Book Review: Himalayan Blunder


Oct 20, 1959, Ladakh:

Havaldar Karam Singh and his 20-strong troop, doing their routine border patrolling rounds amid heavy snowfall. In an eyewink nine men in the patrol are buried dead under a hailstorm of bullets, and the rest including Karam Singh are taken prisoners. Courtesy the Chinese army. What stuns the Havaldar is not so much the unexpected onslaught as where it occurred: 40 kilometres right on this side of the border .

The Army Chief, General Thimmayya’s worst fears about China stood confirmed. When he confronted the powers that be and requested an immediate modernisation of the Armed Forces, and special attention to Chinese designs, V.K. Krishna Menon, the Defence Minister, analysed the problem differently. In his view, General Thimmayya was a soldier of the Raj era who was alarmed easily. Pakistan, not China was India’s “number one” enemy, he opined. The General’s response was interesting: I understand our Defence Minister’s perspective. I have regards for his ability but I’m aggrieved at his foolishness. One does not rank enemies as first, second and the rest. Perhaps, it is done in Communist politics; as an Army Chief, I do not rank enemies.

The General submitted his resignation when Menon’s interference breached tolerance. But a panic-stricken Nehru’s emotional entreaty charmed the General into withdrawing it. In Parliament however, Nehru rose in defence of Menon: I’ve spoken to General Thimmayya. He blows issues out of proportion. He has unnecessarily created a misunderstanding with Krishna Menon, a veteran diplomat. It is ridiculous to blame Menon for interference in the issue of promotions in the Armed Forces. Silly! I totally reject General Thimmayya’s allegations.


Himalayan Blunder

This rather lengthy recount is one of the several significant botches recorded in John P Dalvi’s Himalayan Blunder. The book is a Manual of War Failure, recommended reading for everybody who wants to know why exactly India lost the 1962 war with China.

It was banned almost immediately on its release, in 1969. I read the abridged Kannada translation by Ravi Belagere. Which kind of struck me as funny. And unfortunate that I had to read a translated version because the original in English is banned. The excerpts I’ve quoted in this post are my (re)translatations from Kannada. Funny, isn’t it? Happens only in India.

John Parashuram Dalvi was the Brigadier of the 7th Infantry formed to “fight” at the North-East Frontier Agency (NEFA), which is today’s Arunachal Pradesh and parts of Nagaland. His eyewitness account of the war, events that led to it, as well as his wonderful insights into the 1962 humiliation form Himalayan Blunder.

Dalvi recounts a chilling precursor to 1962. During his days in the Wellington Defence Services Staff College in 1950, he quotes a colleague and army veteran, Joe of British origin: Friends, leaders of your country have no foresight. They are mum about the Chinese invasion of Tibet. They don’t understand the reality that India’s backdoor has been broken down…. Boys! Take it from me. Some of you folks sitting here will fight with the Chinese army before you retire.

Foresight was least expected from Nehru who in those days hallucinated as the champion of world peace. Nehru’s stand on the invasion of Tibet was but a minor testimony to this: we don’t have any right to put our forces in Tibet irrespective of whether it is independent, or is part of China.

Starting around 1951, China began its silent preparations: it laid roads capable of transporting army vehicles (supporting something like 4 tonnes), made airstrips to land its combat aircraft, set up telephones and communication networks… In parallel, it began marching its troops into the region and even gobbled up parts of Aksai Chin territory belonging to India.

Meanwhile, Jawaharlal Nehru’s Hindi-Chini bhai bhai symphony had reached a crescendo. China played along–it had recently concluded a war with Korea and badly needed time and resources for what it had in mind.

Brigadier Dalvi narrates with heart-rending precision the betrayal of the political leadership at every step. However, the principal culprits responsible for our defeat stand out clearly: Jawaharlal Nehru, Krishna Menon, and General B.M. Kaul who Nehru had handpicked to lead the war efforts against China.

