‘I love you’, says Army Major’s wife in final farewell
For 27-year-old Nikita Kaul, it was the toughest goodbye of her life.
Kaul’s husband Indian Army Major Vibhuti Shankar Dhoundiyal was killed in a gun battle with Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama on Monday.
In a video, Kaul is seen standing beside the Tricolour-draped coffin of her husband as she is surrounded by people mourning his death. She is seen looking at the coffin with the smiling photo of her 34-year-old husband, blowing a kiss and bending over to say “I love you.”
Earlier in the day, Kaul paid her tributes to Major Dhoundiyal, who belonged to the 55 Rashtriya Rifles, with a salute. “I am not helpless. My husband was a brave heart,” Kaul, who works in a multinational company in New Delhi, said.
WATCH | ‘I love you,’ says wife of Pulwama martyr in heartbreaking farewell
Kaul, who had left Dehradun on Monday morning, was the first to be informed about the major’s death by army officials.
Three other army personnel, a policeman, and a civilian were also killed while a group of senior security officials, including south Kashmir’s deputy inspector general of police and an Indian Army brigadier, was wounded during the nearly 18-hour operation.
The gun battle took place about 15km away from the spot where 40 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) troopers died in a suicide attack on a convoy by JeM militant Adil Ahmed Dar last Thursday.
They were married in April last year and Major Dhoundiyal had made his plans to celebrate their first wedding anniversary at home.
“Since the wedding, we had been thinking of putting up pictures of their marriage in this room. We even had them ready but were not able to put them up,” his sister Vaishnavi said sitting in the major’s room.
“The thought scares us now that instead of the couple, a photograph of our brother will hang on this wall.”
Thousands of people, including chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, came to the major’s home in Uttarakhand’s capital Dehradun on Tuesday to pay their last respects.
Kaul was seen near the coffin as slogans of “Shaheed Dhoundiyal Amar Rahein” and “Vande Mataram” were heard in the background.
His funeral will be conducted with full military honours in Haridwar later on Tuesday.
Major Dhoundiyal is also survived by his grandmother, mother and three elder sisters. He was the youngest in the family.