Archive for January 11th, 2013

Date: Thu, 10 Jan 2013 22:32:09 -0000
From: “Gurumurti”
Subject: Baba Story: How Margii Shot His Commanding Officer



Here is the story of how Baba saved our margii brother, Harihar Pandey, from the jaws of death.


Harihar Pandey joined the Indian military in 1963; and, in 1966, he was holding a clerical post and stationed in Panagar military base (West Bengal, India).

One of the top officers of his battalion was Major NK Pandey, who had a young daughter studying for her baccalaureate degree.

During Vasant Pachamii festival in the spring, the daughter was walking across the military compound when a jeep pulled up alongside her.

At that time, our margii brother Hariharji had just finished his lunch and was going out for a walk – it was around 1pm. He noticed that up ahead a jeep had stopped next to a young lady. Initially he did not think much of it.

Then he saw that the driver of the jeep was grabbing onto the girl’s hand and pulling her, and the young lady was struggling, crying for help, and trying desperately to walk in the opposite direction.

At that point, Harihar was about 100 meters away – he could clearly see that the young lady was being harassed. Harihar began to run towards the jeep in order to save the young lady.


When he arrived at the scene, Harihar saw that the young lady was scared and in tears, and that the driver of the jeep who was grabbing her was none other than his boss, Captain N. Bhattacarya, the 2nd company commander. Harihar also understood that his boss was drunk; the smell of alcohol was oozing from his mouth and his eyes were bloodshot / red. It was a festival day, and Captain Bhattacarya was coming from a midday party.

Immediately, Harihar followed standard protocol and saluted his commander and pleaded with him to let the young lady go.

The drunken Commander Bhattacarya was irritated by Harihar’s arrival and began to scold him. Bhattacarya let go of the young lady’s hand and smacked Harihar.

Harihar stood firm and told Commander Bhattacarya to leave the young lady alone. Bhattacarya replied, “No.”

Then Harihar said, “If you do not leave the young lady alone, I will drag you to the ground, sit on your chest, and beat you.”

Hearing this and seeing Harihar’s strength of mind, Bhattacarya stood still, and the terrified young lady left the scene. After looking into each other’s eyes, Commander Bhattacarya and Harihar parted ways.


Harihar decided to go directly home where he remained for some hours. Then he received word that he was to perform quarter-guard duty that night in front of Bhattacarya’s house. Immediately, Harihar knew that this meant trouble; it was some type of punishment or trick. Because although he was in the military, Harihar worked in an office and rarely did things like guard duty, let alone night guard duty with a loaded gun in front of Bhattacarya’s residence. Harihar knew that he had to be extremely careful.


That night, Hariharji was vigilant as he attended his post. He was keeping alert in all directions. Then sometime after midnight, Harihar heard someone approaching him from behind.

Harihar turned around and yelled, “Stop! Halt!.”

Then Harihar saw that the person approaching him was his boss, Commander Bhattacarya. So Harihar saluted him.

Commander Bhattacarya then began his tirade, “Who do you think you are? Why did you come running when I was with that young lady? Do you think you are some kind of moralist?! What is wrong with you!!”

In this way Commander Bhattacarya was abusing Harihar. Harihar noticed the strong smell of alcohol emitting from Bhattacarya. Harihar understood the danger.

Then Commander Bhattacarya sneered and said, “You know, in the military it is very easy to kill someone and cover it up.”

In his fury, Bhattacarya continued, “I am going to kill you now, bury you. I will make you disappear from this earth. You know it is not difficult to eliminate (kill) a soldier. All I have to do is shoot you and proclaim to one and all that you were trying to escape and run from your duty. I will brand you as an escapee, take your property, and arrest your entire family.”

Then Bhattacarya took out his revolver and pressed the barrel of the gun against Harihar’s chest. Bhattacarya’s eyes had the look of murder. His breath wreaked of alcohol. The situation was ugly and tense.

Harihar was standing there completely still, not knowing what to do. Then from behind he heard Baba’s voice: “Kill him, shoot him, don’t miss, otherwise he is going to kill you!”

Harihar wanted to turn around and look towards where the voice was coming from, but he dared not look back.

Again Baba’s voice came: “Take action, kill him, he is going to kill you, do not delay even one more second!”

