Last rites of India’s oldest-surviving Ashok Chakra recipient held

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

SHILLONG - India’s oldest surviving recipient of Ashok Chakra, the highest peace-time gallantry award, Lt.Col. Man Bahadur Rai was Tuesday accorded full military honours at his funeral in Assam’s Jorhat district, an Assam Rifles statement said.

Rai, 95, passed away Monday at Jorhat.

Director General of Assam Rifles Lt. Gen. Rameshwar Roy expressed his deep condolences to the family of Rai.

Rai served in 8 Assam Rifles during the 1960s. In 1961, he was awarded the Ashok Chakra for displaying exemplary courage in fighting insurgents in Nagaland.

According to the statement, Rai had led a platoon through two hostile positions into the heart of insurgents’ stronghold and was successful in dislodging them from their position.

“In yet another operation on May 3, 1961, he led a platoon against strongly fortified area held by insurgents. The fortified area was situated on top of a steep ravine. On locating the hostile position, Lt. Col. Man Bahadur Rai threw hand grenades, killing a few hostiles and physically charged the position, killing two more hostiles, Assam Rifles spokesman A.K. Chaudhuri said.

The auditorium at Assam Rifles headquarters here is named after Rai.

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