B.M. Kaul sitting in Delhi had no clue about the situation on the ground in Arunachal Pradesh. He had allowed himself to believe what–a mere month before the actual Chinese invasion–Nehru said: China is not a warmonger. They have a “minor border dispute” with us. Dhola Post was an unncessary outpost created at B.M. Kaul’s behest: it was an invitation to attack. Yet, on September 8 1962, when the first sparks of war flew, he was holidaying in Srinagar with his family. And he didn’t think it was important to cancel his vacation: after all, Pandit Nehru was abroad. B.M. Kaul finally landed at the spot on Oct 10, 1962. Says Dalvi,

We watched the platoon of Punjabis under Major Chaudary’s leadership march towards Yum Sola….General Kaul stood next to me, weighing the success of his first stratagem. The platoon’s strength including Major Chaudary was 51. They’d barely covered a few feet when the sky came apart. Around 800 Chinese, positioned at the bank of Nam ka Chu [river] and atop the Thagla mountain began showering bullets. The first round hurt Major Chaudary’s legs. The Punjabi Platoon retaliated furiously, and dismembered and wounded a few hundred Chinese. Six of our men died in the first round. But General Kaul’s enthusiasm didn’t wither. As our men readied themselves for the second round of assault, a huge swarm of Chinese troops descended. Major Chaudary yelled to General Kaul to save his men. Never the men to turn their back from battle, our Punjabi Platoon looked at us, helplessly. All of us, including General Kaul understood what that meant. Our men had run out of ammunition.

The courageous General who had roared reassuringly to the Indian public about teaching China a lesson, couldn’t stomach the reality he saw before him. Dalvi recounts Kaul’s true character.

My God! You’re right. China has prepared itself for a full-scale war. It’s each man for himself from now on. You’re in charge of your Brigade. This is not in my reach. Only a Brigadier can execute this kind of war.

And he turned and left, leaving Dalvi to helplessly watch the massacre of the whole platoon. Dalvi records several similar incidents where a grossly underprepared Indian army faced the Chinese who were superior to them in every single aspect. A most telling instance:

…. a soldier saluted me as I stepped into the bunker and said, “Sahib, look there! the enemy is on the opposite slope. They’re burning firewood to beat the cold.” I felt a slap of humiliation. This was one of the rare instances this happened in thousands of wars throughout history. Burning a fire at night is a sure invitation for the enemy to attack. But then, this enemy on the slopes of the Thagla mountain was confident: both of his strength and our sorry state. He knew for certain that we would not attack: we could not.

In his “final journey,” Dalvi pays pages of homage to every footsoldier, Major, signaller, Havaldar…small and big, who died defending the indefensible. And the reason? You can’t read this with a straight face:

The Chinese used the same war strategies in vogue for centuries but…. their guns were more modern, and their clothes were warmer than ours…. out there, away from the warm world, the October chill doesn’t descend from the skies; it climbs from the depths of the spinal cord. All our men had to wear were cotton clothes suited for summer, shoes which slide on snow… the only colour my men could see was the ash-white colour of death. A flash of sunlight was enough to blind them. This blindness caused several men to walk directly into the waiting arms of the enemy. My request for snow glasses was granted, all right, but when they arrived, the air-dropped bag dropped somewhere in the abyss-like crevices…

You need to read this book to believe the shamelessless of Nehru’s government, which failed to supply these unfortunate men with food. Towards the end, Dalvi and those that remained went without food for more than 48 hours.

We descended the Dhola mountain after the Chinese disappeared from sight. We gave up the final hope of even sighting a small tukdi (regiment) of our men. I descended rapidly out of a sheer will to live. The slope ended in a forest…the path was even tougher to navigate. Meanwhile, I had lost four of the eleven men following me. I reached a clearing, which then led to a small mud road. It was all over.

Dalvi had walked right into a full-fledged Chinese army camp. On October 22 1962, 9:22 A.M, John P. Dalvi was taken prisoner of war. He remained in Chinese custody from October 22 1962 till about May 1963. What’s more interesting is the aftermath.

We landed in Dum Dum airport in Calcutta on May 4 1963. We were received cordially, appropriately. But the silence there was disquieting. I realized later. We had to prove we weren’t brainwashed by Chinese ideology. We had to prove we were still loyal to India. My own army maintained a suspicious distance. The irony cannot be harsher: this treatment from a country, which for more than a decade had brainwashed itself into holding the Chinese baton wherever it went.

It is more apt to call the Indo-China War as the Battle of Thagla, the altar where Pandit Nehru sacrificed hundreds of unprepared, ill-equipped, and underfed Indian soldiers as the price of his ineptitude.

