Saturday, February 19, 2011

Former Indian Army general arrested after sentencing in court martial

Economic Times 19 Feb, 2011, 10.50AM IST,IANS
JALANDHAR: Army authorities at the 11 Corps have put a former top general under formal arrest after he was convicted of professional misconduct and sentenced to three years rigorous imprisonment by a general court martial (GCM) in a multi-million ration scam in this cantonment city Friday.

Lt Gen. S.K. Sahni, who was from the Army Service Corps (ASC) and served as Director- General for supplies and transport, was indicted by a probe by the army authorities for allegedly supplying sub-standard meat and dry rations to troops stationed at high altitude areas, including the highest battle-field in the world, at Siachen glacier.

The officer has been accused of allowing the purchase of expired rations for troops during his tenure as Director-General of the ASC. He was also accused of reversing the tendering process for procurement of pulses, over-looking recommendations of stock sampling, failing to ensure timely completion of supply contracts and over-looking other procedural formalities.

The ex-general was under virtual house arrest since August last year. He had got himself admitted to the military hospital here soon after the GCM commenced against him and he was taken into custody.
click here to read more

Amazing Grace: Corps of Signals Pipes and Drum

A photograph of the Bagpipers playing the tune Amazing Grace (Hymn), who form part of Corps of Signals Pipes and Drum, during Centenary Celebrations at Jabalpur on 14 Feb 2011

Corps of Signals Indian Army celebrated its Centenary at Jabalpur, where No. 1 Signal Training Center is located, from 13-15 Feb 2011 in a very beffiting manner.
One of the soul stirring and inspiring event was a Band Concert after dark in the Gowrishankar Parade Ground (named after one of our illustrious Signals general, who earned a Maha Vir Chakra-a very high gallantry award while commanding a brigade in Dera Baba Nanalk Sector, in Punjab, during 1971 War with Pakistan).
A poignant item in the Band Concert was playing of the Hymn 'AMAZING GRACE' by nearly thirty Corps of Signals Bagpipers. They came marching in slow time in two columns well separated by a large screen, each column lit by soft blue light, playing beautifully the haunting tune of the Hymn. As they came nearer, the sound of the bagpipes gradually increasing.
The Pipers formed up in two rows in front of the audience continued to play the tune and then slowly returned the way they had come; the sound fading away in the semi darkness and leaving everyone spell bound and may be with some moist eyes as well!!
A recorded version of the same tune played by US Marine Bagpipers can be seen and heard on this video below:

The Corps of Signals Pipers played absolutely in the same manner and I feel even better, except that the setting was more serene and stirring, being in the quietness of night under subdued light!

"Amazing Grace" is a Hymn written by English poet John Newton in 1973 and published in 1779.
Newton wrote the words from personal experience. He joined the Royal Navy and became a sailor, eventually participating in the slave trade. One night a terrible storm battered his vessel so severely that he became frightened enough to call out to God for mercy. After a few years he quit going to sea altogether and began studying theology.
Ordained in the Church in 1764, Newton began to write hymns with poet William Cower. "Amazing Grace" was written to illustrate a sermon on New Year's Day of 1773.
Gradually it was sung in Churches and congregations and over time set to many types of music. However, perhaps it sounds the best when played by Bagpipers.
Each Regiment and infantry battalion in the Indian Army has a Pipes and Drum Band. Corps of Signals has two such bands, one located with each of its two Signal Training Centers.
All Praise for Brig SK Pillai, Commandant 1 STC and his Team for masterminding and showcasing such amazing events, which make the Corps of yesterday and today so proud.
Harbhajan Singh
Lt Gen
Former Signal Officer-in-Chief and Senior Colonel Commandant

Friday, February 18, 2011

His Princess Royal- A book by Signal Officer

Dear Veterans,
You may not know nor have heard of me. I am of 1947 batch and retired in Nov 1976. But you and I are related because we both belong to the great Corps of Signals.
I have written a fiction titled, "His Princess Royal" in which the hero is a Signals Officer. The book will be of tremendous reading interest to all Army Officers and Signals Officers in particular, especially those who have served in Army HQ Sig Regt (in the old location near Lok Sabha) and have done their SODE course.
The book is available in all Landmark outlets in all cities. It is priced at Rs 160. If you don't feel like visiting a bookshop you may approach the publisher directly; either send an email or contact on telephone and the publisher will send it to you by courier, of course, after you have made the payment. His postal address is: Ana books, Plot 1352, 19th Main road, Anna Nagar West, Chennai- 600040. Tele:(044) 42611223, 64601100, Cell 9840080014 and e-mail:
Those living in and around Anna nagar, Chennai, may just walk across and collect the copy.
Col Israel Jayakaran (Retd)

