J&K cops, CRPF troopers win most medals for ops
Naresh Kumar, an assistant CRPF commandant who has led quick action teams of the paramilitary force during gunbattles, has received his seventh gallantry medal within four years.Updated: Aug 15, 2020 00:18 IST
Jammu & Kashmir police and paramilitary Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel have bagged a bulk of gallantry medals this Independence Day--81 and 55 out of 215--on the back of successful counter-insurgency operations in the Union Territory, the home ministry said on Friday.
Naresh Kumar, an assistant CRPF commandant who has led quick action teams of the paramilitary force during gunbattles, has received his seventh gallantry medal within four years. Officials said Kumar, 35, has taken part in many operations in which terrorists were gunned down. CRPF spokesperson M Dhinakaran described Kumar as “an officer with the sharp tactical acumen and indomitable courage”.
Indian Police Service (IPS) officers Sandeep, Gurinderpal Singh, and Atul Kumar Goel, who are posted in Jammu & Kashmir insurgency-hit South Kashmir, have got the medal for gallantry for the first time. Two other IPS officers from the Union Territory, deputy inspector general Vidhi Kumar Birdi, who is on deputation with the National Investigation Agency (NIA), and Tejinder Singh, have been awarded the medal for a second and third time.
Goel arrested suspended police officer Davinder Singh in January this year while he was ferrying two Hizb-ul-Mujahideen terrorists in his car to Jammu. Davinder Singh has since been charge-sheeted for anti-India activities.
“Among the majority of the 215 gallantry awards, 123 personnel are being awarded for their gallant action in Jammu & Kashmir, 29 personnel for their gallant action in Left Wing Extremism (LWE) affected areas and eight personnel for their gallant action in the north-east region,” the ministry said in a statement.
Security forces have eliminated over 130 terrorists till July end this year. The recruitment of locals in terror ranks has come down due to action against terrorists.
As many as 23 Uttar Pradesh police personnel have also got the gallantry medal. They include seven members of an inspector general Asim Arun-led team that killed terror suspect Saifullah in Lucknow in March 2017. The Delhi police have 16 awardees, Maharashtra (16) and Jharkhand (12). The remaining recipients are from the other states, union territories, and central armed police forces.
As many as 80 officers from across the country have been awarded the President’s Police Medal for distinguished services while 631 have received the Police Medal for meritorious services. In all, 926 police personnel have been given medals in three categories.
CRPF’s deputy inspector general, Annie Abraham, who has served in Jammu & Kashmir, is among the recipients of the medal for distinguished service. Eight Intelligence Bureau (IB) and six Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officers have also received the medal. Among 631 officers awarded the medal for meritorious services, 26 are from CBI and 28 from IB.
Abdul Rashid Kalas has been awarded Kirti Chakra posthumously while deputy inspector general Amit Kumar of the Jammu & Kashmir police has been decorated with Shaurya Chakra. The two were involved in a counter-insurgency operation following the 2019 Pulwama attack. Three Jaish-e-Mohammad terrorists were killed in the operation.
Central Industrial Security Force officers Mahaveer Prasad Godara, Eranna Nayaka, Mahendra Kumar Paswan and Satish Prasad Kushwaha have also been awarded Shaurya Chakra posthumously. They died while trying to douse fires in Delhi in March 2019 and in Mumbai in September 2019.