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This article was first published 8 years ago  » News » 'Capt Pawan refused injury leave to lead his men in Pampore'

'Capt Pawan refused injury leave to lead his men in Pampore'

Source: PTI
Last updated on: February 22, 2016 16:20 IST
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A tearful adieu was given to 23-year-old Captain Pawan Kumar on Monday. The brave soldier died fighting militants in Kashmir’s Pulwama district on Sunday, with his last rites performed at his native village with full military honours.

Army officers and soldiers pay tributes to Captain Pawan Kumar and Captain Tushar Mahajan, who were killed in the encounter with terrorists at Pampore. Photograph: Umar Ganie/

On the army and the state government’s appeal, Jat protesters had cleared up the roads leading to the martyr’s village.

The army had appealed to the people of Haryana to extend support in giving a “befitting farewell” to the brave son of the soil.

Earlier the martyr’s body draped in the Tricolour was flown from Pathankot, where a wreath laying ceremony was held.

In a statement, a defence spokesman said, “After cautiously evacuating all civilians from the premises to safety, Captain Pawan Kumar led his team to deliberately clear the building in which the terrorists had been holed up. This initial operation was fraught with danger as the only way to ascertain the location of the terrorists was to close in and draw their fire.”

“Capt Pawan Kumar led his men from the front and drew a fatal volley of fire, which the daring commando and his team quickly retaliated. He later succumbed to his grievous injuries but not before fixing the location of these terrorists thereby facilitating the progress of further operations.”

“Born on Army Day on January 15, 1993, this 23-year-old was destined to be a part of it and in the exemplary display of raw courage, leadership par excellence and esprit-de-corps, he has become a part of military folklore,” the statement said.

A wreath laying ceremony was held for the martyred soldiers at Srinagar before their bodies were airlifted to their villages. Photograph: Umar Ganie/

Earlier, the young commando was given a befitting farewell by his colleagues in a solemn ceremony at BB Cantonment in Srinagar which was also attended by officials from police, Border Security Force and the Central Reserve Police Force.

Paying tributes to the martyrs, Lt Gen Satish Dua GOC Chinar Corps saluted the courage and selflessness of both the soldiers and said that their cause will be taken to its logical conclusion.

Speaking about Capt Pawan Kumar, he said, “He had voluntarily taken upon himself to lead his men into this most difficult phase of the operation. His commitment to his men, duty and the uniform he so proudly donned, can be gauged from the fact that despite having been wounded in an earlier encounter with terrorists only last month, he had refused to proceed on sick leave to be with his team for this operation. They have done the nation proud and the nation salutes them”.

A gun salute was given to the martyr by the army at Badhana village, even as his pyre was lit by his father Rajbir Singh, a school teacher.

Rajbir had earlier said that he had one child which he gave to the army and to the nation. “No father can be prouder,” Singh had said about the supreme sacrifice made by his son.

The army paid their respects to their fallen. Photograph: Umar Ganie/

Despite Haryana, including Jind district being hit by the Jat stir, a large number of people turned up to pay tributes to the son-of-the-soil.

Senior officials from the army and senior ministers of the Haryana government -- Captain Abhimanyu and Om Prakash Dhankar, besides state Bharatiya Janata Party president Subhash Barala and opposition party leader Indian National Lok Dal leader Ramphal Majra paid their last respect to the officer.

Capt Abhimanyu, who was seen wiping off his tears while paying tributes to the officer, said that his sacrifice had taught a lesson to the youth of the state that if one has to lay down his life, it should be for the sake of one’s country.

“I salute the great son-of-the-soil. Future generations will forever remain indebted to him,” Abhimanyu said.

Kumar, an officer of the elite Para unit, was among the three army personnel from the unit who lost their lives in the fierce encounter with militants holed up inside a government building in Pampore town.

The mother of Captain Tushar Mahajan weeps as she touches the coffin of her son Tushar during his wreath laying ceremony in Udhampur. Photograph: Mukesh Gupta/Reuters

Captain Tushar Mahajan, 26, who hailed from Udhampur in Jammu and Kashmir, was leading his team in the Pampore operation when he was martyred.

Lance Naik Om Prakash, 32, whose team had closed in on the hiding terrorists, was also injured during the gunbattle and succumbed to his injuries later. He had been earlier awarded with the “Asadharan Suraksha Seva Praman Patra” by the prime minister on August 15, 2013 for gallantry in counter-terrorist operations.

Lance Naik Om Prakash hailed from Shimla, Himachal Pradesh and is survived by his parents, wife and two daughters aged 7 and 3 years.

The young captain of the Special Forces was an inspiring leader who in spite of being injured earlier in an anti-terrorist operation went on to volunteer for more operations.

The corps commander also paid his tributes to the martyred CRPF personnel and one EDI employee Abdul Gani Mir, who lost their lives in the terror attack.

-- With inputs from Mukhtar Ahmad

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