Comment: Can anyone send us the Review for the benefit of the readers?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Corps of Signals: 14th Reunion Humour

Reunion Humour
True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your Young Officers are running the 'Signal' Corps.
Top 10 Reasons NOT to Miss Corps of Signals 14th Reunion at Jabalpur
1. You'll laugh, cry, and reminisce with some of your old Devils.
2. It's fine to not remember somebody. That's why name tags were invented!
3. Feel better realizing you are not the only one who has been married with grand kids and is still looking. (hmmmm...)
4. Rekindle or begin renewed relationships or exchange notes of yesteryear's.
5. Show everyone how sexy bald is!
6. Even if you had some negative experiences, don't fret about it, you'll most likely laugh about it now.
7. Enjoy an evening out without the kids (or grand kids), as the case might be.
8. Use the Reunion as an opportunity to diet, play golf or shape up. (Okay, maybe it's TOO late for this one...!)
9. Humour the Reunion Committee and Organisers who made it happen- and our 3 days a breeze- we are a bunch of deluded diehards who think everyone should show up to appreciate our efforts. (Uh, yeah!)
10. And finally, studies have shown that those who were initially hesitant about attending their reunions, discover it was the event they wouldn't have missed!

Corps of Signals- The “21st century arm of our forces"

Ministry of Defence 17-February, 2011 18:59 IST
Antony Asks Forces to gear up to Fight Cyber Wars
The Defence Minister Shri AK Antony has called upon the Armed Forces to be vigilant against emerging cyber threats. Addressing the centenary celebrations of the Corps of Signals here today, he called upon the forces to keep abreast of latest technologies. Terming the Corps of Signals as the “21st century arm of our forces”, Shri Antony said it has a major role in promoting inter-Service synergy and joint operations.

“The Corps is at the forefront of transforming the Indian Army to a network-centric force. It must continuously enhance its ability to absorb latest technologies in collaboration with the Industry and R&D establishment. The Corps has done commendable work, be it in fielding futuristic strategic defence communication networks, or development of state-of-the-art tactical communication systems. The contribution of the Corps in enhancing cyber security is worth a mention. However, the Corps needs to be ever vigilant, as cyber threats continue to multiply and intensify by the day,” Shri Antony said.

Speaking on the occasion the Minister of State for Defence Shri MM Pallam Raju said that besides being vital to the Armed Forces, Telecommunication and Cyber Infrastructure is a national and strategic asset as various other key sectors such as the Railways, Airlines, Banks and Industry depend on it. Shri Pallam Raju said that I&CT will be a key factor in reshaping the methodology of war fighting in the future.

“Any serious disruption can jeopardise our functioning including our responses to the war being raised by our adversaries. The ramification of cyber attacks launched by an unknown adversary or individual has necessitated a relook at the planning and security of Command and Control infrastructure at the highest levels of national governance,” Shri Pallam Raju said.

Underlining that the modern warfare has undergone a paradigm shift, the Chief of Army Staff General VK Singh said that the Corps of Signals has emerged as the proverbial “nervous system” of the Armed Forces in contemporary times.

“In all future wars, information superiority will be one of the key battle winning factors and future battlefield milieu would require communication system that are secure, responsive and reliable,” said General Singh. HH/NN (Release ID :69874)
Antony Asks Forces to gear up to Fight Cyber Wars

Definition: Nervous System
System of specialized cells (neurons, or nerve cells) that conduct stimuli from a sensory receptor through a neuron network to the site (e.g., a gland or muscle) where the response occurs. In humans, it consists of the central and peripheral nervous systems, the former consisting of the brain and spinal cord and the latter of the nerves, which carry impulses to and from the central nervous system. The cranial nerves handle head and neck sensory and motor activities, except the vagus nerve, which conducts signals to visceral organs. Each spinal nerve is attached to the spinal cord by a sensory and a motor root. These exit between the vertebrae and merge to form a large mixed nerve, which branches to supply a defined area of the body. Disorders include amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, chorea, epilepsy, myasthenia gravis, neural tube defect, parkinsonism, and poliomyelitis. Effects of disorders range from transient tics and minor personality changes to major personality disruptions, seizures, paralysis, and death.
Read more: Answer. com

Army flags off motorcycle expedition

TEZPUR, Jan 31: The Corps of Signals of Indian Army will be completing 100 years of its service to the nation on February 15. To commemorate the glorious occasion, the Corps is holding various events across the nation with the aim of showcasing its proud history and achievements, according to a press release.

