Thursday, 29 January 2009


Our former President Abdul Kalaam would surely be shocked at this incidence as I am sure the present President Pratibha Patil when they will come to know about this. There is a protocol in which no kids are allowed in Rastrapati Bhawan in formal ceremonies and only those invited by names can enter. This restriction is for security reasons, but it seems security sometimes goes overboard.
Late Havildar Bahadur Singh Bohra was bestowed Ashoka Chakra posthumously. On Republic day the President bestowed the award to his widow 29 year old Shanti Bohra in front of the whole nation. Last September he lost his life while fighting with terrorists in Lawanz’s area in Jammu and Kashmir. He managed to kill three militants before succumbing to his injuries. He was awarded the country’s highest peacetime gallantry award “The Ashoka Chakra”.
But after being bestowed the award when his widow went to collect the award a few hours later at a ceremony in the Rastrapati Bhavan with her two daughters aged five and three, she was not allowed to enter with her daughters. Being an outsider and a stranger to the Capital she had no place where she could leave them. Despite repeatedly pleas she was not allowed to enter “The Rastrapati Bhavan” to receive her award along with her daughters.
There should be some arrangements at the President’s house where people who like Shanti are strangers in the city and have genuine problems can be accommodated. At least a widow with two baby daughters who has lost her husband fighting for the country deserves a little consideration.