Small wonder, the book is banned in India. I wager that even if it was not banned, we’d never learn because Himalayan Blunder has simply proven its contemporary relevance in the sense of history repeating itself: notice today’s Chinese cheerleaders who occupy disproportionate clout in the UPA government. Yet none of us seem to pay heed to their misdeeds–from escalated Naxalism/Maoism to their shenanigans in Nepal.

By the way, the Battle of Thagla began on October 20, 1962 and lasted just over 3 hours, between 5 A.M and 8 A.M. An entire brigade was massacred.

Postscript: The book is very expensive to buy from Dear reader, if you can get the original at around $20, I shall buy it from you. Leave a comment to let me know.

Cross-posted on Desicritics.

101 comments for “Book Review: Himalayan Blunder

  1. Francis Ouseph
    January 13, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    That “Joe” was Lt. Gen Joe Lentaigne Commandant, Indian Army Staff College (1948-1955 ), Wellington, among other things. Also the 4th Division in NEFA was essentially deployed at brigade strength ( 7th Inf. brigade) Not that the Brits always got it right when it came to foreign policy; theirs was a disaster in Afghanistan, and still continues to be even after a couple of hundred years or so…

    The HardCover version is available at flipkart from NATARAJ publishers for Rs. 302 only.

    Must read for all Indians. Buy the book in Hard Cover; your children and grand children also need to know the truth when they grow up !

    • Arun Chatterjee
      October 5, 2013 at 6:04 AM

      I am reading the book Himalayan Blunder. I think our leaders have no depth of a serious subject. A hero just died for a cause for his country.

      Arun Chatterjee
      Calgary, Canada

  2. tushar
    February 28, 2012 at 10:22 AM

    I think this article would have some relevance on this thread…

    Let’s celebrate memory of a true hero

    On Tuesday, February 28, when all the newspapers and news channels would be busy covering the next phase of the crucial Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls, there would be some attending the function at Imphal to commemorate the centenary of a true national hero — Maj Bob Ranenglao Khathing, who won NEFA (Arunachal Pradesh) back for us. …


    The Governor sent a Dakota to pick him up from Tezpur and they flew to Delhi and went to see Prime Minister Nehru, who was livid.

    “Who asked you to do this?” he vented his anger at the Governor. “I wish you had the good sense to consult me before you commissioned this colossal stupidity?” he mourned. “I want a complete black out on this incident,” he ordered the PMO. India acknowledged its control over NEFA only in 1954 when Bob’s men were replaced by Special Security Bureau.’s-celebrate-memory-of-a-true-hero.html

  3. Pratham
    February 21, 2012 at 10:57 PM

    I got a second hand book from a scrap dealer in pune for rs 20… cant tell you if its the first edition as no year of publishing…. The publisher is hind pocket books… The book is complete and unabriged…. It looks pretty old and there is also a list of there other books in the back with prices like rs 3 and rs 4… So im guessing its a very old edition( although in mint condition(well atleast the inner pages))…..

  4. Nitin Kashyap
    February 6, 2012 at 12:15 AM

    Hi All,

    You can buy this book from “flipkart” at the below link:–&_r=qVryN1KREE+yBuOmBk0pig–&ref=44737d28-19cd-4063-8b84-639ce99905d3

    I have got this book in 277 INR which is very less compared to the price mentioned here on Amazon.

    The book is a chilling story of all the miscalculation and failure of the government and how they disapproved the ground realities and made our soldiers a canon fodder for their (Politician’s) gains.

    I recommend every Indian to read this book which explains the situations in which our soldiers are forced to fight without adequate food, cloth, ration and ammunition.

    Only GOD knows what is going to happen with India. If these conditions prevails now (which is the case now), one should not be surprised of a repeat of 1962 war…

  5. Madan Mohan Pandey(Retired)
    November 27, 2011 at 11:14 PM

    Its heartening to read even as comments,I am since long searching this book in Mumbai book stalls,can any one tell where I can get it…..It is true that the Nehru was the Jaichand of India,he has given the wound to this country which is impossible to fill .Today’s problem led by any congress govt since independent it was only policy of congress .They divided the country and ruling. Even today it is visible any incursion in boundary by Chines or any other dispute,these congrese will pacify that,they do not want that thing should come and public anger may remove them from the scene of politics…so sorry state they only thing that Nehru,Rajiv and indra gandhi only did thing for this other leader..actually it was blunder mistake of Gandhi..if Sadar patel were choosen for the leadership or even was better…Sala Nehru to Mounbetan ki Bibi ke chakkar me tha….Gaddar..????

