India is proud of its armed forces. It has proved its mettle on every battlefield, be it during conflicts with Pakistan and China or during peace-keeping operations in Sri Lanka and Congo among others.
Many have laid down their lives to protect the sovereignty of the nation. But have we repaid them adequately? Former Army chief V P Malik laments that inadequate support from the government has resulted in families of fallen war heroes feeling alienated.
"I feel that martyrs of wars and those who sacrificed their lives in proxy wars are not being given their due respect," says Malik, who was the Army chief during the 1999 Kargil war.
The fact that the annual remembrance services in honour of the Kargil martyrs were organised mostly by the families and social organisations instead of government proves his point. In contrast, Malik cites US government's unstinted support to the families of American soldiers who died in recent conflicts in Iraq.
Should the Indian government be more pro-active about helping the fallen war heroes families? What should the government do? Tell us.