Daijiworld Medi Network
Mumbai, Mar 2: Rudyard Kipling had once said “God could not be everywhere and therefore he created mothers”. Anuradha Gore, a teacher by profession, is a heroic mother who in her pursuit to keep the promise given to her late son Captain Vinayak Gore, has played the motherly role in the real sense to hundreds of Vinayaks by inspiring them to join the army. She had lost her only son Vinayak in 1995 while serving as a captain in the army when the enemy bullets pierced his young body at the peak of his youth at 26 years. To witness the death of her grown up child can be the greatest tragedy for any parents. For Anuradha coping with the tragedy of her son’s untimely death was not easy and she grieved over the loss of her son but only in private, as promised to her son. For a few months she caged herself inside her home and was depressed. She had lost interest in life as after her son’s death she was enveloped with a feeling of sadness.
It was only the promise Anuradha Gore had given to her young son when he decided to join the army that brought her out of the enclosure of her home a few months after the death of her son. When his classmates and friends pursued either engineering or medicine Vinayak responded to his inner calling to join the army and his family supported his decision. In fact his family comprising his parents and sister living in Vile Parle in Mumbai had celebrated Vinayak joining the army in 1991 and graduating as an officer from IMA. He was posted in Kashmir at a time when insurgency in Kashmir was at its peak. In September 1995 while captaining the 31st Medium Artillery Regiment that was posted near the border at Kupwara in Jammu he was killed by the bullets of the militants.
Call it intuition or mere coincidence, Vinayak who was quite different from children of his age had asked a favor or promise from his mother after his decision to join the armed forces. “Promise me you will not cry in public if something untoward happens. Always remember you are the mother of an army captain”, he told her and she responded positively. She had promised then not realizing that it would become a reality. But it did. In the last 18 years since his death it is this promise that reverberates in the mind of 65 year of Anuradha Gore and it is this promise that brought her out of the coop she had found herself in following the death of her son.
All these years Anuradha has found hundreds of Vinayaks who were eager to carry on the unfinished task of Vinayak Gore. In the last 18 years since his death this retired principal of a school has done more than fulfilling the promise she made to her son.
Curiously, all she needed was a spark to realize the responsibility she had on her frail shoulders and that spark came in the form of a phone call from the principal of the school where she was teaching. The school principal convinced her saying “there are many Vinayaks who are waiting for a word of inspiration to join the army and serve the country”. That phone call came at a time when Anuradha was eager to do something in return to people who stood by her side at a time when she wanted them the most. She first stepped out of the house to give a talk at a school on Martyr’s day. As promised she did not shed tears in public. Rather she spoke about the bravery of our soldiers including her son’s and goaded youngsters to serve the nation by joining the armed forces. From then on there was no stopping Anuradha Gore. She has visited hundreds of schools since then, delivered talks to eager students and has motivated hundreds of students to join the army.
She has not just fulfilled the promise she has made to her son not to shed tears in public but has done more by encouraging youngsters to join the army through her talks, columns, newspaper articles and books. It was during one of her routine inspirational lectures author Dinkar Gangal approached and asked Anuradha Gore to pen her thoughts so that they don’t just melt in the air but will be useful by reaching to a wider section of the society and also for posterity. She took his sanguine advice and that resulted in her first book in Marati “Waras hovu Abhimanyache” published in 2009. The book which was later translated into English touched many individuals especially the loved ones of those who had lost their kith and kin in the army to enemy bullets. She has written several books in Marathi including a book on Siachin known as the highest battleground in the world and the difficult circumstances under which Indian soldiers are guarding the country at Siachen.
Anuradha Gore is also busy conducting workshops for children during school vacations on personality development, leadership skills in addition to giving an insight to youngsters about the opportunities in the Indian armed forces and the challenges faced by our soldiers. Her workshops are woven around the heroic acts of Indian soldiers and leaders who laid their lives fighting. This busy schedule has helped her overcome the vicissitudes of life though the memory of her brave son who laid his life for the country is always fresh in her mind.
Despite going through the pain Anuradha never regretted the family decision to support Vinayak Gore when he wanted to join the army. Her stoic persona speaks volumes of a valiant mother who has put behind her own pain to enthuse more youngsters to take up the responsibility of serving the nation. Every time she gives a talk or visits a school she re-lives the promise she made to her son who had shown maturity beyond his age when he asked her that favor in the form of a promise. The only solace for her is that she feels proud of being Vinayak’s mother and that is like a soothing balm on her nerves. Let us salute the selfless maternal sacrifice of Anuradha Gore and her noble mission and the sacrifice of many other brave women like her.
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