  6. vinay
    November 17, 2011 at 7:04 PM

    This book is not banned. It was publishd earlier by Hind Pocket Books in 1969 in original English.

  7. Plato
    November 6, 2011 at 12:12 AM

    I remember reading this book as a freshman in college, when I received it as a prize for excelling in English. Later on, my uncle, who was, at that time, a Lt. Col. with the army, borrowed it from me & read it & told us that the book was true to the last word, for probably someone who was a part of that war, my uncle must have been right,. I have never felt absolutely any reason to disbelieve him. The politicians of India have done a lot to destroy India in more ways than one, ever since the independence of India.

  8. venki
    September 10, 2011 at 4:15 PM

    ……………. First 1 i selute those warriears who attempt there maximum in the war . neharu was a horibble PM of india he always acted like a peace ambassador. to shown himself at international level . But But Finally we have 2 know that he F*** indian soldiers. mai kabhi us kamineka chahera dekt hu to dafhan se uthake fhir se goli marne ka man kart he.

  9. madan
    August 21, 2011 at 11:17 PM

    thanks for great review.. can you plz suggest me that where can i find the uncensored version of this book..

  10. siddhartha mukherji
    July 18, 2011 at 7:35 PM

    There is a theory on strategy which states “you should not make your plans based on the enemies intentions. You should make them on the basis of the enemies capabilities” . Intentions change on the drop of a hat. Intentions can also be misrepresented. Even if Nehru believed the “Hindi Chini bhai-bhai” axiom, he should have prepared the plans on the basis of the Chinese preparations. What a painful goof up! And the then Defense Minster, Mr. Krishna Menon was just his alter ego.

    Earlier too, Mr. Nehru had stopped our advances to gain back lost territory in Kashmir; and taken the matter to the UN. Had he not done that, the controversy about Kasmir would have ended there and then. We are still paying the price for it.

    I firmly believe that Mr. Nehru was after personal fame in the international arena. Good of the country was far from his thoughts. Sorry, but that’s how I feel.

  11. Som
    June 6, 2011 at 4:38 PM

    I have read this Kannada version translated by Ravi Belegere. Planning to read english version also.
    After reading the book , i lost respect for Nehru.

    I feel every India should have this book.

    May 15, 2011 at 4:42 PM

    Am lucky among those who had read this book in kannada( not novel) at a single stretch, because I belong to karnataka. No body knows much about this war. Movies have been made on this war but they all look like joke of what happed that time. Even my father never agrees that Nehru died of VENERIAL SYPHILIS (a sexually transmitted disease) not because of war debacle( the way it has been put in public). Best way to hear the truth would be from a soldier leading from front, then why one should BAN THIS BOOK. Ample examples we get of people who fought wars of many types by shedding their blood but for for uncultured , uncivilized, currupt politicians of this BADNASEEB COUNTRY, a soldiers, for that matter any common mans life has always been very cheap. Every student, every citizen of this country should this book atlesat once in their lifetime, you will really feel PROUD OF OUR SOLDIERS, every kid wants to become a soldier to fight for this great country. What ever bad, worse to any extent, no matter how dirty the policy makers of this country behave their citizens, conduct with their soldiers, there is one real democritic institute, rather in the world, that can make things fall in order, that is “INDIAN ARMY, AND I FEEL PROUD TO SAY IT SO”

  13. cricfan
    May 4, 2011 at 6:07 PM

    On a side note, the black and white movie ‘Haqeeqat’ made soon after the war, remains to this day, one of the best war movies ever made anywhere – the final moments of that film are both chilling and tragic. The songs/ballads in that movie are out of the world. The kind-hearted Rafi has sung some of the best bhajans and patriotic songs.