(Note: Decades and years later when Harihar would tell this story, then when describing Baba’s voice, his body would become full of goosebumps and his mind would become very vibrated and run towards Parama Purusa.)

In that next instant, Harihar somehow reached for his own gun, and before he could think anything, his own fingers just “pulled the trigger.”

He had shot Bhattacarya, and Commander Bhattacarya fell to the ground.

Harihar saw his commander lying there and then pointed his gun again and shot him a second time to ensure he was completely dead.


After the sound of the second gunshot, sirens and alarms sounded in that military compound and people came running from all directions. All the soldiers reached to that place.

They all saw that Commander Bhattacarya had been killed.

Then Harihar crouched down in a fighting stance, reloaded his gun, and forcefully yelled, “If anyone comes even one stop closer I will shoot!”

All the soldiers stayed where they were – frozen.

They understood that when Harihar had already killed his commander then he was capable of doing anything. And from Harihar’s side, he was thinking that, “Already I am going to get capital punishment for killing my superior, so killing more people will not make things any worse.” He had nothing more to lose.

The entire situation was very tense.

Then our margii brother Harihar shouted out, “I want your promise that no one will torture or punish me. I want justice.”

Nobody knew what to do or what to say.


Then the top commander, CF Warden arrived. He was very understanding and intelligent. He said, “I will give you justice. If you are right, if you are innocent in all of this, I will give you justice, just drop your gun.”

So Harihar put his gun down and was arrested.

He was taken to the military jail and then quickly brought to the judge, just a few days later.



The judge simply asked him, “Did you shoot your commander?”

Harihar replied, “Yes.”

And the hearing with the judge was over.

This went on for weeks. Harihar would get called to the military court, the judge would ask the same question, and Harihar would give the same reply.

The whole thing appeared to be hopeless and Harihar began to get frustrated and wondered why the judge was not asking him for any more details.

In that desperate mood, Harihar sent one of the new margiis that he had created, Umashankar Pandey, and told him to go to Baba. Harihar instructed Umashankar to tell Baba that, “I am in jail and that the situation is not at all good.”


Umashankar set out on his journey and reached to where Baba was. As Umashankar was a new margii, he had never been to see Baba before. This was his first time and he did not know how he would be able to see Baba.

Umashankar reached Jamalpur at night and decided to wait until morning and tell Baba the whole story in general darshan. So Umashankar took rest for the night, woke up and attended to his morning duties etc. While he was washing, various margiis came in his direction and said, “Who has come from Panagar. Umashankar was surprised that even though he had arrived unannounced, they had come looking for him.

Baba had asked PA Satyananda if anyone had come from Panagar. PA then demanded that people go see if anyone had come from Panagar in the night. In this way they found Umashankar, he was brought before Baba.

Umshankar was thinking that he would tell Baba all the details and go over the entire story, but before he could say anything, Baba told, “Tell Harihar to do sadhana and everything will be alright.”

Umashankar kept trying to tell Baba more of the details, i.e. that Harihar was in jail, but each time Baba would interrupt him and say, “Tell Harihar to do sadhana and everything will be alright – he should not worry. Parama Purusa will take care of everything.”

Umashankar then returned to Panagar in an unhappy mood. He felt he did not get to tell Baba anything. Umashankar conveyed to Harihar all that had transpired during his visit with Baba, and Harihar smiled and said, “Baba understands everything.”


By this time, Harihar had been in jail for a while – a few months had gone by. He had dreamed of Baba on numerous occasions. Plus every week he was being called before the military judge, i.e. Major General PC Chaddha.

Harihar’s supervisors and fellow officers were telling him to change his statement, but Harihar refused and insisted that he wanted justice.


Finally, one day Judge Chaddha called Harihar and again asked him, “Did you shoot your commander?”

Then Harihar replied, “Yes, Your Honor, but there is a long story about this that I wish to tell you in a confidential way, not in front of this entire courtroom crowd. Bhattacarya was a sinner. I killed him and that was a dharmic action, but I want to tell all the details in private.”

Actually, Harihar wanted to save the prestige of the young lady; he did not want her to be ostracised. So Harihar requested a private session with the judge. And it was granted.

