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In April 2008, Major General Mohd Amin Naik became the first Kashmiri Muslim General in the Indian Army. When this news was carried out in the media, the very use of the phrase “first Kashmiri Muslim” made him uncomfortable. He wondered why can’t it be simply put as “first Kashmiri” instead of emphasizing on the “Muslim” part of it. Later he realized the purpose. A purpose to inspire many more of Kashmiri Muslim youths to join the forces and serve the nation with pride. He strongly feels and believes that it’s about time now the youth there in the valley should leave their anguish and violence behind. He was also the first to join the army from the entire district. And the irony is that he hails from the same village as the slain militant leader Burhan Wani.
Maj General Mohd Amin Naik has conveyed a very important message during this conversation. He believes that there should be a prominent focus to tackle militancy and not the militant. A better way to tackle militancy is to provide a livelihood. Train the youth, give them the opportunities to develop and hone their skills and give them employment.
A naturally inclined athlete since childhood, he joined the Indian Military Academy, Dehra Dun on January 3rd, 1973. Major General Naik was born in Pulwama’s Batpora village on September 25, 1953. He studied at the Biscoe School and later joined S. P. College in Srinagar.
On December 22, 1974, he was commissioned into the Corps of Engineers after successfully passing out from the Indian Military Academy. In 1993, Major General Naik was decorated with the Sena Medal for his meritorious service. During his service tenure, he had a long stint as a civil design engineer and Garrison engineer with the Eastern Naval Command in Vizag. Major General Naik also commanded 14 Border Roads Task Force in Tanga, 102 Engineering Regiment and 8 Mountain Division Engineering Regiment.
Maj General Mohd Amin Naik is also a champion Rower. He was awarded the highest medal to an Indian sportsman – Arjuna Award for his accomplishments in Rowing. He won bronze in 1982 Asian Games (coxed pair) and has got 8 gold, one silver, and one bronze in national championships. He has also won two golds, one silver and a bronze in various international championships in rowing[source].
He also led an adventurous and successful Nanda Devi Ecological Mountaineering Expedition.
Maj Gen Mohd Amin is currently the chairman of Salwan Girls School, a school that funds the education of girls from humble backgrounds.
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