“Why can’t you stay for a few more hours? Take the next train,” said the soldier’s wife. They have been married for three months and she had the best time of her life in the last few months. Yesterday, Harsh received a call from the authorities. An unplanned operation had to be started immediately. So, he had to start immediately and reach the base office within a short span. His travel arrangements have been made.
“They’ve booked tickets for this. I’m not supposed to reschedule it. Let me go. I will return soon. If it is an unplanned operation, it must be small. We should be done soon. I will be calling you and we can keep talking on the phone, ” said Harsh to his wife.
Harsh’s wife, Keerthana, did not know much about the job at the Army. This entire episode is completely new for her. So, she sent him happily and did not show any signs of depression. She wanted him to be happy while he was going for his job.
Two days later, Keerthana learned that the country won the war at the border and there was no loss of life on this side of the country. She talked with Harsh a day before and he told her that they would definitely win the war as it was an easy one. Harsh told her that they were going to the border where there would be no reception of mobile phone networks. But, she did not hear from his after that. His mobile continued to remain turned off. She was very worried until she heard the news that the country won the war and there was no loss of life.
Keerthana waited for Harsh to return. She waited for one more day, in vain. Harsh did not return. Keerthana browsed through some of Harsh’s documents at home and retrieved some important phone numbers.
Keerthana called his Major Sergeant. He said, “How is that possible? Harsh started with us after the war. He took the train and I wished him good luck. The train would have reached your town yesterday morning. You do not get worried. Let me track him out. It’s all going to be fine.”
Though he spoke re assuredly, Keerthana started getting worried about her husband. She made some more calls and even filed a complaint in the police station. As she went about seeking help of people, unknowingly this piece of information went to the media.
All news channels started displaying news about a missing army man who played a major role in winning the recent border war. The news channels played the offensive against the government for not taking care of its army men within the country. The news has been sensationalized and portrayed in many ways.
Some news channels went to the extent saying that the war is not yet over. The enemy nation planned its revenge by nabbing this soldier who played a major role in the recent border war. Nobody knew the truth.
Investigators from the army and the police teamed up and started searching for Harsh.
They began their investigation in the Railway Station where Harsh took the train.
The head investigator found something fishy about the compartment which Harsh boarded. Apart from Harsh and ten other passengers, most of the other travelers were children and girls under the age of eighteen according to some eye-witnesses. However, the reservation records show that no berths were reserved for a large group of kids. The train staff had no clue about. When the conductor came to check the compartment, he did not find so many people, he claimed.
It all started as an investigation exercise to find Harsh. Slowly and steadily, it turned out to be an investigation against a huge human trafficking racket. This surprised the railway security forces who could not control it in the first place when it occurred. Nobody had a clue what Harsh had to do with all this.
Two days later, the investigators did not make much progressing in tracking the kids or Harsh. But, they issued some pictures of suspects as hand drawn by professional artists during the interrogations. They have distributed these pictures to all the nearby towns and places and they did not get any response even after this exercise.
After three days from the actual incident, the cops found a group of twenty kids in a deserted truck on the highway. The driver of the truck was murdered. The cops were informed by an anonymous caller. The cops could not trace the caller or record the call.
The kids were initially frightened to open their mouths. They were afraid they were getting kidnapped once again. But, as they were taken to a safe place and given proper food, some of the kids started speaking up. One of the kids said, “We were taken by four uncles. They used to hit us and keep us in dark houses. They never gave us much food. Then, he got us to the train. We were all in separate compartments before the train started. But, after a few hours, we all got into the same apartment. There was another group of sisters who joined us. They were all crying more than us. They spoke to the army uncle and asked his help. He threw away two of the rowdy uncles from the train and helped us get down the train at another station. But, after reaching the station, a group of rowdies came and attacked our army uncle and took all of us with them. After a few hours, we were told to get into the truck without the group of those elder sisters. Our army uncle came again and told us to stay in the truck even if it stopped moving. After a few hours, you came and saved us.”
This piece of information spread to the media, too. Harsh became an overnight hero in the state and the country. It was left for the cops to find out about the group of girls and the army man – Harsh.
Though Keerthana was worried about her husband, she was proud he continued to be patriotic even while being away from the war zone.
In an unprecedented fashion, members of the media started helping the cops in finding the girls and the army man. It has become a great movement across the country with many civilians, too, pledging their support against human trafficking. Save the girls and save the hero became instant topics on the Internet.
A girl who was traveling on a bus in another corner of the country noticed something peculiar about a badly hurt man and group of ten girls with him. There were two suspicious men with them. They did not look anything like the portraits drawn by the investigators and shared on the Internet. Without making any noise, she immediately posted the details of her bus and a silent picture of the hurt man on her social network asking the authorities to act immediately.
Keerthana recognized it to be her husband and informed the cops in her town. The media and the cops immediately acted upon it.
Even before the bus could reach its destination, the cops stopped it midway. They arrested the goons and took care of the girls. Harsh was admitted in the hospital. It took over a month for Harsh to recuperate. He was stabbed badly in many places.
The girls explained the entire story. They sought the help of the army man once they came to know that they were being sent out of the country to be sold to some rich people in the other country. Harsh fought with the criminals again and again. Finally, the kids were separated. Harsh killed the driver of the truck and informed the cops about the kids. He then came for the girls again and was brutally attacked by the larger group of the traffickers. He did not give up after that. As his name was shown everywhere, the traffickers stabbed him badly and took him with them everywhere.
The media and the entire country saluted Harsh for saving the kids and the girls. Keerthana was so proud of her husband.
Harsh said, “The patriot within is always alive. It is not just about working at the border.”