The judge cleared the courthouse, and then in a calm, deliberate manner, Harihar said, “If my daughter or mother is sexually harassed by someone and you saw what would you do?”

The judge carefully examined Harihar’s face and said, “I would kill that person.”

Harihar responded, “That is what I did.”

Harihar explained the entire course of events to the judge. He told how he saw the young lady, how someone was grabbing her, how that turned out to be Commander Bhattacarya, how Bhattacarya then threatened him and gave him night guard duty, and finally about the epic scene in the middle of the night. All these things he carefully told to the judge. It took 45 minues

The judge listened and took notes.

The judge seemed surprised that on his military base cantonment that a young lady could be harassed and kidnapped.

Harihar furthermore told, “This happened just as I told you. If you investigate and find that I have made even 1% mistake then you must inflict punishment on me.” In this way the meeting concluded.

Afterwards, Harihar returned to his cell and the judge began to investigate the case. Step by step, line by line, the judge was astonished to discover that all that Harihar told was true. In particular, the judge discovered that the young lady who was harassed was Major NK Pandey’s daughter. The judge visited the family they corroborated Harihar’s account. Indeed, all in all, the judge talked to many witnesses who confirmed the course of events.


On one special day known as judgment day, all the offenders get dressed in their normal clothes and are allowed to participate in a military parade and then are brought forth before the judge for the final decision.

When Harihar stood before the judge, many thought that he would be sentenced to death, i.e. shot for killing his supervising officer.

The judge asked all to rise as he spoke: “The decision of the court is that Harihar Pandey is not guilty and he is to be set free under certain conditions. He is not to have home leave for 5 years, he cannot stay in any posting for more than 1 month, and he is not to be promoted for ten years. Under these conditions he is set free.”

Hearing this, everyone cheered and celebrated on Harihar’s behalf.


Even though he was set free, it was generally thought that Harihar would have to live under a difficult set of rules.

But Harihar thought, “Although I may not get home leave for 5 years, but each and every month I will be transferred and in so doing I will be granted ten days to reach my new post.”

And sure enough, after one month, Harihar received his transfer orders and had ten days to reach his designation. In that ten day period, Harihar went straight to Baba, and Baba showered Harihar with immense love and grace.

During that sweet visit, Baba said, “It is duty of a margii to fight for dharma and that is what you did.”

And so it was that during many of his monthly transfers, Harihar was blessed to be able to go see Baba.

Another point in all of this is that if Harihar had not done this deed then his samskara would have been fulfilled in some other way. So by doing this act Harihar did two things: (1) He stood up for dharma by saving a defenseless young lady; and (2) he fulfilled his samskara of going to jail.

Some who suffer from a cowardly mentality might think that Harihar only invited trouble by coming forward. Many do not want to do ksattriyacita sega; they do not want to risk their lives. What such persons do not realize is that they will have to face their samskaras (mental agony) in some other way. Harihar got a double benefit: First he did a heroic, virtuous deed by saving the young lady, and by suffering in jail he burned an old samskara. If he had not done this, he would have faced that old samskara in another manner. So the coward’s psychology is meaningless.

Finally, shortly after this incident, Harihar thought the he should more more Ananda Marga work, not military work. So he left his position in the military and was free of those imposed stipulations by the military court.


If we follow dharma and fight against injustice then Baba will always protect us. That is His divine decree. In his life, Harihar stood up for dharma and protected a defenseless young lady, and Baba graciously saved Harihar from the jaws of death.

Baba says, “Men and women are human beings having equal dignity. As the physical strength of women is less than that of men, the latter should always endeavour to save the prestige of women. As the mothers of men, women can claim this much as a right. Special attention should be paid to the comforts of women during festivals, at spiritual conferences, and on other occasions.” (1)

“Fight for your Ideology. Be one with your Ideology. Live for your Ideology. Die for your Ideology.” (2)

Baba says, ““Dharma rakśati rakśitah”. If you protect dharma, dharma will become stronger… it will be an asset to you. You will get more help. A wise person should make dharma stronger.” (3)


Sadguru Baba is an eternal Entity. Still He resides in your mind – in your happiness and sorrow. An aspirant must ask for His grace to adhere to the code of dharma. If one is sincere today the Baba will come and save you, ensuring that you are one with dharma, just as in the past He saved Harihar.

