Army doctor killed in Kabul attack gets Ashok ChakraBy IANS
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
NEW DELHI - Major Laishram Jyotin Singh, a doctor with the army who died fighting terrorists in an attack on the Indian embassy in Kabul, will be conferred the country’s highest peacetime gallantry medal, the Ashok Chakra, posthumously during the 62nd Republic Day parade Wednesday.
One of his family members is expected to receive the medal from President Pratibha Patil, but the defence ministry has not been intimated by the family on who will be present at the Republic Day parade to receive the honour.
Ministry officials said the army has made alternative plans for the commanding officer of Singh’s regiment to receive the medal if no family member was available.
Singh, born in 1972, was commissioned in the Army Medical Corps in February 2003 as a short service commissioned officer. He was later granted permanent commission in April 2007 and was posted in the Indian embassy in Kabul since Feb 13 last year.
Thirteen days after his posting, a guarded residential compound of the embassy — housing six army medical officers, four paramedics and two other army officers — was attacked by heavily armed suicide bombers.
A terrorist, after killing three security guards, entered the compound to kill any survivors. The terrorist proceed to fire burst of Kalshnikov rounds into the individual rooms and started throwing hand grenades.
In the melee, five unarmed officers took shelter in one of the rooms which was subjected to grenade attack and the fire on its roof spread consequently to the bathroom where another group of five officers was sheltered.
Singh crawled out from under the debris of his room and charged with bare hands at the armed terrorist and pinned him down.
He continued to grapple with the terrorist and did not let him go till he panicked and detonated his suicide vest, resulting in his Singh’s instant death.
“Maj Laishram Jyotin Singh gave up his life for the sake of five of his colleagues, one of whom unfortunately was still charred to death, and another succumbed to his injuries five days later. His sacrifice, in addition, also saved the lives of two officers, and four paramedics and two Afghan civilians still alive within the compound,” his medal citation said.
Singh was named for the award of Ashok Chakra (posthumous) on the eve of Independence Day last year.