‘Nimbu Saab’: The story of a Kargil hero who should be better known

A testament to the power of dreams and the strength found in the face of adversity

GN Bureau | June 27, 2024


#Kargil War   #Armed Forces   #Defence  


Nimbu Saab: The Barefoot Naga Kargil Hero
By Neha Dwivedi and Diksha Dwivedi with Neingutoulie Kengurüse
HarperCollins, 256 pages, Rs 299

Twenty-five years ago, the nation was locked in a bloody conflict. Among the many daredevils who shaped the course of Kargil War, leading to India’s victory, was Captain Neikezhakuo Kengurüse. Affectionately known as ‘Nimbu Saab’, the twenty-five-year-old led his men barefoot into combat in temperatures of -10 degrees Celsius. He, however, is not as well known as he should be.

Now, Neha and Diksha Dwivedi, daughters of a Kargil War hero themselves, have teamed up with Kengurüse’s brother, Neingutoulie, to tell the remarkable story of “Nimbu Saab: The Barefoot Naga Kargil Hero”. It is a testament to the power of dreams and the strength found in the face of adversity.

'Nimbu Saab’ is the story of Neibu, not just as a soldier, but as a symbol of relentless courage and the enduring spirit of the Naga people.

Captain Neikezhakuo Kengurüse belonged to the second battalion of the Rajputana Rifles, which played a crucial role in defending Point 4590—an operation during which it lost twenty-three soldiers, including him. He was posthumously awarded the country’s second highest gallantry award, the Mahavir Chakra.

As this book notes, “For Nagas, at the heart of the debate is their quest for a sense of belonging, a deep human yearning, akin to the roots of a tree seeking nourishment. It’s not merely about being physically present in space but finding resonance in the intangible—in collective memory, cultural rituals and a silent understanding among people. In Nagaland, this quest is palpable in the way its local communities bond over folklore, shared struggles and collective triumphs—just some of the things Nagas don’t have in common with mainland India.”

Among the authors, Neha Dwivedi is the author of ‘The Lone Wolf: The Untold Story of the Rescue of Sheikh Hasina’ (2021) and ‘Vijyant at Kargil: The Biography of a War Hero’ (2020). She aims to continue working towards bringing forth the stories of heroes like her father for she believes that they all deserve to be heard. Diksha Dwivedi is the author of ‘Letters from Kargil’ (2017).

They write, “As daughters of a Kargil martyr, Maj. C.B. Dwivedi, posthumous Sena Medal recipient,we have made sincere efforts to bring the story of another hero from the same war to light, with as much authenticity as we could for it is as much our responsibility as it is our privilege to be in the position to do so.”
 

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