  14. varsha
    May 3, 2011 at 7:27 PM

    v should be ashamed to celebrate Nehru’s birthday as children’s day

  15. surak
    March 3, 2011 at 11:17 PM

    A false statement of fact made honestly but carelessly ..evn i case f NEHARU also

  16. January 29, 2011 at 1:51 PM

    hi everyone,

    we suffered and humiliated due to our own flaws created by u me or anyone else. and still we failed to learn from past being true indians. wake up man!!! till the time u yourself will not stand to bring the alter in the comman mindset ,doom and devastation is highly expected in near future. JAI HIND jai Bharat.

  17. Muralidhara B
    January 7, 2011 at 5:02 PM

    Dear true Indians,

    I read “The Himalayan Blunder” by Mr. John P Dalvi, this is translated to Kannada by Mr. Ravi belegere sir, when i was start to read in preface ravi sir given one word “if u believe and give respect to Nehru please dont read this book and give this book to child atleast he can understand the real and true leaders of the india” it amazing quote. Dear all indians we can become an Engineer, Doctor, IAS, KAS Etc, but first we sholud become an true Indian. instead of reading usless SMS and chating some useless things please read that book.

  18. kalaivani
    November 17, 2010 at 12:41 AM

    I fully agree with pangaean that there will be a time in the near future when India will be called the south western province of China. Our leaders are least bothered aboutnthe defence of our nation. All they do is mouth so much rubbish – just listen to what our foreign secretary and foreign minister mouth when Indians are attacked in Australia, our borders are fired upon and our soldiers killed in internal duties (- think Kashmir). Neither of them have any of the assertiveness that their Pakistani counterparts have. They give the impression that they dont care what happens to the country. All they want is their position and perks and to hell with the country.
    This is the case with most politicians, all of whom are on the lookout to make a fast buck, even if it means sacrificing the soldier to shady defence deals. As long as they can get their kickbacks it doesnt matter if the guns/jets purchased are of inferior quality. After all their kids will never be out there in the front facing the enemy. They would probably holidaying in some exotic place spending their ill-gotten gains.
    A truly sad state of affairs. Is there just anyone out there who might give a thought to our poor soldiers?

  19. Naren
    November 2, 2010 at 5:25 PM

    But even after all this, Indian leaders havent learnt anything nor is the general public able to do anything. Even now there are daily reports of how china is aggresively positioning against India (their inclusion of Arunachal in their maps, regular cyber attacks on Indian sites) and the Manmohan Singh govt is in denial.

  20. October 23, 2010 at 1:01 PM

    Defence.Finance,(Home..internal security ),EducationAtomic Energy ,Communications and Law etc are Ministries requiring loads of first hand experience.These must not be distributed as lolly-pops to UPA or NDA constituents as per their (M P ) STREENGTH in the parliament We have never had a real professional to head and guide the Defence Ministry.Our chiefs except for Thimmaya have never really stood up for their commitment to the national cause but dutifully carried out the orders receivedlest raising a voice might mean sacking like what Ferddie did to Bhagwat.A constitutional ammendment is needed to safe guard the posts like Chiefs,CJI, ELECTION Commissioner ,CBI Boss etc and also a ban on these gentlemen form being offered a post for 5 years after retirement.
    Since you have to vote it is a difficult choice whether to vote for the kettle or the pot.
    Jai Hind

  21. Vivek
    October 11, 2010 at 11:36 AM

    I have the english version of the Book I have just purchased the English one. U can contact me on my E-mail, if you would like to read the book.

  22. Bimal Banerjee
    September 24, 2010 at 5:18 PM

    Dear Friends,
    It is just not one blunder, it is blunder after blunder that this Congress and its leaders have committed since independence till date ! But I do not blame them. It is the Indian masses who are to be blamed. Knowing all blunders, still they vote Congress in every election and that is what one should feel sorry for !


  23. Babu
    September 4, 2010 at 10:14 PM

    It was really painfull when India Chaina war, I was to young. At that time I was quite sure that Mr Neheru was doing some sort of blunder. It is proved by Brg. Dalvi. One thing I veleive that no one can hide tru it will definately come out. After lerning all these thing then also we will never sudhru.

  24. frankie fu
    August 22, 2010 at 2:24 PM

    hi this is frankie fu from china, i think so far i am the only chinese comments here…..
    i’ve run into this page when i am trying to find out some information about the book himalayan blunder;

    though both indian and china govt. claim that it was the other one who firstly started the war in 1962 for propoganda reasons, i still believe it is the indian govt. actually started it, i am say so no because i am a chinese, but because the information/materials i find about this war.

    it’s been half a centry after the borader conflict between our two countries, we should all be grateful for this peaceful 50 years.

    anyway, cheers, for the peace.

