Captain Vikram Batra – The Legend of Kargil war was from a beautiful town of Palampur in Himachal Pradesh. Born on 9th September 1974, commisioned as a lieutenant in Indian Army on 6th December 1997 in 13th battalion of J&K Rifles (13 JAK Rifles). On completion of his training at Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh he was posted to Baramulla district of Jammu & Kashmir where militant activities were on the peak. During his posting there Batra has several encounters with militants. In one such encounter, a bullet grazed his shoulder and hit one of his soldier behind him. He got very disturbed knowing that the bullet was for him. He ordered his soldiers to catch all the militants, and by morning they cleared them all.
Later he told this to his elder sister on phone:
“Didi, it was meant for me and I lost my man”
He used to visit Palampur, his home and go to some beautiful place around it. His last leave was during Holi festival in 1999. This was the time when one of his relatives told him to be careful during the war but he replied:
“I’ll either come back after raising the Indian flag in victory or return wrapped in it. But I’ll come for sure”
After that, he returned to his battalion 13 JAK Rifles. On June 5 the battalion received orders to move to towards Dras sector. He told his mom not to worry about him, he is absolutely fine and will call her once in 10 days. These were the last words he spoke to his mother:
“Mommy, ek dum fit hoon, fikar mat karna”
Capturing Point 5140
At Dras sector they went on capturing peaks which other battalions were unable to capture even after two or three attempts. After which the main task of capturing Point 5140 which assigned to 13 JAK Rifles. This was was strategically very important to capture. On 18th June they carried out a detailed scrutiny of this Point 5410. Strategically planning out everything Batra decided to stun the enemy by attacking from the rear position, Before reaching bunker and attacking them he fired 3 rockets. His men were also climbing on the sheer cliff but the enemy pinned them with their machine guns. Batra along with 5 of his men kept on climbing and reached the top where he single-handedly killed 3 enemy soldiers. In all this action his Batra and his men killed at least 8 Pakistani intruders and recovered heavy anti-aircraft machine gun. This was a very good news for Indian army as no casualties were there.
Capturing Point 4875
After this, they were assigned to capture Point 4875. On 1 July 1999 Major S Vijay Bhaskar and Lt. Col. Joshi formulated a plan and discussed it with 13 JAK Rifles. Multi Barrel Rockets, 155mm Bofors Howitzers, and 105 mm Field Guns were used to bombard on that point. Captain Vikram Batra suffering from fever and fatigue was lying down in his sleeping bag as ordered by his Commanding Officer but still, he stood up and said: “I will go up sir”.
He was known as Sher Shah among the enemy soldiers and when the tired Indian soldiers heard this name over wireless that he is joining them, a cheer went up among them. Fighting bravely with the enemy they gained the foothold on the ledge. But still, an enemy machine gun nest was in action on the same ledge. Batra learned that one of his men got shot. He suddenly faced towards Sub. Raghunath and shouted, “Ap aur main usko evacuate karengey”(we will evacuate him). But when he saw bullets flying around them he pushed Subedar to the safer side and took his place saying “You have a family to go back to, I am not even married yet”. He exposed himself to enemy bullets while evacuating his men. Suddenly a bullet from sniper hit him in the chest and after that, a splinter hit him in the head. Captain Batra collapsed next to the injured soldier. He was posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra.
On the internet, you can find many videos dedicated to him. Below is a song by Richa Sharma dedicated to Captain Vikram Batra.