The Mercury Explorer Motorcycle Expedition which is a part of the ongoing centenary celebrations arrived in Tezpur station in the evening from Tenga on January 30, after covering more than 3,000 km. The motorcycle team was flagged off by Lieutenant General Gyan Bhushan, General Officer Commanding, Gajraj Corps on the balance of its expedition in a befitting ceremony. In spite of passing through rugged and difficult hilly terrain the expedition members displayed indefatigable spirit to continue their further journey to Shillong.

Commencing from January 5 from Chandigarh, the motorcycle expedition aims at motivating the youths in Himalayan region to join the Army and also to interact with armed forces veterans to rekindle the nostalgia of their association. The expedition led by Captain KIS Khangura comprising 15-member will cover approximately 6,150 km passing through Himalayan terrain in J&K, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand, UP, Bihar, Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh. It has already covered half the distance and the balance is to be covered in the next fortnight before it’s flagging in at Jabalpur on February 14 by the Signal Officer-in-Chief.
Army flags off motorcycle expedition

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Easier access to Swiss bank accounts?

NDTV Correspondent, Updated: February 16, 2011 00:21 IST
New Delhi: The Swiss government says it is willing to relax the rules required for administrative assistance to get information on bank accounts in Swiss banks. This will help countries like India to trace 'black' money stashed in Swiss bank accounts.
So far, Swiss banking secrecy norms have been extremely rigid when it comes to getting information on account holders. Swiss laws require countries to have so much information beforehand that it is hard to even track an account. This is likely to become easier.
Usually, the name of the account holder, the account number and the also name of the bank are required to track accounts. But the Swiss authorities say under the new proposals they will be able to accept other forms of identification as well.
These proposals have been put forward after the global transparency forum in Paris said, in a report, the Swiss requirements were too rigid and it was difficult to get information on account holders.
The Swiss Parliament, which has traditionally been opposed to lifting banking secrecy, has to first clear these proposals for them to come into effect.
Swiss authorities insist that even under the new rules there will be no room for fishing expeditions; for them to cooperate, a strong case against the account holder and, reliable information will have to be furnished.
Easier access to Swiss bank accounts?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Diamond Triangle team: 14th Reunion and Centenary Celebrations

Corps of Signals Centenary Celebrations
Indian Express Mon Jan 31 2011, 03:14 hrs Pune
The National Defence Academy (NDA) stopover of the Diamond Triangle Expedition, which started from Mhow in Madhya Pradesh, was marked by a spectacular 40-minute aerial display.
The aim of the team, which includes 13 pilots and comprises four microlight aircraft and two powered hang-gliders, is motivating more youth to join the Armed Forces
“The lot consists of two Savannah, an X Air and a Hanuman aircraft and Clipper hang-gliders. The whole idea is to expose more youngsters to the glory of the Indian Armed Forces and attract them to join the services,” said Major Ankush Goyal, one of the pilots in the team.
The expedition, undertaken by the Military College of Telecommunication Engineering (MCTE), Mhow, with participation of the Army Aero Nodal Centre (AANC) — an adventure node run by the Corps of Signals under the Army Adventure Wing—- marks the centenary celebrations of the Corps of Signals.
The next stop is Belgaum on the Maharashtra-Karnataka border. It will touch Goa and head back to Madhya Pradesh. The expedition will cover 2,700 kilometres aerially and the path is roughly a triangular and hence the name.
“...We are heading to Goa followed by Jabalpur on February 11. En route, we are displaying aerial acrobatics at various places,” said Goyal.
The aerial display at the NDA was attended by NDA Deputy Commandant, Air Vice Marshal Ajit S Bhonsle and Chief of Administration, Southern Command, Major General Chacko Tharakan besides officers and cadets. The team displayed stunts like low flying, ladder formation, split flying and paradrop.
Diamond Triangle team sparkles at NDA

