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A high-profile 'Naik' of Indian Army
Region and religion are no obstacles for a talented man to scale heights. That is what Mohammad Amin Naik has ably proved. An Arjun awardee, Naik has become the first Kashmiri Muslim to reach the rank of major general of Indian Army.
THIS WEEK when brigadier, Mohammad Amin Naik, was elevated to the post of major general, it was a big occasion for the present generation of Kashmiri Muslims to celebrate and to get inspired from his chequered military career. Some locals have been living with a notion that seeking a career in Indian Army and then scaling high in the armed forces was out of bounds for Kashmiri Muslims. But Naik’s elevation has dispelled all such beliefs.
 
55-year-old major general Naik, who hails from Tral Town of Kashmir valley, is in fact a multi-faceted personality. Apart from guarding the borders, this high-profile Naik has brought laurels for India in sports as well.
 
An able rower, Naik holds the unique distinction to be a major general and an Arjun awardee as well. He won India eight gold medals, one silver and a bronze in various international championships in rowing. He has represented the country during the ninth and 10th Asian Games, the World Rowing Championship in Germany and the National Rowing Championship in Britain, Egypt and Luxor.
 
Major general Naik began his defence career on December 22, 1974 when he joined the Corps of Engineers. In 1993, he was conferred with a Sena Medal for his exemplary services. During his over 34 years in the Indian Army, he has served as a design civil engineer and a Garrison Engineer with the Eastern Naval Command, Visakhapatnam, and remained in army headquarters as general staff officer-1 also.
 
Naik has also commanded 14 Border Road Task Force in Tanga and 102 Engineer Regiment and 8th Mountain Division Engineering Regiment. As a brigadier, he was posted as chief engineer, Project Himank, in Leh.
 
From a small town of Tral, Naik had moved to Srinagar city for his initial schooling at Biscoe School and then at SP College, Srinagar. His talent, dedication and loyalty have proved that everyone in India has a scope to excel. Region and religion are then immaterial.
 
An ace rower, Naik must be in the row to lead the Indian Army someday. But then, he considers himself only ‘Naik’…. By name as well as by designation!
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