Friday, 15 August 2014

Major martyred in Kashmir gets Ashok Chakra

NEW DELHI: Major Mukund Varadarajan, who killed two terrorists before succumbing to his injuries in J&K in April, has been awarded the Ashoka Chakra, the nation's highest peacetime gallantry medal, in the Independence Day honours' list.

Major Mukund and his "buddy", Sepoy Vikram, displayed "raw courage" in cornering three terrorists, who had targeted polling officials at a "cement outhouse" at avillage in Shopian district of J&K on April 25. The officer first lobbed a grenade inside, killing the first terrorist.

But the second terrorist opened fire to grievously wound the 31-year-old Major. "Although bleeding profusely, the officer crawled forward and neutralised him. Sepoy Vikram then jumped ahead of his officer and shot the third terrorist dead from close quarters despite sustaining head and neck injuries," said an officer. Sepoy Vikram, who also laid down his life in the operation, has been awarded the Shaurya Chakra.

Two Navy officers, Lt-Commanders Manoran Kumar and Kapish Singh Muwal, are also among the posthumous awardees of the Shaurya Chakra, the third-highest gallantry award.

The two displayed great presence of mind and bravery in ensuring their submarine INS Sindhuratna did not sink around 40 nautical miles off Mumbai, with 94 personnel on board, after a fire broke out in its battery compartment on February 26.

"They prevented the spread of fire to save the submarine and its crew while laying down their lives," said an officer.



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