Captain Vikram Batra, who posthumously gained the Param Vir Chakra – India’s highest award for bravery |
July 7, 1999, was the day Captain Vikram Batra (PVC), laid down his life within the service of his nation.
The towering peaks of the Himalayan Mountains have challenged man’s capability to outlive in excessive situations for hundreds of years.
Waging conflict at excessive altitude has confirmed to be a extra daunting activity. The excessive altitude surroundings has posed the identical distinctive challenges to troopers all through historical past, from Alexander the Nice’s Himalayan expedition within the fourth century B.C. to the Indo-Pakistan Kargil Battle in 1999.
This was the conflict wherein Captain Batra fought with nice distinction, finally making the last word sacrifice for his nation, and in doing so, being posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra – The Indian Armed Forces’ highest award for gallantry.
Batra was born on 9 September 1974, in a small city in Palampur, Himachal Pradesh. He was the third baby of Girdhari Lal Batra, a authorities college principal, and Kamal Kanta Batra, a college trainer. He was the eldest of dual sons, and was born fourteen minutes earlier than his brother, named Vishal.
In 1996, he handed the CDS examination and subsequently acquired a name for an interview on the Companies Choice Board (SSB) at Allahabad and was chosen. He was among the many prime 35 candidates within the Order of Benefit. After finishing a yr (session 1995—96) in the direction of the diploma of MA in English, he left the College to hitch the Indian Navy Academy.
After finishing his 19-month coaching course, he graduated from the IMA on 6 December 1997 and was commissioned as a lieutenant into the Indian Military. He was commissioned into the thirteenth battalion of the Jammu and Kashmir Rifles (13 JAK Rif).
Kargil – Operation Vijay
In the summertime of 1999, Pakistan and India engaged in excessive altitude fight in Kargil, a area within the disputed state of Kashmir. Pakistani forces occupied peaks in Indian-held territory, dominating the lone street that linked India to the distant reaches of the Kashmir state.
The Indian Military confronted the formidable activity of defeating an enemy entrenched atop commanding heights. A marketing campaign that lasted seventy-four days and value both sides greater than a thousand casualties concluded with India accountable for the peaks round Kargil.
The excessive altitude surroundings decided the character of the battle and formed the conduct of the marketing campaign.
The mix of skinny air, chilly climate and rugged mountains has dramatic results on males and their tools.
Decreased oxygen results in quite a lot of physiological adjustments and diseases, a few of which may show deadly. Low air stress alters the accuracy and vary of each weaponry and plane. Chilly climate incapacitates troopers and degrades tools.
On June 1, 1999, Captain Batra’s unit, 13 JAK RiF, proceeded to the Kargil Sector on the eruption of a war-like state of affairs in Kargil, Drass and Batalik sub-sectors from the place he was despatched alongside together with his firm on the primary strategic and daring operation to recapture the primary peak of utmost significance – Level 5140, which was at an altitude of 17,000 ft.
Upon reaching Level 5140, main an organization of troops, he encountered the commander of the Pakistani-backed terrorists on radio. The enemy commander challenged him by saying, “Why have you ever come Shershah (Vikram’s nick identify given by his commanding officer), you’ll not return.”
Captain Batra, being the final particular person to again away from a combat, replied, “We will see inside one hour, who stays on the highest.”
Yeh dil maange extra!
Batra determined to method the hill from the rear, aiming to shock the enemy,and to chop off their withdrawal route.
Batra fired three rockets in the direction of the bunkers on the east aspect of the function, earlier than attacking them. He and his males ascended the sheer rock-cliff, however because the group neared the highest, the enemy pinned them on the face of the naked cliff with machine gun fireplace.
Batra, together with 5 of his males, climbed up and after reaching the highest, hurled two grenades on the machine gun submit. Batra then killed three enemy troopers single-handedly in shut fight. He was critically injured within the course of, however insisted on regrouping his males to proceed with the mission.