    P.S. i am amazed how many Indian young cares for their country and loves to find out the true history of their country, nowadays in china, most of young people dont care about the fate and history of their country, they are very much material, only cares for the money;

  25. sanjeev
    August 12, 2010 at 4:00 PM

    first i will thank to Mrs. Ravi beligare to traslate ‘HIMALAYAN BLUNDER’ to kannada. when i was reading this book my tears is get converted to blood because our soldier face many problem & dedicated there life to country mean while our politics intervensions are at lower level & they are least bother about country defence. lastly i would thank to JHON P DALAVI to write a book so that we are all know about real facts of history.

  26. Sunil Sambtani
    July 27, 2010 at 2:05 PM

    This book is a must read for all Army men and politicians who are in powerful positions in the government. This memoir should be taught in the Army curriculum and we as a Nation should take lessons from the mishaps of 1962. The worst part about this book is the political posturing of Nehru prior to the war…he actually announced in public that we shall “Throw out” the Chinese from our territory, this when our Army did not even have basic amenities like snow clothing and snow boots. We had no supply chain to these sensitive areas whilst the Chinese had well planned roads and airstrips in strategic locations along with modern ammunitions whilst our soldiers were still using the leftovers of WWII.

    I hope that the people in charge of our Army and Government read this book and realize that National security and pride are way above personal ambitions and take the right steps when the need arises, as it will soon.

  27. Indianloyalist
    July 10, 2010 at 7:15 PM

    As a professional soldier I do wish to thank Sandeep for his efforts to reawaken younger Indians about the travails of the Indian Army in 1962 but your first assumption itself is wrong. The book can be found in all libraries of the Indian Army…it may have been banned for a few weeks but I read it in 1970, from an Army library. Secondly, Sandeep if you are really into military history then improve your knowledge about the Indian Army. It will make your reviews much more readable. There are too many jarring notes which are inconsistent. It is 7th Infantry Brigade and it is Joe Lentaigne you are referring to. However, I admire you for having taken so much interest in an aspect of which most Indians have very little knowledge. What you should do is to draw parallels to the situation today. The politician bureaucrat nexus continues to keep the army down and out. Nothing has changed because of the inherent fear of these people that the Indian Army has political ambitions. If they only cared to sit down and understand their own Army things would be so different.

  28. roopa
    July 7, 2010 at 6:16 PM

    Brigadier John Dalvi has not just reveled the extreme conditions in which our brave soldiers have to fight but also political illness of this country since from our independence.Being a foreigner joe was able to sense the chainese strategy when Tibet was attacked by chaina but our politicians were in deep sleep till the nth moment . Since from 1962 to till date I don’t think that things are improved in our politics( may be still worsen compared to those days). Major sanddep unnikrishnan, ashok kamte and many more brave soldiers are the victims of new era of coward war(terrorism) and same sicked politics. I read the book again & again and cried helplessly .
    Till from 1962 to today chaina is the main threat to our country. In terms of technology chainese are so many steps ahead to us with their indigenous defense products. Hope our govt. learn something from the past and save our country from outside & inside enemies.

  29. Capt S Dhwarakhanathan (Retd)
    June 21, 2010 at 9:18 PM

    Truth is always bitter. Enemy does not break the backbone of the indian soldier its the politicians like krishna menon! Proof of 1947-48 and 1962 we have on our laps to bear even today.

  30. Capt S Dhwarakhanathan (Retd)
    June 21, 2010 at 8:51 PM

    Natraj publishers have the book!

  31. S.Ravikumar
    June 16, 2010 at 10:51 AM

    Politicians started spoiling our country right from independence, particularly congree. They are the one divided india and pakistan. Now still they are trying to divide many more for their own sack. In south, they handed over kutch to srilanka and not bothering about every day firing by Srilankan navy at our fisher men.Bhopal tragedy and safe passage for Anderson by Congress.
    Encouraged moaist all most five states non caring future sitution.

