Monday, June 29, 2009

Come R-Day, these boys will slither down flying chopper

This story idea was given to me by my good friend in Bhopal Ritu Raj Mate, who was training these NCC cadets in slithering down from great heights as part of their preparations to use these practice jumps from a chopper at the 2003 Republic Day Parade at New Delhi. Four NCC Cadets were hand picked to do this dangerous but yet fun jump from a flying chopper in front of our President of India and The Prime Minister of India. Ritu Raj Mate who was himself a disciplined cadet during his younger days was given the charge to give them the basic training to get the scare of height from their minds first. When he invited me two weeks of the cadets onward journey to practice on their real jumps from a flying chopper, it was exciting and also great to have a word with the future defense personals. I thank Ritu again for giving me another wonderful story.

Every morning four boys can be spotted climbing down the rope from a high tension wire pole at Bhadbhada dam like an agile monkey. No, neither the boys are into some kind of monkey business nor practicing any rope trick, so to say. They are the four talented National Cadet Core (NCC) corps selected to slither down the rope from a moving helicopter at the Republic Day Parade in the National capital. The boys – Ravinder Rajput, Anup Karmakar, Phool Singh Netam and Sheshnaryan Namdev look pretty excited about the practice. That is of course, understandable. For, among the audience to watch their well-practiced feat will be the President of India A P J Abdul Kalam, the Vice President, Bhairon Singh Shekhawat and the Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
If the boys are excited their trainers and supervisors are no less so. Entire NCC Directorate for Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh is keenly looking forward to the R-day.
The four boys are put to a rigrous drill every morning by the commandant Brigadier Das Gupta (deputy DG MP & Chhattisgarh), Colonel R R Gadkary, Subedar D S Chouhan, Havildar H M Data Ram and Ex- NCC cadet Ritu Raj Mate.
Colonel R R Gadkary informed that this would be for the first time that the cadets would Para drop with rope from a helicopter. “It is going to be an excellent one.”
The contingent is leaving for New Delhi on December 29 where another 25 days will be more crucial training period for the boys.
The will start actual practice of slithering down the rope from a helicopter.
Ritu Raj Mate says that when he was a cadet he had had training in all sorts of adventure sports. He feels that the early training has stood him in good stead now that he is imparting training to these boys.

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