OUR HEROES | Service continues beyond duty
BRIGADIER CHANDRA Prakash Soni was born on November 8, 1941 in Ichchavar village of Sehore district. He completed his MBBS from Gandhi Medical College, Bhopal in 1965 and then joined the compulsory Internship. While he was half way through his internship, the Government of Madhya Pradesh wanted doctors to join the Army Medical Corps (AMC) from its quota during the National Emergency.
War clouds were looming over the country and he immediately volunteered to join the Indian Army with four of his friends. They were called for training at AMC Centre (South) at Hyderabad as Lieutenants. He was commissioned on November 22, 1965 and his first posting was at Military Hospital, Dehra Dun.
Brigadier Soni commanded a field ambulance in Jammu and Kashmir which was always in operation in terrorist infested areas since its inception. His unit provided round the clock medical backup to soldiers as well as civilians injured in terrorist attacks or otherwise.
He also served in the prestigious Staff College at Wellington, Infantry School Mhow and AMC Centre and School Lucknow. He has had a tenure at the Army Hospital (Research and Referral) at Delhi Cantonment, which is one of the best hospitals in the country and is entrusted with the duty to provide medical care for the President of India.
His last posting was as DDMS 21 Corps. During the Kargil War he was posted at Command Headquarters which had been planning the whole operation. All his recommendations were immediately accepted by the Government of India. Casualties were coming day and night and his staff worked round the clock to save lives. There were as many as 1,500 casualties out of which they could save almost 75 per cent.
He has been awarded the Army Commanders Commendation Card from the Army Commander Southern Command as well as Northern Command. An explorer by heart Brigadier Soni was the first Army Officer to have scaled the Mount Everest with Tenzing Norgay way back in the sixties.
These days he is associated with the Purva Sainik Sena Parishad and the Sanskritik Gaurav Sansthan where young children are taught Sanskrit. His message to the youth is to come forward and join the services as it has the best career any organisation can offer. He feels the Indian Army is the finest in the world and is professionally very competent.
To the Indian Government he says that serving in the Army should be made compulsory for few years like in many other countries. We wish Brigadier Soni and his family all the very best in life.
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