The last rites of Colonel Santosh Mahadik, who was martyred on Tuesday in a fierce gun battle with the terrorists in North Kashmir, were performed with full military honours at his native Pogarwadi village in Maharashtra’s Satara district on Thursday.
He was laid to rest amidst 21-gun salutes from the Indian Army.
Defence minister Manohar Parrikar, chief minister Devendra Fadnavis and other dignitaries paid tribute to Col. Mahadik, the commanding officer of 41 Rashtriya Rifles, who was critically injured during an operation in Kupwara district near Line of Control. He succumbed to his injuries later in the hospital.
Chants of ‘Santosh Mahadik amar rahen’ and ‘Bharat Mata ki jai’ filled up the air as thousands of people from his village and surrounding hamlets paid their last respect to the martyr.
Hailing from a humble family, Col Mahadik’s studied in Sainik school at Satara before joining the army in 1998. He was described by his friends and teachers from Sainik School as “calm in composure”.
He was awarded Sena Medal for exceptional gallantry and leadership as a young officer while fighting the terrorists in Lolab Valley of Kashmir in 2003.