From Gun To Pen: Should This Be The Way To Retired Army Officers In India?

Posted on June 9, 2012 in Alternative Careers

By Anubhav Das:

Every kid in India at some point in his life surely dreams of a career in this field irrespective of his interests and aims in life. A field that has been the favorites of all the careers since ages, probably not because of the perks or any glittering emoluments it offers but because of the lifestyle it renders, uniqueness it brings to the personality of those who pursue it and above all because of the prestige it brings to the social status of those who choose it as their life. This field is nothing but a life in Indian Army. Some call it a career whereas others call it a passion well pursued with apt intelligence and die-hard attitude.

The Indian Army today harbors a pool of talent that cannot be possibly outdone by any other profession; many officers of Indian Army after serving their terms in the respective battalions are appointed on special duties to lead other commissions at national level and classified government activities at administrative levels. Some of them also join corporates and because of their bright past record, they are usually asked to render service at executive levels. This raises a serious question to the educational framework of our country and that is-If Army officers are capable of serving the country in many ways even after retiring from the Army, then why shouldn’t they be appointed as teaching faculty of higher institutions? To start with the Indian Army requires a sound academic background to get in to; the cadets then are given the knowledge in various subjects by the best of faculties. Together with a practical approach that beats that of any other fields, an Army Officer is well equipped to teach at any other educational institute as a faculty by the time he completes his service in the Army. An Army Officer is perceived to be a gifted administrator which also fits him in the frame of a managerial post. Given the scenario today, in which all the major institutes in the country are suffering from a severe crunch with the issues of quality faculty, this can sure come to our rescue. Now, the question arises is that even after knowing and realizing the fact that an Army Personnel possesses a sound background that qualifies him to serve as a faculty in institutions, why is it not implemented in our system. Well the answers can be contemplated, some of us believe that an Army Officer is made for the Army and cannot fit in the social structure of a common man, others argue that even if he fits, he cannot be considered eligible to teach as he is only talented enough to lead a battalion of army men and not a class of youngsters and thus, an issue as sensitive as education cannot be compromised. Well, to me this thought seems pretty absurd and even ridiculous.

An Army officer is trained to adapt the social conditions in any environment and is far better adaptive than any of us. Moreover, it is of no discretion of ours that to give a verdict on who can be a part of our social structure and who cannot. It is only because of our lack of reasoning and thinking power that we cannot foresee the advantages it would bring to our educational system. Colleges talk about a diversity in the student’s pool, well how about a diversity in the faculty’s pool. To start with, if not on a permanent basis, some of the retired officers can be appointed as guest faculties in some of the institutions and the results can be evaluated. The idea is no doubt fantastic and pretty easy to execute also provided our political system recognizes it with clear and fair intentions.

Till now, we’ve seen an Army Officer serve this country only on the borders with a gun in his hand, just think what can he do with the young minds of the country in a classroom with a pen in his hand.