Republic Day: Get inspired by the lives of these men to whom the nation came first
First Published Jan 26, 2021, 12:06 PM IST
On this Republic Day, we have compiled a few stories of our brave men, who have contributed phenomenally to the nation
COLONEL BIKUMALLA SANTOSH BABU
MAHA VIR CHAKRA (POSTHUMOUS)
16TH BATTALION, BIHAR REGIMENT
Colonel Bikumalla Santosh Babu, Commanding Officer 16 BIHAR deployed in Galwan Valley (Eastern Ladakh) during Operation SNOW LEOPARD, was tasked to establish an Observation Post in face of the enemy. Organising and briefing his troops about the situation with a sound plan, he successfully executed the task.
While holding the position his column faced stiff resistance from the adversary who attacked using lethal and sharp weapons along with heavy stone pelting from adjoining heights. Undaunted by the violent and aggressive action by the overwhelming strength of enemy soldiers, the officer in the true spirit of service before self, continued to resist the enemy’s attempt to pushback Indian troops.
Despite being grievously injured, Colonel Bikumalla Santosh Babu led from the front with absolute command and control despite hostile conditions to deter the vicious enemy attack at his position. In the skirmish that broke out and ensuing hand to hand combat with enemy soldiers, he valiantly resisted the enemy attack till his last breath, inspiring and motivating his troops to hold ground.
SUBEDAR SANJIV KUMAR
KIRTI CHAKRA (POSTHUMOUS)
4TH BATTALION, THE PARACHUTE REGIMENT
Subedar Sanjiv Kumar was enrolled into the Parachute Regiment on August 30, 1996. The Junior Commissioned Officer has had multiple tenures along the Line of Control and has also served with the elite National Security Guard.
On April 4, 2020, Subedar Sanjiv Kumar was the leading squad commander of the Special Forces detachment which was helicopter-dropped in the Keran Sector (Jammu & Kashmir) to intercept and eliminate an infiltration track of Pakistan-sponsored terrorists.
After being heli-dropped, Subedar Sanjiv Kumar along with his squad began to track the foot trails of the infiltrating terrorists. After wading through waist-deep snow for over five hours, his squad homed on to the likely location of the terrorists. As the squad was discreetly closing in towards their target, the leading scouts of the squad stepped on an ice ledge which gave in and both the scouts fell into the nullah where hiding terrorists opened indiscriminate fire injuring both scouts.
Subedar Sanjiv Kumar along with his buddy immediately surged ahead into the nullah to rescue them. While his buddy provided covering fire, Subedar Sanjiv unmindful of his personal safety, under intense fire from the terrorists evacuated one of the scouts from the contact site. He then moved forward to retrieve the other scout when he came under intense fire from the hiding terrorist. Realising the imminent danger to his squad members, Subedar Sanjiv charged towards the hiding terrorists and neutralised one terrorist at very close range.
Thereafter, Subedar Sanjiv in a daring act crawled towards the other terrorists and engaged them in a hand to hand combat seriously injuring them. In the intense close quarter fight that ensued Subedar Sanjiv Kumar sustained a gun shot wound from which he later succumbed.
NAIB SUBEDAR NUDURAM SOREN
VIR CHAKRA (POSTHUMOUS)
16TH BATTALION, BIHAR REGIMENT
Naib Subedar Nuduram Soren during Operation SNOW LEOPARD deployed in Galwan Valley (Eastern Ladakh) valiantly led his column and resisted the enemy’s attempt to push back the Indian soldiers establishing an Observation Post.
He organised his column, countered the adversary forcefully and stopped them in their attempt to push back Indian troops. During the skirmish, he was viewed as a daunting leader and was targeted by enemy soldiers with lethal and sharp weapons. Being grievously injured when asked to move back, as a true leader he refused, in spite of being heavily outnumbered by the enemy soldiers.
The Junior Leader stood at the forefront under hostile conditions and displayed raw courage, fighting with resolute spirit in a hand to hand combat, before succumbing to his injuries. The gallant action by the Junior Commissioned Officer resulted in a positive response which overwhelmed the enemy by surprise. His action speeded own retaliation and also galvanised own troops to continue to hold ground.
HAVILDAR K PALANI
VIR CHAKRA (POSTHUMOUS)
81 FIELD REGIMENT
Havildar (Gunner) K Palani was deployed in Galwan Valley (Eastern Ladakh) as part of Operation SNOW LEOPARD. On the night of June 15, 2020, he was part of the patrol of 16 BIHAR tasked to establish an Observation Post. In a close hand to hand fight, he fought valiantly and saved his subordinates from the aggressive action of the enemy soldiers.
Suddenly, the adversaries outnumbered and encircled him, with utter disregard to his personal safety, he stood bravely and tried to defend his comrades even when the enemy attacked him with sharp weapon injuring him seriously. His act of valour inspired other fellow soldiers to fight fiercely and resist enemy aggression.
In spite of his grievous injuries, he continued to hold his ground resolutely and in the finest traditions of the Indian Army, laid down his life for the motherland.
HAVILDAR TEJINDER SINGH
3 MEDIUM REGIMENT
On June 15, 2020, Havildar Tejinder Singh of 3 Medium Regiment was part of the Regimental column deployed at Galwan Valley (Eastern Ladakh). He was leading his column against the enemy resistance. Subsequently, the standoff turned violent and resulted in a hand to hand fight.
Concomitantly, a large enemy reinforcement joined in, thereby massively tipping the numbers in their favour. Undeterred by the numerical superiority of the enemy, the Non-Commissioned Officer took on the enemy in a hand to hand fight and resisted them gallantly.
He also organised a group of soldiers to effectively thwart several enemy soldiers displaying exemplary leadership. This gallant act was pivotal in inspiring their own troops to effectively engage the enemy troops during the violent standoff. The Non-Commissioned Officer kept on leading his column valiantly and fought fearlessly till he was grievously injured.