in facebook "when on job" like every other corporate fellow, then imagine what will happen.

T F Carthick

Strong narrative bringing sights to life.

Someone is Special

That's a strong narration Deepa. I'm glad you to see the colorful photographs to add to the story. 🙂 Superb! Also, thanks for highlighting Strangers in the Night too! Good Luck to you..!

I wanted to inform you that I removed your comment as it is not permitted under Rules and Reminder post. Comment: "I have started reading the posts and started maintaining an internal rating too 🙂 Too much work to read everyone's in the end and it just isn't fair if I end up skipping some due to time constraints! Keep 'em coming people!"

Thanks! Keep participating and reading!

Someone is Special

Prasanna Rao

I never imagined that the phrase 'strangers in the night' could be associated to the brave and courageous army men who guard our country day and night. One of the best entries in BAT. All the Best 🙂


Interesting story. Nice twist as well.


intresting and awesomely narrated


I'll have to admit I have never been there. This is just based on the pictures and excitement conveyed by friends who have been there. But I do wish to witness it one day. Truly, what our defense personnel is beyond simply appreciation! Its a noble profession that doesn't receive the appreciation and encouragement and benefits it warrants.


Thanks TF. Its exactly that – an attempt at bringing a sight to life, considering I do not have live experience, though one day I surely wish to!


Thanks SIS! No worries about the comment deletion 🙂 I'll simply add it to the FB post 🙂


Thanks Prasanna for your appreciation 🙂 I do wish the brave and courageous get what they truly deserve! Wish you the same too!


Thanks Rachna 🙂


Thank you Vinisha. Glad you liked it! Do keep coming by!

Amit Singh

Good one Deepa …


Very well put words to deep thoughts. A unique motivating pendown. Truly inspirational turns given to the story. Bravo.

C Suresh

You have put your amazing ability to paint a picture with words to good use to laud the unsung heroes of the Indian army. Great!


Thank you Pramod! I would love to visit Wagah once to soak in the experience for myself. Best wishes to you for BAT!

Jayashree Srivatsan

Deepa, the best thing about this post is that its just the right size – not too long but just enough for us to feel the magic…Very good post…Good luck 🙂 Jai Jawan, Jai Kisan!


Thanks Suresh. Have you been there? I hope to once!


Glad you liked it Jaish! Good luck to you too! Only read the first 15 so far – should be getting to the others soon!


Amazing, I remember those thoughts and the will in the heart .. When you are at the border there is a different kind of emotion in the heart , Brought some good sad memories this post .. if only life had turned out to be different ..

loved the post.


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