Vice Admiral Sree Harilal Sarma passes away at 99
Vice Admiral Sree Harilal Sarma, who was the flag officer commanding the Indian Navy’s Eastern Fleet tasked with cutting the maritime communications between West and East Pakistan (Bangladesh) in the 1971 war, passed away at Odisha’s Bhubaneswar on Monday. He was 99.
Sarma, who celebrated his 99th birthday on December 5, also fought the 1965 war with Pakistan and the Second World War. A Param Vishisht Seva Medal awardee, he was on board the INS Rajput when it destroyed PNS Ghazi, a Pakistani submarine, near Visakhapatnam in 1971.
Chief minister Naveen Patnaik called Sarma one of Odisha’s illustrious sons while paying tribute to him. “Deeply saddened to learn about the passing away of one of #Odisha’s illustrious sons, Vice Admiral S H Sarma, PVSM. The veteran soldier led from the front during many battles India has fought. My thoughts & prayers are with the bereaved family and friends,” he tweeted.
In a tweet, Lest We Forget India, an organisation that honours the sacrifices of the Indian armed forces, said Sarma played a pivotal role during the 1971 India-Pakistan war.