NDC Creates History

National Defence College, New Delhi, which is affiliated to University of Madras, recently conducted a Viva-Voce for Ph.D Degree on Defence related topic. It is for the first time a public Viva-Voce for Ph.D in Defence and Strategic Studies was conducted at any Defence institute. It was also an historic occasion for University of Madras when it conducted a Viva-Voce outside the geographical boundaries of its Jurisdiction.
National Defence College, New Delhi conducts M.Phil course under autonomous pattern and was also recognised as a research institution in 2009. Since then various research activities at NDC have been initiated. Maj Gen (Retd) GD Bakshi who was a Senior Directing Staff at National Defence College from 01 Aug 2006 to 31 May 2008, registered for his Ph.D Degree with department of Defence and Strategic Studies, University of Madras. He defended his research work publically on "Limited War Under conditions of Nuclear Symmetry: The Urgent Need for an Indian doctrine" on 09 Feb 2011 at NDC. The aspect enunciated by Gen Bakshi was debated by senior serving, retired Defence officers and experts in this field in an open Viva-Voce.
Air Marshal PK Roy, Commandant, National Defence College while congratulating Maj Gen (Retd) Bakshi exhorted the course officers to emulate Gen Bakshi's achievement. HH/Raman (Release ID :69816)
NDC Creates History

Corps of Signals’ bike expedition: Centenary Celebrations

Tribune News Service Chandigarh, January 6
As part of its ongoing centenary celebrations, the Corps of Signals is undertaking a motorcycle expedition that will traverse 6,150 km through 14 states over a period of 42 days.
Consisting of two officers and 13 other ranks, the “Mercury Explore Motorcycle Expedition” was flagged-off from Chandi Mandir by the General Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Western Command, Lt Gen SR Ghosh, today.
The expedition will culminate on February 14 at Jabalpur, where the corps has its training centre.
Known as “Information Warriors”, the corps is completing 100 years of its existence on February 15.
The aim of the expedition is to motivate the youth to join the Army and also to interact with armed forces veterans en route.
To add to the adventure, the expedition is planned to travel across the breadth of country from Srinagar in the North to Arunachal Pradesh in the far East, passing through some of the most rugged and difficult terrain.
Corps of Signals’ bike expedition flagged off

Base Jump: Corps of Signals Centenary Celebrations

NEW DELHI: In a daring effort, Lt Col Satyendra Verma is India's first BASE jumper leaping off the 235-metre-tall Pitampura Tower here.
BASE jumping, considered one of the most dangerous adventure sports in the world, differs from the more popular sky-diving in that the former is made from a much lower altitude giving the jumper only a few seconds to deploy the parachute.
An expert
Col Verma is the captain of the Army Sports sky diving team and undertook the BASE jump as part of the centenary celebrations of the Indian Army's Corps of Signals. He has attempted more than 1,200 sky-diving jumps and is an expert in hand-gliding, para-gliding, hot-air ballooning, sky-diving and BASE jumping.
He has participated in World Military Parachuting Championships in Russia and Switzerland. Backed by his massive sky-diving experience which is considered a pre-requisite, Col. Verma trained in Malaysia and the US before venturing on his first BASE jump. He has earlier performed BASE jumps from K L Tower in Kuala Lumpur and Perrine Bridge in the US.
Elated by his success, a proud Col. Verma said he hoped his effort would make sky-diving and BASE jumping more popular in India. “I have done many such jumps outside India but this one being the first in our country makes it truly special,” he gushed. “My attempt reiterates the famed daredevilry of the Army and the Corps of Signals. I hope this invites the attention of youth seeking adventure and inspires them to join the armed forces.”
Corps of Signals, known as the “nerves” of the Indian Army, shoulders the responsibility for providing to the Indian Army peace-time static and combat communication.
Besides providing conventional communication, the Corps is also responsible for IT-related activities including networking, automated message switching and handling system and installation of state-of-the-art exchanges with latest interactive voice response systems.
The Hindu: Armyman dares country's first BASE jump

