HindustanTimes Sat,30 Aug 2014

Gallantry awards for ITPB men's role in Herat attack

Manpreet Randhawa, Hindustan Times  Chandigarh, June 05, 2014
First Published: 09:20 IST(5/6/2014) | Last Updated: 10:37 IST(5/6/2014)

Three Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) personnel hailing from Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand will be awarded the President’s Police Gallantry medal for thwarting the suicide attack on the Indian consulate in Herat in Afghanistan on May 23.

Sources in the MHA revealed that inspector Manjit Singh from Sonepat in Haryana, constable Rakesh Kumar from Shamli in Uttar Pradesh and constable Praveen Kumar from Pauri Garhwal in Uttarakhand were at the forefront in neutralising the suicide attack by the Taliban militia.

In what is touted as the fourth major fidayan attack on the Indian missions in recent times, four Taliban suicide attackers tried to force entry into the Indian consulate at Herat at about 3.30am on May 23, by launching a rocket-propelled grenade (RPG) over its wall. Preliminary inquiries suggest that the four suicide attackers were supported by Lashkar-e-Taiba, a terrorist outfit active in south Asia, operating primarily from Pakistan, sources in the MHA said.

Constables Rakesh and Praveen, who stood guard at the consulate’s entrance, returned the fire killing one of the attackers on the spot. Meanwhile, inspector Manjit also reached the spot and instructed the ITBP troops to neutralise the remaining three attackers. They were later killed in the exchange of fire between the two groups which lasted till noon.

Deputy commandant Vivek Kumar Pandey, spokesman of the ITBP, said the director general of police (DGP), ITBP, decided to recommend names of five personnel to the MHA for the medal. He added, “The DG has sought two more names from Herat, of the ITBP personnel who killed the attackers.”

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