Security personnel killed in J&K’s Handwara operation cremated


A Colonel, a Major and another soldier, who were killed in an 18-hour anti-militancy operation in north Kashmir’s Handwara area, have been cremated with full military honours.

They were among the five security personnel killed during the operation on Saturday night.

Col. Ashutosh Sharma was cremated in Jaipur on Tuesday morning.

His wife Pallavi Sharma and brother lit the funeral pyre at a cremation ground in the presence of other family members and Army officers.

Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and South Western Army chief Lt Gen Alok Kler paid tributes to Col Sharma at Jaipur Military Station’s 61, Cavalry Ground.

Soldier Welfare Minister Pratap Singh, MP Rajyavardhan Rathore, Jaipur Collector Jogaram and other senior officials of the Army laid wreaths and paid their tributes.

A unit of the South Western Command gave a guard of honour to Col. Sharma and three volley gun shots were fired. Colonel Sharma was the second Commanding Officer of the 21 Rashtriya Rifles who lost his life in combating terrorism.

The mortal remains of Major Anuj Sood were consigned to flames with full military honours on Tuesday.

Major Sood’s mortal remains had arrived from Srinagar Monday afternoon.

Slogans like Vande Mataram, Bharat Mata Ki Jai, Major Anuj Amar Rahe were raised as the Army officer’s body, wrapped in tricolour, was taken to the cremation ground at Mani Majra here from his residence in Panchkula in a bedecked Army vehicle.

Before the cremation, floral wreaths were laid on the mortal remains by many serving and retired Army officers.

Several senior Army officers and Major Sood’s family members including his wife, father, sister Harshita, who is also an Army officer, were present during the cremation. A gun salute was given to him.

Major Sood’s father, Brigadier Chandrakant Sood (retd), told the media that the news of the death left him shocked, but at the same time he was proud of the supreme sacrifice the officer had made for his motherland.

“He was a true son of the nation,” he said at his Panchkula home.

Naik Rajesh Kumar was cremated with full military honours at his home village in Punjab’s Mansa district on Monday evening.

Villagers in Rajrana near Sardulgarh chanted slogans like Vande Mataram and Bharat Mata Ki Jai as the soldier’s body, wrapped in tricolor, was taken to the cremation ground.

His father Ram Kumar said he was proud of his son for laying down his life for the country.

Sangrur MP Bhagwant Mann, MLA Nazar Singh Manshahia and district officials were present at the funeral.

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