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"Born To Fly"

Written by: Nitin Sathe (Air Cdr)

Published by: Vitasta

A book review by: Dr. Ali Khwaja

Perma-link for article: http://www.banjaraacademy.org/born-to-fly-book-review-by-counsellor-author-life-coach-dr-ali-khwaja

Born To Fly

“Airborne to chairborne” wrote Flying Officer M P Anil Kumar when a crippling accident brought him down from the fighter jets he was flying, to the confines of a wheelchair for life. But there was no pathos or rancour in what he wrote – he described his journey from being an outstanding fighter pilot of the Indian Air Force to the life of a quadriplegic in a Rehab Centre as one would describe a change of job or city. And that article brought him innumerable fans among school children who adored him for a quarter of a century. As if life had not doled out enough challenges for him, he succumbed to cancer after an eventful quarter century of helping, encouraging and motivating innumerable youth with his “pencil” power, a pencil held in the mouth to tap out great words of wisdom on the computer keyboard.

MP’s life has been immortalized by his batch-mate, now serving as an Air Commodore in The IAF, after extensive research on every aspect of this amazing person who has no parallel in history. Air Cdr Sathe spent two years travelling, meeting people, interviewing everyone who had interacted with MP, and going through innumerable writings of the great pilot-turned- writer. The result is this book, whose Royalty will be chanelised towards formation of MP Anil Kumar Foundation to look after paraplegics in the country.

A brief review like this one cannot do justice to the book. Whether you wish to learn about our great Air Force, about fighter planes, about human dynamics, about courage against all odds, and about how role models are made, just go through this fascinating narrative – which starts from MPs early days in a small village in Kerala, to Sainik School, to NDA to Air Force Academy to Pathankot Air Force Station and then to the Paraplegic Rehabilitation Centre in Pune. A life lived beyond the wildest expectations of anyone, a person worth saluting with respect, regard, love and honour.

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