KILOMETERS of ice, blinding whiteness as far as eyes can see, the human beings, the soldiers at the mercy and lap of the great Himalayan ranges, that’s Siachen. A recent book ‘The Long Road to Siachen, the Question Why’ captures the story of the high altitude battlefield.
Frame by frame the story of the terrain is captured and narrated by Kunal Verma and Rajiv Williams. Heavily illustrated with hi-resolution photographs, the book tells the story of Siachen, right from the origins of the conflict to the present. The topography, the location and the beauty of the region come vivid through the photographs, shot both aerially and from ground.
Though thick with pictures, the book cannot be classified as a coffee table version, as the writing is also rich. The struggle that the defence personnel undergo to protect this region from enemy poaching fills one’s heart with pride. The reason for losing some part of the region to our neighbours, especially China is the short sightedness of the political leadership. This becomes obvious from the narration. The book offers a comprehensive package on Siachen, with the text complemented by photographs.
Verma is a filmmaker and writer and has been associated with the Armed Forces for over two decades. Williams is an army man, and was company commander in 8 Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry.