They sacrificed their lives for us, but how many of us actually know their names, let alone know what they did for us? It's high time we learn about these unsung heroes who are India's real stars.
10 Stories Of The Indian Army Heroes Will Make You Proud! Heroes are not born with a special power, they are ordinary people like us but do extraordinary things when the situation demands. Similarly, our brave Indian army soldiers have proved it time and again. There are lots of people who say bad things about our defence force, there is no surprise that we do have bad apples in our defence forces, but that is not we are going to talk in this article. This article is dedicated to the real heroes, soldiers who sacrificed their lives for the country and its people.
1. Captain Anuj Nayyar
Anuj Nayyar was an officer of the 17 Jat Regiment of the Indian Army, who was posthumously awarded the Maha Vir Chakra, India’s second highest gallantry award, for exemplary valour in combat during operations in the Kargil War in 1999.
During the initial phase of assault, the Company Commander of Anuj's platoon was injured after which the command of the company fell on Captain Anuj Nayyar. After the initial setback, the Indian assault split into two groups, one led by Captain Vikram Batra and other by Anuj Nayyar. The Pakistani infiltrators had constructed several bunkers on Pt. 4875.
Anuj's company located 4 enemy bunkers and charged the first bunker. During the assault, Anuj fired a Rocket propelled grenade and destroyed the first bunker. The company then charged towards the remaining 3 bunkers during which they came under heavy mortar fire from Pakistani infiltrators.
However, under Anuj's leadership, the company cleared two more bunkers and engaged in numerous hand-to-hand combat. It was while clearing the 4th bunker, that an enemy RPG shell fell directly on Anuj killing him on the spot. This scene was dramatically portrayed in the film LOC Kargil. Soon after Anuj's death, the second Charlie Company, led by Captain Batra, successfully cleared the 4th bunker and secured Pt. 4875. The success of this mission was largely due to the bravery and leadership skills of Captain Anuj Nayyar. The success of this mission paved the way for the Indian recapture of Tiger Hill.
2. Colonel Neelakantan Jayachandran Nair
Colonel Neelakantan Jayachandran Nair (popularly known as “NJ” ) was one of the outstanding and decorated officers of the Indian Army. Nair commissioned into 16 Maratha Light Infantry on 18 June 1971. In 1993, 16 Maratha Light Infantry was deployed in Nagaland. 20 Dec 1993 while heading an advance party of the battalion, his convoy was ambushed by Naga rebels. Col NJ Nair displayed indomitable courage in leading the attack personally to break the ambush and sacrificed his life defending his men. For his outstanding bravery, Colonel Neelakantan Jayachandran Nair was awarded with the Ashoka Chakra and Kirti Chakra. He is the only Indian to have won both the prestigious awards.
3. Brigadier Kuldip Singh Chandpuri
Remember Sunny Deol in the movie Border? Public knowledge may be limited on this, but Deol's role was actually an adaptation of a real-life hero, Brigadier (Retd.) Kuldip Singh Chandpuri. Brigadier Kuldip Singh is known for his exemplary display of leadership skills during the Battle of Longewala, for which he was awarded the second highest gallantry award of the land, the Maha Vir Chakra. Brigadier Kuldip Singh MVC, VSM is a retired officer in the Indian Army. He is known for his heroic leadership in the famous Battle of Longewala, for which he was awarded Maha Vir Chakra by the Government of India.
Serving as Major at that time, Mr Singh led his soldiers to defend his Longewala post in Rajasthan against the attack by the Pakistani Army during the early phase of the Indo-Pak War of 1971. Longewala was manned by 120 soldiers of the Alfa Company of the 23rd Battalion of the Punjab Regiment, under Major Singh's command.
The soldiers fought against mammoth odds, battling Pakistan's 4 infantry battalions and the 22nd Armoured Regiment. The attack came at 12:30 AM and lasted entire night until help came in the guise of Indian Air Force the next morning. Even though the 23rd Battalion was heavily outnumbered, they persevered and held off the enemy for hours. The IAF then swooped in to destroy 26 tanks and a large number of Pakistan's Armoured Regiment Carriers.
4. Gurbachan Singh Salaria
There are Indians, who have sacrificed their lives in other countries. Among such heroes, Chief Gurbachan Singh Salaria will be always remembered for his sacrifices. After Belgium left Congo, the UN interceded to stop a civil war raging through the African nation. Gurbachan Singh Salaria was a part of the UN’s group to spare the nation from Katangese rebels. He died at a very young age of 26 and that too in an unknown land. Indian government honored Chief Salaria with the Param Vir Chakra, India’s most astounding wartime military honor, for his grit in the Congo War in 1961.
Captain Gurbachan Singh Salaria, PVC (born 29 November 1935; Gurdaspur, Punjab – 5 December 1961) is a military war hero, who was awarded the Param Vir Chakra, India’s highest wartime military award. In the 1988 television serial Param Vir Chakra by Chetan Anand, Captain G.S. Salaria was played by actor Brando Bakshi.
5. Rifleman Jaswant Singh Rawat
Rifleman Jaswant Singh Rawat is an extra-ordinary symbol of bravery. He was a legend in the Indian Army. During Indo- China War of 1962, he was a part of the Fourth Battalion of the Garhwal Rifles. During the war, they were asked to retreat from their position, due to heavy casualty and circumstances. But, Jaswant Singh Rawat stayed back to fight against the Chinese. He fought against them with the utmost intelligence and courage. With the help from two Monpa tribal girls named Sela and Nura, he set up weapons at separate points and maintained a volume of fire that fooled the Chinese into believing that they were faced with a huge battalion.