Parama Purusa is ever-present. One should follow dharma and when one feels fully exhausted after having spent all their energy, one should ask “O Parama Purusa, if you wish me to proceed on, then give me the strenth to persevere, i.e. to face those negative samskaras of the past.”

Asking in this way is dharmic. One must not ask for any material thing or even for a particular outcome. Only one should ask for strength to face the situation, because if you have strength then that problem is no longer a problem.

Here I close out with Baba’s teaching.


“One who does not come forward to help when seeing a person in distress is unworthy to be called a human being – he or she is a slur on Ananda Marga.” (4)

“One who is dedicated to an ideal must be prepared to gladly and eagerly give up one’s all – even one’s life – for the collective interest.” (5)

“Human beings devoid of bhágavata dharma are just like animals. I have already said that if human beings lack bhágavata dharma they are actually worse than animals. Animals do not have a developed intellect or consciousness; human beings do. If human beings fail to utilize their developed intellect and consciousness, choosing to avoid the pursuit of bhágavata dharma, they are the enemies of humanity and a slur on the human race. Their actions, having no relation to bhágavata dharma, should be considered contrary to humanity and their innate characteristic. Their future is bound to be doomed, like that of a huge tree struck by lightning. The downtrodden masses who long to better themselves should embrace the path of bhágavata dharma. The easiest and most natural way for human civilization and humanity to grow is through bhágavata dharma. There is no other way. Hence, those who sincerely seek the welfare of humanity must uphold bhágavata dharma.” (6)


“When one is fighting for an ideal, however, to accept defeat means to plunge in severe gloom. Where there is not the least possibility to remove the gloom, one will have to sacrifice everything to uphold one’s ideal. You should always be ready like an armed soldier to meet such exigencies.” (7)

“In another situation, some men are attacking a helpless person. In this case neither sermons nor nursing is needed, nor is food to be offered; there you will have to render Kśatriyocita service. In this situation, Kśatriyocita Sevá is of greater value and other services are entirely meaningless.” (8)


“Keep serving the people, and as you render service ascribe Brahmahood to those you are serving. Try to make them happy with all the sweetness of your heart. Help others with the true spirit of service, not with the intention of propagating your self or group interests or any “ism” you may adhere to. Think that the Supreme Entity has come to you in the form of needy people to test your sense of duty. This sort of selfless service is karma yoga.” (9)

“Animals do not have a developed intellect or consciousness; human beings do. If human beings fail to utilize their developed intellect and consciousness, choosing to avoid the pursuit of bhágavata dharma, they are the enemies of humanity and a slur on the human race. Their actions, having no relation to bhágavata dharma, should be considered contrary to humanity and their innate characteristic. Their future is bound to be doomed, like that of a huge tree struck by lightning. The downtrodden masses who long to better themselves should embrace the path of bhágavata dharma. The easiest and most natural way for human civilization and humanity to grow is through bhágavata dharma. There is no other way. Hence, those who sincerely seek the welfare of humanity must uphold bhágavata dharma.” (10)

in Him


In his book, ‘My Elder Brother’, Manas Ranjan Sarkar, Baba’s younger brother, tells how one day in his childhood he got into a fight at school to protect someone, but in turn he himself was beaten up. When he returned home, everyone told him not to engage in fighting and that he did wrong. But when Baba saw him, Baba praised his younger brother and said, ‘You did a great job’. Manas Ranjan became so happy hearing this.

So always Baba supports those who uphold dharma – He always supports those who protect the weak and the helpless.


(1) Caryacarya – 1, ‘Social Relationship Between Men and Women’
(2) Ananda Vanii #14
(3) Ananda Vacanamrtam – 5
(4) Caryacarya – 2, Society, Pt #12
(5) A Guide to Human Condcut
(6) Ananda Marga Ideology and Way of Life – 10, Bhágavata Dharma
(7) A Guide to Human Condcut
(8) Subhasita Samgraha – 1, Yajiṋa and Karmaphala
(9) Ananda Marga Ideology & Way of Life – 7
(10) Ananda Marga Ideology and Way of Life – 10, Bhágavata Dharma

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