Blind veteran of 1965 war continues 45-year-long fight for promised landhttps://indianexpress.com/article/cities/chandigarh/blind-veteran-of-1965-war-continues-45yearlong-fight-for-promised-land/

Blind veteran of 1965 war continues 45-year-long fight for promised land

Having lost his eyes in the 1965 Indo-Pak war,hero Kaka Singh,75 years old,is now battling against his own government.

Having lost his eyes in the 1965 Indo-Pak war,hero Kaka Singh,75 years old,is now battling against his own government.

Kaka Singh joined the army in 1954 as a sepoy and fought the 1965 Indo-Pak war in the Khem Karan sector. He suffered injuries and lost both his eyes in a mine blast. He was admitted to Army Hospital,Dehradun,where the doctors declared him 100% visually impaired.

Recalling the incident,he said,“Some senior army officials,including Col Siri Ram,Welfare Officer,Central Command,Lucknow and others visited me at the Army Hospital and assured me of many things.”

“The senior army officials recommended to the Punjab government through the Deputy Commissioner,Ropar to give me about 30 acres of land,a grant of Rs one lakh in cash,Rs 1,000 per month for maintenance of the family and one house for living. But the Punjab government has till date not kept its promise,” he rued.

Kaka Singh has left no stone unturned and has met almost every senior authority in the state,but to no avail.

“From Indira Gandhi to CM Parkash Singh Badal,I have met everyone but nobody has helped me. They only sympathised with me and made false promises,” Singh lamented.

“I lost my eyes while fighting for the nation,but what has the nation given me in return? I am blind and old,my age does not allow me to go from pillar to post to fight for my rights. I have no faith left in the system. This is what a nation offers to its Jawans? It is highly regrettable that a soldier has to shoulder such agony for serving his nation,” Singh further said.

Singh had approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 1995 after which the High Court had directed Punjab to honour its promise. Kaka Singh later approached the High Court in 2008 as the state did not comply with the High Court order.

The Punjab state government,in its reply,said that it has allotted 10 acres of land in village Sowara at a concessional of Rs 430 per acre. However,Kaka Singh alleges that the land was bought by him and not gifted by the state.

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The Punjab and Haryana High Court in its judgment,in 2008,had ruled,“It is desired that the Punjab state should honour its commitment to an Army personnel,who has suffered injuries and lost both his eyes in a bomb blast,while defending the country.”