Operation Blue Freedom: Seeing Ability In Dis-Ability
Reading the Title “Operation Blue Freedom”, the first thought that came across your mind will be, “Yes, another sneak peek in one of the operations of Special Forces”. Well, let’s say indeed it is a Special Forces operation. The Operation related to Freedom. An operation by our own Special Force Veterans. An operation that is still going on. Yes, this is true, and Operation Still going on and will continue to go on.
Have you ever thought about what happens to some injured veterans? Well, we have seen and heard multiple stories of Military personal, who have suffered a Technical Glitch. Like Ejecting of Aircraft, Parachute Problems of Air Droppings, Encounters with Terrorists, Bursting of Equipment, Firing from the enemy, etc. Well, have we ever given a thought to what happens to that personnel. A person who has a sheer motivation, a sheer dedication to protect us from the foreign forces suddenly reaches a stage where his own body doesn’t support.
A Spinal Cord failure, a bullet in the leg leading to its removal, Sharpnel in the body making the personnel stick with its chair for the rest of life. Think about personnel, with an active body with the fitness of Special Forces, tied in the chain and shackles of the Chair. Don’t we think that it is necessary for them to give the freedom of these constraints that limit him?
Well, one such person, named Major Vivek Jacob, who retired from Special forces thought of the same after he suffered a spinal cord injury due to his Parachute failure in 2015. At the military hospital, he met an Air force officer, who was tied to his wheelchair due to his permanent paralysis issue. But this man was still young at heart, wanted to get rid of his wheelchair. The idea came out in Major Jacob and he decided to do something with it.
Now let’s say, what if you are told “Let’s go scuba diving”, you will just say “Meh” and think about 100 other questions. But what if said the Trainer is the Military Veteran, a person who trains MARCOS and many other SPECIAL FORCES. You will come trusting blindly on him. And Why not? Means you could get the quality level of Military in Scuba and why won’t you join?
Formation of C.L.A.W. & “Operation Blue Freedom”
- SIGNIFICANCE OF THE NAME
- Operation – This signifies our Special Forces military background. It spells out our focussed approach and attitude to the mission at hand.
- Blue – This signifies Earth.
- Freedom – This signifies our journey to pure Freedom for all – as individuals, collectively as humans, and for the other species of life which share Earth as home.
The promise made that day, set Major Jacob on a completely different life path. It became a guiding light of the purpose and sowed the seed of what was to unfold. They formed up under Team C.L.A.W. Each team member had been a crack soldier in the Army / Navy SF and was highly trained with multiple specializations in Mountaineering, Skydiving, Scuba diving, Unarmed combat, Survival tech, and Emergency Med Response. Each Team member had undergone some of the toughest selection, training, and operational environments, over decades, across the globe.
Thinking of what C.L.A.W stands for. Well the C.L.A.W. stands for Conquering Land Air Water. As Major Jacob Started the C.L.A.W, members from the SF Teams he had commanded and others, like the MARCOS (Navy Special Forces) he had met along his journey, joined him. Like, Birds of Same feather Flock Together. And this flock started the Team, united their energy and skills to teach their life skills to people with disabilities. In January 2019 The C.L.A.W. established. This Team of Veterans in Feb 2019, Team C.L.A.W gave life to ‘Operation Blue Freedom’ – A movement to express the powerful spirit and ability of people with disabilities.
The Vision of the team is to change the perception of pity, charity and inability associated with ‘People with disabilities’. Along with this Recreating it with the perception of dignity, freedom, and ability. Make the perception shift from “What He/She can’t” to “What He/She can”. Along with that skilling them and also using advanced technologies to overcome their inability. They also focus on generating the employability for these people as there is immense potential in them.
What Do They Want To Do?
They want a Team of Personnel of Special Forces and people with disabilities and merging them into one, to tap the hidden potential. Developing films that encourage and motivate disabled persons to pursue an adventurous life. Along with this they also want to create a network of such people.
