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HindustanTimes Sat,20 Sep 2014

Ashok Chakra for Rashtriya Rifles martyr in J&K operation

HT Correspondents, Hindustan Times  New Delhi/Chandigarh, August 15, 2014
First Published: 08:39 IST(15/8/2014) | Last Updated: 08:51 IST(15/8/2014)

Major Mukund Varadarajan, 32, who was killed in a counterterrorist operation in Jammu and Kashmir in April will be posthumously awarded the country’s highest peacetime gallantry award, Ashok Chakra, on Independence Day.

Varadarajan, then serving in 44 Rashtriya Rifles (RR), displayed outstanding gallantry during the operation in which three terrorists were killed in south Kashmir’s Shopian area.

Another soldier killed in the same operation, Sepoy Vikram (Rajput Regiment), will be posthumously awarded the Shaurya Chakra, the third-highest peacetime gallantry award.

SHAURYA CHAKRA FOR GALLANT ACTS

Among the other Shaurya Chakra awardees are Major Abhishek Kumar, Punjab Regiment; Major Manohar Singh Bhatti, Parachute Regiment; Major Satnam Singh, Corps of Engineers; Major Vishal Singh Raghav, Rajputana Rifles; Subedar Prakash Chand (posthumous), Kumaon Regiment; Naik Ansaigra Basumatary, Assam Regiment; Lance Naik Bharat Kumar Chhetri, Gurkha Rifles; and Rifle man Prem Bahadur Roka Magar, Gurkha Rifles, for their gallant acts in counter-insurgency operations.

On January 13, Major Abhishek killed t wo terrorists of Jaish-eMohammad in Sopore and rescued an injured soldier. On October 13, 2013, he had apprehended one. Major Bhatti’s team helped in elimination of five foreign terrorists on February 24 in General Area Daradpura of Jammu and Kashmir.

Major Raghav led the patrol in the heavy snow-bound forest of Daradpura on February 24, resulting in elimination of seven hardcore foreign terrorists of Lashkar-e-Toiba. Major Satnam Singh, on December 9, 2013, led a search operation in Manipur resulting in killing of two terrorists and recovery of huge cache of arms and ammunition.

Chhetri foiled an infiltration bid in Jammu and Kashmir on September 5, 2013. On September 22, 2013, Basumatary helped in elimination of three terrorists in Kupwara. On night of October 28, 2013, subedar Prakash Chand was leading an anti-infiltration patrol from Bhim Post to Kaman Post at Baramulla district of Jammu and Kashmir.

The patrol came under fire from across the LoC. While leading his men to safety he succumbed to a splinter injury.

Also among the awardees are two naval officers who sacrificed their lives trying to save fellow submariners onboard INS Sindhuratna in February. Lieutenant Commanders Manoran Kumar and Kapish Singh Muwal will be posthumously awarded the Shaurya Chakra. Their courage ensured the survival of 94 crew members and safety of the submarine.

“They limited the damage area preventing the spread of fire to the battery compartment, obviating an extremely dangerous possibility of damage to entire submarine,” a navy spokesman said.

The country’s largest paramilitary force, the CRPF bagged 71 gallantry medals. “It is the largest haul of gallantry medals by any force on single occasion which clearly reflects the bravery of our personnel,” said force’s Inspector General (operations) Zulfikar Hassan.

PREZ’S MEDAL FOR CBI’S COAL SCAM PROBE’S CHIEF INVESTIGATOR

The CBI’s deputy inspector general (DIG) Ravi Kant, who leads the agency’s Supreme Court monitored probe into alleged irregularities in coal block allocations during 1993-2009, has been awarded the President’s police medal for meritorious service.

Along with him, 23 other CBI officials were awarded either the President’s police medal for meritorious service or police medal for distinguished service.

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