  32. sumeet bhat
    February 13, 2010 at 11:15 AM

    though we consider pandit nehru as a great patriot, but i feel otherwise.his policies on accession of princely states, kashmir, his chinese policy iffel all were blunders.

  33. m
    February 10, 2010 at 1:42 AM

    Happy to buy book and send to you. But i am not in India

  34. anup
    February 9, 2010 at 8:52 PM

    Nehru sorry for the people of Assam and the Chinese advance 50kn from Tezpur
    Nehru addressed the nation, in which he bade goodbye to Assam, saying ‘My heart goes out to the people of Assam’ is still a class act . Imagine our current PM Dr Manmohan making a similar statement today in Parliament…. his government would have to quit in no timw!

    But not Nehru, for Nehru was the PM who could do wrong. Besides, what good was Assam for India… after all Nehru WAS sorry, wasn’t he?
    Check: (i)

    Besides, Gen Kaul ( who had no battle experience) was relative… and Nehru didn’t mind keeping things in the family…. so Kaul was allowed to mess up an Army’s efforts

  35. Alok Sahai
    January 24, 2010 at 1:44 PM

    Recently I confronted a friend of mine when very assertivrly he confimed that nothing has changed relatively since 1962 Indo-China humiliating war. same way we had ill dressed and equiped army during Kargil, and hopelessly trained police on 26/11 during Mumbai terror attach.

    Shame on all of us,
    We are becoming very insensitive as a proud nation,No one backs cowards, we need to fix our own issues. Nepal moved away from us to China.
    We shall work to see that Sri Lanka, Nepal, Burma join and become part of India, to start with. We have such traditional relationship with yellow race counties, we should have very special relationship with them. We need to have compulsory defence training for everyone for two years and one month evey tow years.
    We need to be physically and mentally strong nation, we shall be able to take pride in our country, history.
    It is never late.

  36. kamal mathur
    January 8, 2010 at 10:59 PM

    It is really distressing to see that our politicians, irrespective of their party affiliations are still not at all bothered about the Chinese threat. Our forces need better firepower, better aircraft ,better warships ,better equipment . But the Government is not in a hurry to buy them.They call it procedural delays. Why are there no procedural delays when a Chief Minister wants to buy the latest aircraft for himself/herself.Why are there no procedural delays when our politicians & babus have to go abroad on holidays in the garb of study tours.Why are there no procedural delays when our Netas indulge in gimmicks to get extra votes.It’s shameful ! It’s criminal negligence.It is high time that they start thinking about the country ,it’s integrity & security.

  37. S.Ravikumar
    December 30, 2009 at 3:38 PM

    Right from elementary level to college, all the text books showing our national leaders independence struggle and how they fought to get the freedom, but such kind of failures not mentioned in the records to safe guard their names and images not cares of Nation’s interest.
    INDIRA GANDHI’S policies on security arrangement and plans to modernise the our defense system was really miracules and she was very stubborn on such issues.
    After Indira Gandhi, no one else took a serious view on neighbour countries attitudes and their movements, since every one busy detaining their posts and fighting each other with in the parties, between the parties, between the religionity,casts, languages, water sharing issues and no one party having common goal on national security.

    Ministers busy swalloing public money for their inevsestment in elections.
    Even some higher defence officials and judges involving in money & land scam.
    Police officials busy hunting of females like Ruchika and some of the political leaders escorting them.
    Even public, them selves not united and care about nation, busy fighting to own a sepaerate states,districs,taluks and even at our home itself not united.

    Slowly all the party leaders bringing their kin and kith to their posts. In the name of democarcy, imperialism ruling our nation.
    Its not too late, still every one, particulalry politicians should care about our nation’s security interest rather than their own interest.
    But still, we advertise that we are living together and we are united.
    Let us see each other freindly manner and trust each other.We Indians are hard workers and intelligent in all the feilds but still lacking in unity. If we are through in this particular issue, no one can think to shake our precious nation.

  38. jagan
    October 18, 2009 at 11:09 PM

    it is so upsetting to read even a few excerpts. we can all get upset and be bitter on individuals. as an Indian we should be able to stand on our own two feet. as long as the politicians are only interested in looking after their own interests but not the national interests, I don’t think that there is going to be much change. if we look at our neighbours with better organised military it is unavoidable to note the different form of government. I begin to wonder if we deserve democracy

  39. September 30, 2009 at 5:23 PM

    I personally feel after reading the book that if Indian Army or Indian Govt. had a task force to implement “What went wrong” and points raised in the book, then Indian ARMY can face any chinease threat.