This went on for three days and it frustrated the Chinese. But, when Chinese captured the man who was supplying rations to Jaswant, Jaswant Singh Rawat shot himself in the head, knowing that he would be captured soon. The Chinese became furious when they learned that they were fighting a lone soldier and then they cut off his head and carried it back to China. However, after the ceasefire, the Chinese commander, impressed by the soldier’s bravery, returned the head along with a brass bust of Jaswant Singh. The bust, created in China to honor the brave Indian soldier, is now installed at the site of the battle. Sela died in a grenade burst and Nura was captured. Jaswant Singh Rawat is the only soldier in the long history of the Indian army, who is known to have risen through the ranks after his death, and this rifleman has been promoted to the rank of Honorary Captain. This great son of India was awarded the Maha Vir Chakra (posthumous).
6. Captain Vikram Batra
Captain Vikram Batra, another hero of Kargil War. He was the key person to recover Peak 5140 situated at a height of 17,000 feet from the enemy. Captain Batra recaptured the Peak 5140 from the enemy. He died in a counterattack by the enemy. Captain Vikram Batra died while saying the words ‘Jai Mata Di’. Captain Batra is also well known in India for using the slogan, ‘Yeh Dil Maange More’ as his signal to communicate mission success.
He was famously known as ‘Sher Shah’ in the intercepted messages of the Pakistan army. Actor Abhishek Bachchan played Batra’s part in the film LOC Kargil. Captain Vikram Batra was posthumously awarded with the Param Vir Chakra, India’s highest and most prestigious award for valour, for his actions during the 1999 Kargil War in Kashmir between India and Pakistan.
Captain Vikram Batra, PVC (9 September 1974 – 7 July 1999) was an officer of the Indian Army, posthumously awarded with the Param Vir Chakra, India’s highest and prestigious award for valour, for his actions during the 1999 Kargil War inKashmir between India and Pakistan.
7. Arun Kumar Vaidya
This Maha Vir Chakra awardee was part of the action during the 1965 war with Pakistan at the Battle of Chawinda where the first Armored Division of the enemy was destroyed. In 1971, Arunkumar Vaidya navigated a dangerous landscape loaded with mines and pushed ahead to refute the Pakistani counter-assault in the the battles of Chakra and Dahira. In the same clash, in the Battle of Barapind, he appropriated tanks crosswise over minefields and got his second Maha Vir Chakra. In 1984, he planned Operation Blue Star, which sought to evict Sikh militants hidden inside the Golden Temple in Amritsar.
8. Nand Singh
During World War 2, Nand Singh led his troops up a steep ridge in Burma and captured major trenches despite carrying multiple injuries. In 1947, upon Independence, he took part in India’s first war with Pakistan. In the same year, he got severely injured in Uri, after which his body was paraded in Pakistan and thrown into a dump. Sadly, his body was never recovered. Nand Singh has the distinction of receiving the British Victoria Cross, the highest and most prestigious award for gallantry awarded to British and Commonwealth forces.
9. Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan
Sandeep Unnikrishnan (15 March 1977 – 28 November 2008) was an officer in the Indian Army serving in the elite Special Action Group of the National Security Guards. He was killed in action during theNovember 2008 Mumbai attacks. He was consequently awarded the Ashoka Chakra, India’s highest peace time gallantry award, on 26 January 2009.
“Do not come up, I will handle them.” These were probably the last words spoken by Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan to his men as he was hit by bullets while engaging terrorists inside the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel during the Black Tornado operation in the Mumbai attacks in 2008. Unnikrishnan was a Major in the Indian Army serving in the elite National Security Guards (NSG). During the operation, when a commando got injured, Major Unnikrishnan arranged for his evacuation and started chasing the terrorists himself. It was during this chase that he got seriously injured and succumbed to his injuries.
10. Lt. Arun Khetarpal
During the 1971 Indo-Pak war, 2nd Lt. Arun Khetarpal’s 17 Poona Horse was ordered to construct a bridge across Basantar river, in the Shakargarh region near the international border with the 47th Indian Infantry Brigade. After building it, engineers were to crack the enemy mine-field. Half-way through, the enemy raided. Even though the mine fields were partly cleared, the regiment advanced, not having considered what laid ahead. By the first light of December 16th, 1971, the army established a link-up at the bridge for the tanks to pass. At 8am, a Pakistani regiment, sufficiently armoured, confronted the Indian troops. Our troops being outnumbered, the Commander of the squadron requested assistance from 2nd Lt. Khetarpal, who was close to the battle-field.
As soon as the request was relayed, Kheterpal got into enemy’s neck to clean it all! On the way, he overran some strong points and captured many soldiers. During this, his group’s second tank was attacked and the commander was killed, leaving him alone fighting the Pakistanis. But Kheterpal single-handedly went on to ambush the area with his tank. The tank battle followed and 2nd Lt. Khetarpal destroyed four tanks. The Pakistanis then wrecked the other two following tanks and also bombed his tank, flaming it up. Khetarpal, not giving it up, went on to destroy rest of the tanks; after which his own tank blew up. The fearless officer met his death refuting the enemy to step on his land.When his tank was flamed up, the commander of his troop had ordered him to abandon the burning tank, but he proclaimed.
Salute to this super heroes and their respective parents who gave birth to those super heroes .
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