Wednesday, 23 January 2013

The Commando with the Golden Harmonica

Phurbu Rindol  - Playing the mouth-organ

Phurbu Rindol is a para-commando. He belonged to the elite Special Frontier Forces until he became a Quadriplegic in 1995 during a daring rescue mission. He was only 21 at that time.

“Three of us were rushed to Siachen on a rescue mission to extricate some jawans of the Gorkha Rifles who were stuck on a glacier. As we were conducting the rescue, a snow avalanche rushed down the mountain slopes. All the others were swept off the mountain slope. I remained buried in deep snow for more than 2 hours, before I was rescued.”

Rindol has only partial movement in his arms. And, as with many paraplegics, his lungs too are affected, hampering deep breathing. But what has not been affected is his indomitable will.

As with so many mountain folks, Rindol has a great sense of music. In fact he was a keen guitar player. Unable to handle that instrument now, he taught himself to play the harmonica (mouth organ). But, even that is becoming increasingly difficult – because of his limited lung capacity, and also to manouevre the little instrument. So Rindol is now training himself to become proficient in singing.

As the only singer at Paraplegic Rehabilitation Centre, Khadki, he is often called on stage during functions. For us too, a Music Programme is never complete until we’ve had this little treat.

Good work, Rindol. Keep it up! And God bless you.

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