Kookanda N Ponnappa
Naik Kookanda N Ponnappa (Mani) gallant Kodava Army soldier who made the supreme sacrifice serving our country. He fought during the Indo – Pak war in 1965 when he was just 25yrs of age.
Author of this article
- 22 September 1965
Kookanda K Nanjappa
Just a day before the ceasefire was announced during the 1965 Indo-Pak war a gallant young soldier aged just 25 years made the supreme sacrifice serving his country. He had an attitude that could make any soldier proud, love and care that could make any parents want a son like him.
Unlike our politicians think, he did not get into army because he did not have enough to eat. He came from a well to do family, the only reason he joined the force was to serve the nation.
After finishing his basic education he joined the army at a tender age of 18 and entered the conflict zone soon after finishing his training at Wellington. Be it the conflict in Nagaland, the Sino-Indian War of 62 and Indo-Pak war of 65, he saw it all, first hand.
During the Sino-Indian was he was thought to have been martyred since he was not traceable for over a month, however the brave soldier had lost his way in the borders and had survived fighting the enemy and hunger. Such hostility did not deter this young soldier. He was again back in action in the 65 war. It was just a day before the ceasefire was announced he was martyred in the battlefield.
It is said that his company was asked to seek refuge in the bunker expecting enemy shelling, however this young warrior who led his life in his own terms did not want to seek refuge in a bunker, but wanted to be out, he was hit by a enemy shell and was injured, he breathed his last breath on the way to hospital somewhere near the Indo-Pak border on 22nd September’1965.
Few tigers are not meant to be caged, they live their life in their own terms. They strictly follow the principle that says “Its better live like a tiger for a day then live like a sheep for hundred years”.
We should be glad that these days due to social media and competitive mainstream media our soldiers are getting recognized. However there are lot many brave soldiers like Ponnappa who have vanished from our memory since there was no social media during their era. Let’s try to identify and give them the respect and recognition they deserve. Let’s not forget the martyrs!!
- Fought the Sino – Indian war
- Fought the Indo-Pak War in 1965 at the age of 25.