The news of the death of Indian Army Major K P Vinay in a gun-battle with the militants in Jammu and Kashmir on Tuesday has plunged his family in Hyderabad in grief.
A pall of gloom descended on Vinay's house at Premavathipet in Rajendranagar area of Greater Hyderabad when the defence authorities informed the family about his death around 12.30 pm on Tuesday.
The family members were shell-shocked as he was supposed to return home later this month and proceed to Bangalore for his marriage on October 29.
On a tip-off about the movement of militants, the 30-year-old Major Vinay rushed to Tanmarg in Baramulla district leading an assault team of soldiers. As they cordoning off Rajwali forest where the militants were holed up, the latter fired indiscriminately. Bullets pierced through Major Vijay's head and chest killing him instantaneously.
Major Vinay's elder brother received the sad news when the unit officer called up from Kashmir. His father K R Prabhakar answered the telephone but the person on the other line speaking from Kashmir wanted to talk to his elder brother. So, Prabhakar gave the receiver to his elder son Vikram. The next instant, Vikram told his father that Vijay was shot in his head and died. His mother Jayanti almost fainted and could not believe the sad news.
Hailing from Bangalore, Prabhakar moved to Hyderabad two decades ago after joining the National Academy of Agriculture Research Management as a video programme officer. He retired two years ago and settled at Bhavani Colony at Premavathipet.
Born on March 18, 1977 at Bangalore, Vinay was in eighth standard when his family moved to Hyderabad. He joined Vasavi Public School and studied Intermediate (+2) at A V College in the city. He joined the National Defence Academy in 1994. He preferred the Army though he had the option of joining the Air Force. He was commissioned in the Army in 1999 and participated in the Kargil war. He was promoted to the rank of Major three years ago and he was posted with 34 Rashtriya Rifles in Kashmir to serve in anti-insurgency operations for the mandatory two-year period.
Vinay had called up his father last Saturday (September 29) asking him to send him a few more invitation cards for distribution among his friends. Prabhakar sent the cards and asked him to return soon as the family had to go to Bangalore for the wedding. Vinay had told his father that he would not be able to stay for long after marriage and would have to return to Kashmir to join duty. He was also supposed to go to USA for a conference on anti-terrorism in December 2007.
The bride's family had come from Bangalore when the news of the killing of Major Vinay reached them. They were also shattered by the tragedy.
Major Vinay will be cremated with full military honours in the city.