  40. Prashant
    September 23, 2009 at 3:35 PM

    This shows clearly how nehru and its congress want to hide the truth.
    1962 was a shame on INDIA but still we are able to learn lessons, we simly like to hide the truth.

    Could not imagine how a PM could be so cowards ?
    “A single blade of grass does not grow there” so…
    Thats the importance given to the national security by nehru.
    Basically he was fool.. when one of army’s senior officer was talking to him about modernization of army he replied “Who is going to attck us ? “.

    My god can you all imagine.. he was thinking himself as a world leader and a nobel prize winner for world peace .

    Now we could understand why jinnah, patel and so many leaders were not willing to make him as PM of independent INDIA.

  41. abhishek
    September 19, 2009 at 2:28 AM

    hey this book is not truly banned,i am reading its original english version by natraj publishers dehradun.

  42. Raghu,
    September 17, 2009 at 10:15 AM


    I read all you peoples comments and thanks for sandeep to translating it, It was an eye opening for me,
    but i wonder being in a democratic country how can they ban a book, its like banning freedom of speech.

  43. MAX
    September 16, 2009 at 6:22 PM

    I just love these sentences:

    “Dalvi recounts a chilling precursor to 1962. During his days in the Wellington Defence Services Staff College in 1950, he quotes a colleague and army veteran, Joe of British origin: Friends, leaders of your country have no foresight. They are mum about the Chinese invasion of Tibet. They don’t understand the reality that India’s backdoor has been broken down…. Boys! Take it from me. Some of you folks sitting here will fight with the Chinese army before you retire.”

    How freaking dumb our politicians are… we’re peace loving people that’s OK! But we shouldn’t forget Shivaji Maharaj, Samrat Ashoka, Tipu Sultan, Rana Pratap, Netaji S C Bose were also children of their peace loving motherland, India.

  44. MAX
    September 16, 2009 at 6:13 PM

    Hey Vishal,

    I think our soldiers’ are still living in 1962 era, ill-equipped and least infrastructure made in border areas; our army men use mule to transport food, ammunition etc. even in 2009 almost after 50 years of fist sino-indian war.

    It proves that our Congress led govt. did not take any lesson from 1962’s massacre and so Foreign Minister says sino-indian border in world’s most peaceful border in this whole world. What a pity!

    IAF’s #20 wing operational in north-east region uses Mig-21 (flying coffin) where their Chinese counterpart has AIDC F-CK-1 a 5th generation fighter aircraft product of China’s indigenous fighter project. Our Tejas LCA a 4.5 generation aircraft which is proposed to be replacement of Mig-21 still in paper. Did you see Chinese ammunition and PLA’s war accessories during joint exercise with Indian Army? I believe those were just glimpse of Chinese dragon power.

  45. Vishal Raina
    September 16, 2009 at 2:05 PM

    India should Retaliate to chinese incursions if they come inside to our border indian Army shuld warn them and if possible capture or Kill them then and there ,” Indian Politicians Playing with the Dignity of the Country”

  46. Deepak
    September 10, 2009 at 10:33 AM
  47. Pavan
    September 7, 2009 at 1:56 PM

    Very appropriate review.

    The book seems to be available on flipkart now for Rs. 395/- Hope to buy it soon.

  48. Jim
    September 1, 2009 at 1:40 PM

    I thing the recent border crossing of chinese choppers mean something to think about.Some kinda provokes!!

  49. sid
    September 1, 2009 at 10:54 AM

    yes Arun….you are right….we have a similar shameless leadership even today….Pakistanis attack us and we look towards others, like beggars,for taking action….why should any other country take action on our behalf…..our country has been made so helpless by these politicians that it can not act on its own….shame!….everybody inside the country knows clearly that these naxalites are being driven by China….and these politicians keep mum about all this and never take any strong action against these terrorists…why?…perhaps because they always think of their vote bank, not about their country,their motherland..

  50. August 31, 2009 at 5:21 PM

    Are we still prepared to handle a similar situation again…. may be projected in 2012….

    I don’t feel so but we have to do some brainstorming about it….

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