Their Ambitions doesn’t stop here, here is the main part
They actually want to set Triple World Records in Air, Land, and Sea. They will train the Divyangjan in Sky Diving, SCUBA Diving, and Mountaineering by the former Special Forces’ instructors
Record 1: Land World Record
On Land they will climb, The Siachen Glacier (Subject To Government Sanction), India is the ‘World’s Highest Battlefield’. It is a stark icon of war and destruction. Under Operation Blue Freedom it is the ideal location for Land world Record. A Team of 20 people will be part of the journey and will climb/drive to the Siachen Glacier. Among them, 8 will be Divyangjan, and instructors and Sherpas will also be a part of them.
Record 2: Air World Record
In Air, they will Skydive. Here, 10 Divyangjan will skydive independently, Accelerated Free Fall (AFF). Divyangjan Sky Divers, their SF (Special Forces veteran) instructors, the local Tandem Instructors, and prominent visionaries will be part of the team. The Dubai Drop Zone is the Spot for this activity. So the event would take place in Dubai and create ‘Operation Blue Freedom – Air World Record’
Record 3: Water World Record
In Water, they will Scuba Dive. World’s Largest SCUBA Occupational Therapy and skill training program for people with disabilities. The event will take place in the Maldives. Here, for Scuba Diving 30 Divyangjan will be trained. Veteran Special Forces SCUBA instructors will be training supported by local SCUBA divers in a phased manner. The trained Divyangjan will carry out coral conservation activities.
Sounds totally Exciting right? Why shouldn’t it, you have an Army Veteran who trained in Special Forces. And these can be done by Divyajan because these are mediums where they actually live the life they lost.
Implications For Indian Armed Forces
- Rehabilitation of Disabled war Veterans and Battle Casualties:- Generation of suitable employment opportunities and effective medical rehabilitation
- ESM (Ex-Servicemen):- Relevant employment opportunities for ESM in line with their expertise and special skills gained during military service.
- Symbiotic improvement in professionalism within Armed Forces:- Soldiers will strive at their own end to expand and refine their own professional skill set in order to fit-in well, post-retirement from Armed Forces.
- Positive portrayal of MoD:- They are pioneers in the rehabilitation of the Indian Divyangjan community.
- Positioning in MoD:- IT will act as a catalyst to global export of initiatives like “Skill India”, “Startup India”, “Sugamaya Bharat”, “Fit India” and “Swachh Bharat Abhiyan”
Is This Legit?
Well, the whole world will be watching you. 15% of the world population, who are disabled, will also know, what they can even do. You would be a role model and participant in the world-record-holding event. Along with this Leading Corporate, SMEs, Disability Rights organizations and activists, Government Organizations, Climate Conservation organizations, and the cherry on top The UNITED NATIONS would be also looking at you.
They have collaborated with Handicapped SCUBA Association USA, War Wounded Foundation – India, Tourism Ministry, India, United Services Institute, India (https://usiofindia.org/), and the Republic of Maldives through MMPRC (Maldives Marketing, Media and PR Corporation) (https://visitmaldives.com/en). Union Minister for Sports and Youth Affairs, India – Shri Kiren Rijiju has inaugurated the Delhi Chapter of ‘Operation Blue Freedom’
Along with this, they have been supported by the Administration of Lakshadweep UT for the preparations of the water world record. International medal winning Paralympics athletes and other leading specialists have signed up with Team C.L.A.W to participate in Operation Blue Freedom – Triple ‘Elemental’ World Records.
Want To Listen The Experience Of Veteran, See The Video Below
The whole ‘C.L.A.W Operation Blue Freedom’ Expedition series, is, and will be captured and will be created into a feature film. The Film is being created to share this pathfinding expedition through leading media platforms and film festivals across the world.
Want To Join?
You might think these are for veterans or the disabled. No. This initiative is for everyone, veteran, physically challenged people, including you and Me. The motive is to bring Special out of everyone. The Triple World record is just the small part. But for the Disabled, this is actually the first step towards freedom. Operation Blue Freedom is actually the Baby of C.L.A.W..
True freedom is a collective experience. Either we all have it or none of us do.