A malicious campaign has been launched against pistol shooting coach Jaspal Rana by an official of the National Rifle Association of India which has set the cat among the pigeons.Mail Today has learnt at the general body meeting of the NRAI held three weeks ago, an overenthusiastic official had said, “Jaspal has been speaking too much to the media and needs to tender an unconditional apology.”Jaspal was in Buenos Aires recently with the Youth Olympics team and returned to India on Sunday. Peeved with this behaviour of an official, Jaspal avoided the felicitation functions in the capital and has said he is willing to quit.As one who has played a huge role in shaping the careers of Manu Bhaker, Saurabh Chaudhary and to a large extent Anish Bhanwala, Jaspal had been fact recommended for the Dronacharya Award by the NRAI after the Asian Games.It’s no secret Jaspal has spoken to sections of the media but in no way tried to touch on controversies. Why an official in the NRAI has targeted him is not clear but it’s about time president Raninder Singh cleared the air.At a time when India have done well in the Commonwealth Games, Asian Games, and the Youth Olympics, some of the good coaches across various sport have come in for praise from federations and sports ministry. Some coaches who had bad experiences ran away because of differences over conditions or payments.Back to Jaspal, he has stayed clear from conflict over junior vs senior. He has not minded it even when some of the youngsters he has groomed were asked to be part of the national camp under the foreign coach.advertisementAt a time when the Indian shooters are preparing for the Asian air championship in Kuwait next month, why the NRAI has encouraged someone to indulge in the smear campaign is not clear. Officially, there is no gag order on the coaches or the shooters. They have been using social media also quite judiciously.
Leh: All of 48 years and maybe more, the ‘Jarpal Queen’, a symbol of India’s triumph against Pakistan, travels through the length and breadth of India as a ‘war trophy’ of the Indian Army.The ‘Queen’, named after Jarpal in Pakistan, is actually royalty on four wheels, a Willys jeep, sleek, shiny and in shipshape condition, the object of lavish attention at the 3 Grenadier Regiment’s camp, about 40 km from Leh. The vehicle, with Urdu script on its sides, is a “war trophy” captured from Pakistan during the 1971 conflict. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’Once fitted with a recoilless gun, this US-origin jeep now travels across India as a prized possession of the Regiment, which has ensured the almost 50-year-old vehicle moves like a well-oiled machine. “We captured it during the Jarpal war and it was used by the Pakistani army as a part of their attack plan at Shakargarh border, in Jarpal area of Pakistan. So, it was named Jarpal Queen. From that war, India has two Param Vir Chakra medals,” said Colonel (retd) J S Dhillon. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&KThe two Param Vir Chakra awardees were Colonel Hoshiar Singh from the Grenadier Regiment and Second Lieutenant Arun Khetrapal from the Armoured Regiment. “It is a ‘war trophy’ and was shown to VIP guests and was also used during guard of honour for senior officers. It is in great condition and runs very smoothly,” said Dhillon, a Sena Medal recipient who was commissioned in the 3 Grenadier Regiment in 1982 and now heads the Indian Institute of Skiing and Mountaineering, Gulmarg, under the Ministry of Tourism. He said the ‘Jarpal Queen’ had gone wherever the Regiment has been stationed. Jaipur, Kupwara, Simla, Poonch, Meerut, Ferozepur… the list is long. In 1988, when the Regiment was in Ferozpur in Punjab, the jeep was registered with the Punjab transport department for it to be driven on the road. “We took a number, insured and registered it. As far as I can recall, except the regiment’s UN mission to Eithopia, the jeep has gone everywhere with them,” said Dhillon. The jeep has also been witness to numerous border skirmishes with the neighbouring country, particularly during the regiment’s stints in Jammu and Kashmir. A full-scale war broke out between India and Pakistan over East Pakistan in 1971. It ended with surrender of 90,000 Pakistani troops and led to the creation of Bangladesh. PTI
APTN National NewsThousands of people were on hand this weekend to witness a milestone moment in Metis history as the legendary Bell of Batoche returned to Metis hands.Last week, we brought you exclusive details about how the bell was found and the negotiations for its return.APTN’s Ntawnis Piapot was in Batoche, Sask., for the historic celebrations as the bell was welcomed home.