Walong Day, saluting the bravery of our soldiers
S Vishnu Sharmaa, INN/Chennai, @Svs037
November 14 is popularly known across India as Childrens Day. The same day has another significance attached to it which is relatively a less known phenomenon in our country.
While November 14 is also known as Walong Day and that was the time where our brave soldiers of 6 Kumaon infantry battalion held the invading Chinese army despite all odds.
Our soldiers in small numbers and with little resources bravely fought Chinese soldiers who were far superior in both the aspects. And this is no ordinary task by any means.
The brave deed of our soldiers left an indelible impression in the military history of this nation. The number casulaties on our side was said to be 642, and 404 soldiers were said to be from 6 Kumaon. However, casualties inflicted on Chinese are said to be still higher.
So what happened on that day? Chinese army attacked with an overwhelming force claiming that Arunachal Pradesh was an integral part of their country. We were about 125 soldiers, while the Chinese side had over 2000 soldiers.
But that did not deter our bravehearts, led by gallant officers like Colonel Madiah and Major Prem Nath Bhatia they began wreaking a havoc on the Chinese army.
Couple of veteran soldiers said the tough fight our soldiers gave at Walong had forced Chinese take certain measure. They had kept a division in reserve for Tawang and that was moved to Walong.
Chinese army is said to have reinforced itself twice and Indian Army did not. At some point of time, it was known that holding the enemy was not possible as our soldiers were surrounded and also were running out of ammunition.
That did not deter our brave men in uniform. Colonel Madiah ordered his brave men to charge and go for the kill. About 100 men stepped out of their trenches and charged towards their enemy chanting their war cry ‘Kalika Mata ki jai.’
Bullets rained on our fearless soldiers. That did not deter them and they engaged in hand to hand combat with the enemy. This did shock the Chinese soldiers. The unrelenting enemy suffered heavy losses.
Losses on their side are said to be five times higher. There was no able bodied men left to defend, that helped the Chinese succeed. The battle which went on from 14 to 16 November will not go out of our memories for that was the day when our soldiers braved out till the last moment defending the country.
This brave deed of our soldiers would have left an impression that cannot be easily forgotten for Chinese army. Victory embraced them only after a huge loss of life, for our soldiers fought till there was eerie silence.
Whether it was Major Prem Bhatia, the Adjutant, firing the light machine gun or Captain Mathur, Second Lieutenant AS Khatri, late Lieutenant Bikram Singh killed in the action, Captain BC Chopra, the RMO, late Naik Bahadur Singh and score of unsung heroes of 6 Kumaon who fought bravely, their deed deserves a salute from all of us.