The Welham Boys' School, Dehradun will host the 3rd edition of the annual Military History
Seminar on the 4th - 5th of October 2019. Having taken the initiative to expose their students to
India's post-Independent history on a regular basis almost three years ago, Welham Boys' has
been inviting students across the country to also share in the experience and expand their own
horizons. Last year, syndicates comprising a team of five students from a record 39 schools from
across India participated in the 2nd Military History Seminar. 'The Welham Initiative is a well-
deserved sobriquet. For a School to take it upon themselves and conduct this event on an annual
basis speaks volumes for its commitment towards nation building. You have some of the most
sought after people who are among the resource people interacting with students and the take
away for participating Schools is indeed most remarkable,' said KVK Murthy, who had made a
presentation on the complex geo-politics of Central Asia last year.
In this year’s edition, the Chief Guest is Air Marshal K C Cariappa, the son of India's first Army
Chief who himself did his formative years at Welham Boys' before moving to Lawrence School,
Sanawar. Later, having joined the IAF, Nanda while flying a Hawker Hunter during the 1965 Indo-
Pak War, ejected over enemy territory and was then a Prisoner of War. Gield Marshal Ayub
Khan, the President of Pakistan famously sent General (later, Field Marshal) Cariappa a message
saying he needn't worry, his Son would be looked after. General Cariappa promptly replied that
all Indian POWs with Pakistan were his Sons and he expected Ayub Khan to look after all of them.
Taking the inspiration from Field Marshal Cariappa's response, the opening talk show focuses on
“Ethics and Leadership”. The opening segment will be anchored by the highly acclaimed author
who has done yeoman work in the field of military history, Shiv Kunal Verma. The other
participants in the discussion, along with Air Marshal Cariappa, will be Mr. Darshan Singh,
Chairman, Welham Boys' School, former air chief , Air Chief Marshal AY Tipnis and Colonel Vivek
Sharma, the present commandant of RIMC.
It is a unique opportunity where resource people who are stalwarts, will all come together to
share their experience and ideas with our students – the future generation. Dr. Bindra pledges
her commitment to the nation by asserting that “Each edition of the Military History Seminar
gives an opportunity to set higher benchmarks by delving in topics of acute concern, celebrating
real life heroes and promoting informed citizenry”.
Lt General Rakesh Loomba along with Grp Captain Johnson Chacko, a former MiG 25 pilot, and
Wing Commander Rajesh Khosla, who specializes in photo interpretation, will discuss the
importance of Military Intelligence.
Artists from various schools will use their medium to put their message across while an
innovative slogan writing contest will also be held. Under the tutelage of Shibani Arora, the WBS
music teams are planning renditions that will further enhance the experience of student
Lt General KJ Singh, former Western Army Commander, will make a presentation on three
Indians who fought Aurangzeb at the same time - Shivaji, Lachit Bhorphukan and Guru Govind
Singh - before aiding the Government of the Day in a Parliamentary Debate on an Integrated
Command system for the future. The Opposition will be guided in its counter by a top cop from
Kerala, Mr. Sudesh Kumar, who has specialized in Coastal Security post the 2008 Mumbai
One of the biggest names in conservation, Bittu Sahgal (Publisher of Sanctuary Asia and the man
responsible for 'kids for tigers' movement, will be talking about the Armed Forces and
Conservation, reiterating that the threat to the country from within is perhaps just as dangerous
than any external threat.
Lt General Mohinder Puri, who played a key role during the Kargil War, will introduce a film on
Kashmir - Baramula to Kargil – that gives an idea of the existing ground situation in the Valley.
Another presentation, on the Pt 5700 Battle by Gen KH Singh, that was fought in the Turtuk
Sector in 1999, will also be held.
It has been an Education for all of us. There is no doubt in my mind that the younger generation is indeed more than ready to be exposed to critical subjects like Military History which unfortunately does not from a part of our present curriculum. French Children know their own French Military History, similarly for the Germans, English and American Children, and so on; so why is it that Indian Children do not know of our Military History? Hopefully the day is not far when it will be an integral part of our Educational System; says Darshan Singh, the person who is behind the movement.
Air Chief Marshal AY Tipnis will preside over the closing ceremony on October 5