Aha! So, Indian barber shops are full! Everybody, I hear with even a whiff of a moustache is trying to shape it downwards like Abhinandan’s whiskers! And mummy’s eyebrow pencil’s disappeared as those without, use hers to get the Abhi look.

“Look at me!” they say, strolling away from hairdresser’s razor, “I’m a brave heart too!”

Oh no, you ain’t my friend. It’s not just the moustache that made him a hero in a land bereft of men of courage and valour!

There’s more to the Wing-Commander, just hear me out dear muchy-wallahs!

His was not to complain when all he was equipped with was a fifty-year old MIG 21; an aircraft labelled a ‘flying coffin’ for all the deaths it’s caused. What a lesson for some of us who say, “I’m not equipped to fight. I’m weak, sickly, uneducated, shy, fearful, penniless! Let someone more equipped fight while I cheer and grow similar moustache to show solidarity!”

But the Wing Commander took that old machine up, and gave chase to an F-16, a much superior American built jet fighter. He did not radio for support but gave chase, alone! Quite unlike you and your ‘lynch’ mobs and ‘Romeo’ squads who attack one lone man and lynch him isn’t it?

Abhi fought alone!

Not just alone, he crossed the safety of the Indian skies, into Pakistan airspace! Yes, enemy territory! And we, who within the safety of ourcomfort zones, our whatsapp groups, attack and shout and yell with rabid hate, would you cross alone and do such talk to the very ones you deride with words, or do you hide behind TV screen or social media?

Abhi then, my recently moustached friends, gets shot down, and injured. He is attacked by fierce enemy mob. Does, he kneel and plead for mercy? No! He fires in the air, jumps into a pond, swallows his papers, tries to fight back to the end, but is captured! Then walks shackled, bloodied and injured but with fearlessness and dignity! And that same courage is seen as he’s questioned by the enemy, his voice firm and brave, not giving in an inch.

And later as we Indian crowds cheered, he walked tall and strong, not revealing through limp or demeanor, his injuries, back into Indian territory across the Wagah Border.

Learn from him, you who sport his moustache, and others who have made him a hero. Stop, whining about weak body, but take the MIG 21s you’ve still got, and without using the mob, your gang, your majority or minority support, stand alone, lock onto the enemy spreading communal hatred, and take him or her down! Fight alone for the eradication of poverty, against police atrocities, against intolerance, then walk tall like Wing Commander Abhinandan did!

You in yon barber shop, come out; it’s not just the moustache..! 

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