The Year of the War Disabled

Dear Chander,
You must have read the press reports regarding the announcement of this year as The Year of the War Disabled by the COAS. The genesis lies in a meeting I had with the Chief, at my behest, wherein I had pointed out the need to view the war disabled as a distinct and important group that had been neglected for decades. I followed it up with a brief, a copy of which I am enclosing. This was around mid-2010. Now that the Chief has made the announcement, I can place the points I had made public, so that everyone can peruse them and perhaps add or subtract other relevant issues. In addition, we may be able to keep a tag on progress on some, if not all the issues.
I must add that besides the announcement by the Chief, both Hari Handa (President DIWAVE) and I have had a fruitful dialogue with the AG and the senior Generals in the AG's Branch and Hari has been having periodic meetings with the staff at the AG's Branch.
It is a somewhat long paper, firstly for you to put on the web and secondly for people to read it; as we all know, many do not like to read anything more than a page or so! It also involves additional work for you, especially when you have your hands full already.
I have also written an article on the subject of the War Disabled, which is yet to be published; it is now lying with the second newspaper! Once it is published, I will also circulate it.
Warm regards.
Lt Gen Vijay Oberoi, Former VCOAS, President War Wounded Foundation
Problems of War Disabled

Army to observe 2011 as year for disabled soldiers
New Delhi. The Indian Army will observe 2011 as the year for its disabled personnel to honour the soldiers who have been rendered handicapped while serving the nation, Chief of the Army Staff General V K Singh has declared.
During 2011, the Army would "concentrate only" on the welfare of disabled personnel and a number of programmes would be launched to this end, he told reporters.

"We are working out programmes under which we will give attention to all our disabled. It is not that we don't do it now, but for one year we want to concentrate only on this particular aspect," Gen Singh said on the sidelines of a function to honour war widows and disabled personnel.

Asked about some complaints from veterans on pension and other related issues, the Army Chief said the Army has been working towards addressing the complaints and a database of ex-servicemen is being prepared at their regimental centres.

"Our endeavour is to prepare such a system that we can access the database of all the centres and after that see the shortcomings. And then send our personnel to these people and enquire about their problems and try to provide solutions for them."

The Army Chief and his wife Bharati Singh, who is the president of the Army Wives Welfare Association (AWWA), handed over specially modified scooters to 14 disabled soldiers and provided monetary help to war widows on the occasion. (IANS)
Army to observe 2011 as year for disabled soldiers

Monday, February 14, 2011

IESM Rally held in Bhiwani

Dear Colleagues,
An ESM rally was held at Bhiwani (Haryana) today. It was attended by approximately 400 ESM including families. The anchor Veteran Hav Rajbir Singh, 8 JAT had organized it meticulously. Colonel Rakesh Chaturvedi, Capt Dhir Singh, Lt Kameshwar Pande and self had joined the event.
The speakers underscored the point of ESM having come into their own. It was brought out that in the earlier Pay Commissions the pleas by Service Chiefs even to include a defence forces representative were summarily rejected by the Government. In contrast now the Government has gone to the extent of accepting constituting a separate Pay Commission for defence forces. This has been possible only because of the pressure that has been built up by the IESM since April 2008.
The main achievement of the IESM has been to arouse the awareness among the veterans of the injustice they have been subjected to for a long time. But this is only the first step.
Best regards,
Lt Gen (Emeritus) Raj Kadyan, PVSM, AVSM, VSM

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Corps of Signals: 14th Reunion in 1 STC, Jabalpur

Centenary Celebrations: Photos of Passing out Parade, opening of Girls Hostel and Exibition Hockey Match

Click here to view the Report and Photographs of the 14th Reunion and Centenary Celebrations- New Blog

Corps of Signals: 14th Reunion in 1 STC, Jabalpur

The Corps of Signals was raised on 15 Feb 1911 and will be celebrating its centenary on 15 Feb 2011. The journey of hundred years has been a saga of rich heritage, technological excellence, modernisation, brotherhood and pure soldiering. Several functions in various military stations throughout the Centenary Year (2010-2011) had maximum participation of serving and retired personnel. The final part of the celebrations will culminate in the 14th Reunion which will enable old comrades to renew and maintain contacts with each other and to honour and pay homage to our heroes. This is being held in 1 STC, Jabalpur and is an excellent expedient to inculcate a sense of tradition and espirt-de-corps. To this end, Signal Officer in Chief and Senior Colonel Commandant Lt Gen P Mohapatra, PVSM, AVSM, ADC and Brig SK Pillai, VSM Commandant 1 STC have planned the 14th Reunion Celebrations- a three day packed with events- for a Galaxy of serving and veterans of the Corps of Signals to showcase the past and present. These spectacular events will be unfolded on the three days from 13th Feb to 15 Feb 2011.

Click here to view the Report and Photographs of the 14th Reunion and Centenary Celebrations- New Blog


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