General K. Sundarji Biography
General K Sundarji was one of the most famous and competent generals of the Indian Army. Born on 28 April 1930 at Chengelpet in Tamil Nadu, he joined the Madras Christian College, but left it before receiving a degree to join the army.
He graduated from the Defence Services Staff College (DSSC), Wellington, before moving on to the General Staff College, Fort Leavenworth, USA and the National Defence College, New Delhi.
General K Sundarji received a Masters in International Studies from Allahabad University followed by another Masters in Defence Studies from Madras University.
Commissioned initially into the Mahar regiment, he served in various places all over the country. In 1963, he served as a part of the Indian contingent in the UN mission in Congo.
General K Sundarji served as a Brigadier General in the Rangpur sector of Bangladesh during the 1971 Indo-Pak war. He was promoted to the rank of Major General in 1974.
He hit the headlines when in 1984, he led Operation Bluestar, designed to flush out Khalistani terrorists from the Golden Temple in Amritsar. In 1986, he took over as the Chief of Army Staff. Widely known as the “thinking General”, General Sundarji was the Army Chief from January 31, 1986, to April 30, 1988.
During his tenure, the Indian government sent in troops sent the IPKF (Indian Peace Keeping Force) to Sri Lanka, which had to pull back from Sri Lanka later.
General K Sundarji was a part of the core team credited with shaping India’s nuclear doctrine. Apart from being one of the finest soldiers the country has produced, he was a prolific writer. His book Blind men of Hindoostan won rave reviews. He passed away in 1998.