He continued to steer his troops, after which charged on the subsequent enemy place, capturing Level 5140. In all its actions, his firm killed a minimum of eight Pakistani intruders and recovered a heavy anti-aircraft machine gun. The remaining enemy troopers fled.
At 0435 hours, Batra radioed his command submit, saying the phrases “Yeh dil mange extra!”
The seize of Level 5140 set in movement a string of successes, such because the captures of Level 5100, Level 4700, Junction Peak and the Three Pimple Advanced.
After the seize of Level 5140, Batra was promoted to the rank of captain. Basic Ved Prakash Malik, the then Chief of Military Workers, referred to as to congratulate him. All throughout the nation, his triumph was being performed out on tv screens.
Captain Batra He volunteered himself for a 3rd essential operation, recapturing Level 4875 which was at an altitude of 17,000 ft and had a gradient of 80 levels.
He attacked the height alongside together with his firm and one other led by Captain Anuj Nayyar, MVC. They gave the enemy a troublesome time, killed a variety of enemy troops and re-captured the height on July 5, 1999.
The enemy counter attacked the height on July 7 1999, however he retaliated the counter assault with vigour.
Within the warmth of the battle, one among his junior officers (Lieutenant Naveen) was critically injured and he instantly went to his rescue. Whereas dragging Lieutenant Naveen again underneath cowl, he pleaded to Captain Batra to let him proceed the combat regardless of his accidents to which Captain Batra replied, “Tu baal bachedaar hai! Hatt jaa peeche.” (You have got children and a spouse to take care of! Get again).
Batra uncovered himself to enemy fireplace to pull the injured soldier to security, and within the course of was shot within the chest by an enemy sniper from very shut vary, and a split-second later, by a splinter from an RPG which hit him within the head.
Batra collapsed subsequent to the injured soldier, succumbing to the deadly wounds.
Final sacrifice and Param Vir Chakra
The Param Vir Chakra (PVC) is India’s highest army ornament, awarded for displaying distinguished acts of valour throughout wartime. Param Vir Chakra interprets because the “Wheel of the Final Courageous”, and the award is granted for “most conspicuous bravery within the presence of the enemy”.
Solely 21 have been awarded over the 75 years India has been an impartial nation. 14 of these have been awarded posthumously – together with the one awarded to Captain Vikram Batra:
CAPTAIN VIKRAM BATRA
13 JAMMU AND KASHMIR RIFLES (IC 57556)
Throughout ‘Operation Vijay’, on 20 June 1999, Captain Vikram Batra, Commander Delta Firm was tasked to assault Level 5140. Captain Batra together with his firm skirted across the function from the East and sustaining shock reached inside assaulting distance of the enemy.
Captain Batra reorganized his column and motivated his males to bodily assault the enemy positions. Main from the entrance, he in a daredevil assault, pounced on the enemy and killed 4 of them in a hand-to hand combat.
On 7 July 1999, in one other operation within the space Pt 4875, his firm was tasked to clear a slim function with sharp cuttings on both aspect and closely fortified enemy defences that lined the one method to it. For fast operation, Captain Batra assaulted the enemy place alongside a slim ridge and engaged the enemy in a fierce hand –to-hand combat and killed 5 enemy troopers at level clean vary.
Regardless of sustaining grave accidents, he crawled in the direction of the enemy and hurled grenades clearing the place with utter disregard to his private security, main from the entrance, he rallied his males and pressed on the assault and achieved a close to unimaginable army activity within the face of heavy enemy fireplace.
The officer, nonetheless, succumbed to his accidents. Impressed by his daredevil act, his troops fell upon the enemy with vengeance, annihilated them and captured Level 4875.
Captain Vikram Batra, thus, displayed probably the most conspicuous private bravery and management of the best order within the face of the enemy and made the supreme sacrifice within the highest traditions of the Indian Military.
— Gazette of India Notification: No. 16 – Press/2000
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