This Article is From Jan 25, 2017

Major Gets Second Highest Gallantry Award For Surgical Strikes

Army conducted surgical strikes on terror launch-pads across the Line of Control on September 29.


  • Gallantry awards for soldiers who crossed Line of Control
  • Surgical strikes carried out on September 29
  • 2 Colonels involved with planning among honorees
New Delhi: 22 soldiers who crossed the Line of Control on the night of September 29 to strike terrorist staging areas have been awarded with some of the country's top gallantry awards. The honorees are from the elite 4 Para and 9 Para Special Forces Regiment.

A Major of 4 Para has been awarded the second-highest peacetime decoration, the Kirti Chakra.

India has said that none of its soldiers were hurt in the top-secret operation, that was revealed hours after it had ended by the army. No details of the individual citations of the soldiers have been released. Three officers and two jawans have been awarded the Shaurya Chakra, the third highest peacetime decoration.

Two Colonels who may have been involved in planning the operations but were not physically deployed have been awarded the Yudh Sewa Medal for distinguished wartime service. 14 others have been awarded the Sena medal for individual acts of exceptional devotion to duty or courage which has special significance for the Army. One of these soldiers, of 9 Para has received a Sena Medal earlier as well.

Details of the surgical strikes have been kept totally classified. How many soldiers took part has not been publicly shared. Army sources said that the soldiers trekked upto two km into Pakistan-Occupied Kashmir. They returned before dawn, after killing dozens of terrorists who were planning strikes in major Indian metros.

The announcement of a surprise raid marked a rare public disclosure by India of a military operation across the de factor border in Jammu and Kashmir. The army has said it has video and photos of the surgical strikes, but does not want to share either publicly.

They came after Prime Minister Narendra Modi warned that the deadly terror attack on an army base in Uri in Kashmir, which left 19 people dead, would not go unpunished.

Lieutenant General Ranbir Singh, then the army's director general of military operations (DGMO), said the strikes were based on "specific and credible information that some terrorist units had positioned themselves ... with an aim to carry out infiltration and terrorist strikes". He said he had called his Pakistani counterpart to inform him of the operation. The government later briefed opposition parties, which backed the mission.

Seven terrorist launch pads were reportedly targeted before the troops returned around 4.30 am. Each terrorist launch pad had 30 to 40 terrorists, said sources, and the army said there were "massive casualties". A combination of ground forces and para commandos were involved.