New Delhi, Aug 15 – Eight of the gallantry awards announced on Saturday went to commandos from the special force that conducted a surgical operation along the India-Myanmar border.
This comes as Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, in his address to the armed forces on the eve of Independence Day, lauded the operation.
The list of gallantry awards included two Kirti Chakras, the second highest peacetime decoration.
The winners of Kirti Chakra included Lieutenant Colonel Nectar Sanjenbam of 21 Para SF, who was a part of the operation along the Myanmar border where India attacked at least two camps of terrorists.
Kirti Chakra was also awarded posthumously to Naib Subedar Rajesh Kumar of 30 Rashtriya Rifles, who sacrificed his life while fighting terrorists in Handwara of Jammu and Kashmir.
Shaurya Chakra, the third highest peacetime decoration, was given to 10 soldiers, five of them posthumously.
The list included Colonel M.N. Rai from Gorkha regiment who died fighting terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir in January.
Navy’s Commander Mohan Milind Mokashi, Commanding Officer of INS Sumitra, got a Shaurya Chakra for playing a pivotal role in evacuating Indian nationals from Yemen under ‘Operation Rahat’.
The list includes two police officials from Jammu and Kashmir, Mohd. Shafi Sheikh, who was a head constable and Reyaz Ahmad Lone, a constable, both being awarded posthulously.
One officer was given Bar to Sena Medal (Gallantry), while 49 got Sena Medal (Gallantry), two got Nao Sena Medal (Gallantry) and three were named for Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry).
Coast Guard personnel were awarded one President’s Tatrakshak Medal and seven Tatrakshak Medals for displaying conspicuous acts of gallantry, distinguished and meritorious services.
In addition, one President’s Tatrakshak Medal was awarded for distinguished service and two Tatrakshak Medal for meritorious service.
Commandant Chandra Shekhar Joshi, commander of Coast Guard ship Rajratan, which was involved in an operation that led to the sinking of a Pakistani boat in December last year, got President’s Tatrakshak Medal.
The president also awarded 20 Mention-in-Despatches to army and paramilitary personnel for their significant contributions in different military operations which include three for ‘Operation Meghdoot’, 12 for ‘Operation Rakshak’, one for ‘Operation Orchid’, one for ‘Operation Hifazat’ and three for ‘Operation Rhino’.