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Indonesian army officer names son from Indian epic 'Mahabharata'

New Delhi, Sat, 03 Mar 2012 ANI

New Delhi, Mar 3 (ANI): An Indonesian army officer has named his son 'Ashwathama', which has been drawn from the Indian mythological epic 'Mahabharata'.


'Dharamaputra' is the motto emblazoned on the insignia of the 25 KOSTRAD (Indonesian Army's Strategic Reserve Command) soldiers, who participated in the just-concluded Counter Insurgency and Jungle Warfare (CIJW) joint training exercise 'Garuda Shakti' with the Indian troops at CIJW School, Vairengte in Mizoram.


For these Indonesian soldiers, who mostly follow the Islamic faith, names such as 'Chakravyuh' also drawn from the Mahabharata are not unfamiliar.


Both Indian and Indonesian soldiers congratulated Captain Toni Oki Priyono, when the young Kostrad officer of the 13th Infantry Brigade, announced that he had named his newly born son 'ashwathama'.


In the Mahabharata, Ashwathama was the son of Guru Dronacharya.


Captain Toni's son was born on February 27, the day he set out on 'Exercise Chakravyuh' in the Lushai Hills for a three-day and two-night mission.


The decision to name his son Ashwathama was Captain Priyono's way of acknowledging the role of Indian Army instructors at the CIJW School, Vairengte.


"It was Colonel Y Sangwan who suggested the name when I approached him to suggest an apt name for my son," said Captain Priyono.


Colonel Sangwan is the Commanding Officer of the 19 Madras Infantry Battalion whose troops took part in this first joint training drill with Indonesia.


"Captain Priyono wanted an Indian name for his son. But since a great deal was being spoken of the Mahabharata, and he took the name of Dronacharya several times, I suggested Ashwathama," said Colonel Sangwan.


But it was not as if the decision was Captain Priyono's alone. His wife too happily endorsed the name.


Captain Priyono's elder daughter, however, has a traditional Islamic name.


"It was very nice of the Colonel to put me through to my wife in Indonesia and I could take her approval," said Captain Priyono.


The Indonesian soldiers arrived at the CIJW School, Vairengte, on February 19. (ANI)


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