Naib Subedar Shiv Kumar Pal, 45, was supposed to return from south Sudan and meet his aged parents in the state capital on May 10. But that was not to be. Exactly a month before the scheduled visit, his mortal remains would be flown in from New Delhi for the last rites here on Thursday.
Pal is one of the two soldiers from Uttar Pradesh who were killed while on a UN peacekeeping mission in south Sudan on Tuesday. The other martyr Hawaldar Heera Lal belonged to Bulandshahr.
Pal's parents Captain (retd) TR Pal, 80, and Sita Laxmi Pal, 75, have been living in Krishna Palli colony in Alambagh since 1997. He is survived by wife Madhu, who works with the women's commission in Delhi, son Subhansh and daughter Ankita studying in Class 10 and Class 12 respectively at a Delhi school. “He had promised to settle down in Lucknow post retirement. He had even bought a plot in Aashiana to build his dream home,” an inconsolable TR Pal told HT over phone.
Pal's last rites would take place in Bhaisakund crematorium with military honours.
A native of Pratapgarh, Pal was with the Mahar infantry regiment since 1988.
Chief minister Akhilesh Yadav has expressed grief over the killing of the bravehearts.
Five Indian army personnel, including a lieutenant colonel, serving on a UN peacekeeping mission were killed when armed rebels launched an attack on a convoy they were escorting.