New Delhi: Major Laishram Jyotin Singh, an Army doctor who died fighting a suicide bomber in Kabul, was Wednesday conferred the country's highest peacetime gallantry medal, Ashok Chakra, posthumously at the 62nd Republic Day parade here.
A family member received the medal from President Pratibha Patil, who conferred the honour at the start of the parade at Rajpath in the heart of the capital.
Born in 1972, Singh was commissioned in the Army Medical Corps in February 2003. He was granted permanent commission in April 2007 and posted with the Indian embassy in Kabul in February last year.
Thirteen days after his posting, a guarded residential compound attached to but away from the embassy -- housing six Army medical officers, four para-medics and two Army officers -- was raided by suicide bombers.
A terrorist killed three security guards and then entered the compound to kill survivors. He opened Kalshnikov gunfire into the individual rooms and hurled grenades.
In the melee, five unarmed officers took shelter in one of the rooms, which came under grenade attack. The roof caught fire and spread to the bathroom where another five officers were sheltered.
Singh crawled out from under the debris of his room and, unarmed, charged at the terrorist and pinned him down.
He continued to grapple with the terrorist and did not let him go till the latter detonated his suicide vest, resulting in his 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 within the compound," it said.