Yet, another amazing Indian story from me. This one is about a FOUR LEGGED SOLDIER who defied death. Who was he?
Your love and affection motivate me all the time so I cannot stop write and share unknown Indian stories with you. I love you all.
Amazing Indian story of Pedongi
Pedongi, who is this Pedongi, you might be asking.
Pedongi was an Indian Army veteran who not only served his employers well, he also did something unthinkable.
He came back from the enemy lines stealing their ammunition.
Was Pedongi a soldier?
Yes. A different kind of a soldier.
He was a mule.
Pedongi joined the Indian Army in the brutal year of 1962; the year when India lost a war with China along its northern borders.
The job of this mule was to transport equipment from the base to the forward areas. Trucks and other motorized vehicles, sometimes, are unable to negotiate tricky mountain roads and ledges.In such areas, where the path is sometimes a few meters narrow, mules are the best options.
They are nimble footed and balance themselves really well.
Hoof Number 15328
Actually, when this bay mule joined the Army, he was given a hoof number -15328. Mules were and still are not given any names, generally.
But, Pedongi was an exception and he had to wait several years before getting this name.
Hoof Number 15328 was just 4 years old when he joined the Indian Army. But, neither he nor anyone else could guess that the mule was going to create an amazing Indian story.
Bullets flying past
It was in the 1971 war, that Hoof Number 15328 showed his bravery.
In that war, he, like the other soldiers, was always in the thick of the action- transporting supplies, bringing back wounded soldiers and doing other selfless and brave acts.
Hoof Number 15328 was always ready for action. And action was also ready for him.
One day, during the war, he was kidnapped by the enemy soldiers and taken to their camp. He was a part of an army transport column that was ambushed by the enemy.
Everybody, this side of the border thought that the mule was gone and will never be found.
Days passed. The mule’s handlers had given up on their favorite soldier. They thought that either he had been kidnapped or was killed in the crossfire. Most probably, kidnapped.
One day, during the war, the animal’s handlers were astonished to see 15328 amble into their camp.
The ‘soldier’ looked fine and healthy- albeit tired- but was carrying a load. What load was that?
On checking it, the mule’s handlers found out that 15328 was carrying a box of enemy ammunition!
Oh boy, that was such a touching moment! Not only had the mule survived all those bullets and bombs, he had also stolen some ammunition from the enemy too!
That was indeed a WoW moment for Hoof Number 15328.
His Commanding Officer was touched by his bravery and recommended to his seniors that 15328 be honored in some way.
No more a number now!
The senior officers of the Army promptly agreed with the Commanding Officer.
A few days later, Hoof Number 15328 had a new official name- Pedongi. He also got an award for his brave and selfless service.
My dear readers, it is extremely rare for mules and mares in the Indian Army to have names. This privilege is reserved for horses.
But Pedongi was an exception and that is why he created this amazing Indian story.
A long inning
Pedongi worked like a horse in the Indian Army. He was always cheerful and ready to undertake any work assigned to him.
One day, in 1987, an Army Major spotted Pedongi working diligently in a camp. When he found out that Pedongi had been working for 25 years, he was impressed. Mules, normally, work for no more than 15-18 years.
To recognize the long and illustrious service, Pedongi was awarded a blue velvet dress, which is a distinguished honor.
His picture was also put on the Greeting Cards of his Army unit. Such was the love and affection of his fellow soldiers for Pedongi.
Pedongi worked for the Indian Army till 1992. After his retirement, he was given pension and later given a big field to roam around and graze.
Hoof Number 15328 finally said goodbye to this planet in 1998.
To remember his service, the Indian Army authorities have named one of the lounges in their headquarter after him.
What an amazing Indian story of a mule who was bravest of the brave!
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