Mar 25, 2014

Three officers honoured with Kirti Chakra

Three officers, including an IAF officer who died while saving Uttarakhand flood victims, a naval officer who non-stop sailed around the world and an Army Major who killed three terrorists, were on Saturday awarded the Kirti Chakra, the second highest peacetime gallantry award.
 A Civil Engineer of the Border Roads Organisation who lost his life while saving his three colleagues in an accident in Assam and a young IAF jawan who saved a village from burning were among the 10 personnel who were awarded the Shaurya Chakra by President Pranab Mukherjee.
Wg Cdr Darryl Castelino received the award posthumously for his role in Op Rahat in Uttarakhand where his Mi-17V5 chopper crashed with 20 personnel on board after he had helped in rescuing lives of more than 80 people.
Maj Mahesh Kumar of Punjab Regiment got the award for his gallant acts in counter-insurgency operations in Jammu and Kashmir where he eliminated four terrorists in three separate incidents.
In one of the operations, he killed one of the two terrorists who were trying to run away on a cycle and tried to attack him with a grenade.
Cdr Abhilash Tomy received the Kirti Chakra for completing world voyage on his sail ship non-stop and without any external support in 151 days.
The Shaurya Chakra awardees' list also includes Lt Col Bikramjeet Singh, who lost his life in a suicide attack on 16 Cavalry Unit at Samba near Jammu.
The officer was given the award for coordinating close cordon on a terrorist who had entered the unit despite being "unarmed" and saving the families staying in the Officers' Mess.
Junior Engineer Manish of BRO was honoured posthumously for sacrificing his life while trying to save three of his colleagues when they were caught in a tractor accident during the construction of a road in Assam on October 26, 2012.
Aircraftsman Murali Kannan received the award posthumously after he lost his life while dousing a fire in a house in a village in Dinjan of Assam which could have caused great damage had it not been combated in time by the young soldier.
Flying Officer K Praveen, co-pilot of Castelino, received the Shaurya Chakra for rescuing people in flood-hit Uttarakhand before he died in the fatal chopper crash.
Rifleman Ran Bahadur Gurung of 5/5 Gorkha Rifles sacrificed his life while fighting a group of terrorists in Kupwara district of Jammu and Kashmir and was awarded the Shaurya Chakra posthumously.
Army's ADG (Public Information) Maj Gen Bobby Cherian Matthews was awarded the Ati Vishist Seva Medal for distinguished services.

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