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Capt. Clifford K Nongrum: First and the only Maha Vir Chakra recipient from Meghalaya

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nongrum By Ila Garg

Kargil War Heroes – Part 9

Kargil was the war that can never be forgotten. It took away so many of our brave soldiers with it, but it can never take away the love and respect that we have for them. Born in a Christian family on 7 March 1975 in Shillong, Meghalaya, Captain Keishing Clifford Nongrum was an officer of the 12th Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry. His father, Keishing Peter, worked at State Bank of India while his mother, Saily Nongrum, is a housewife.

Capt. Nongrum is the first and the only person in Meghalaya to have been awarded India’s second highest gallantry award, ‘Maha Vir Chakra’ for his bravery in crucial times of the Kargil war.

His moment of valour came on 1 July 1999 when he and his platoon was assigned the task of capturing Point 4812. He moved ahead from the South-eastern side to attack the enemy. It was nearly an impossible vertical height that he had to climb but with his strong grit and determination, he was able to reach the top with his battalion. There they had to put up with a tough battle.

Capt. Nongrum emerged as a strong leader who charged at the enemy with full force. He subsequently destroyed a bunker all by himself. 35b8g85

Disregarding his own safety, he threw grenades at the bunker and killed six enemy soldiers. He fought hand-to-hand with Pakistani soldiers and tried to snatch the universal machine gun from the bunker. Though severely wounded, Captain Nongrum refused to be evacuated and fought valiantly. Moving through the fire zone, he attacked another bunker before he was killed.

His extraordinary valor and supreme sacrifice can never be wiped off the pages of history.

His father, Keishing Peter has no qualms about waiting five years to get a service station that was promised from the government’s side after his son’s death. Ten years after Kargil victory, an army officer stepped into the Captain’s home to convey the deepest regrets from the President.

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Bust of the Kargil war martyr Capt. Clifford K Nongrum at the Rhino Museum in Jammu and Kashmir city

Keishing Peter says, “Officers told us how he clambered uphill through the night of July 1, charged through enemy fire and lobbed a grenade killing six Pakistani soldiers in the nearest bunker and punched away some more – he was a boxer too – before snatching a machine gun in another.”

“He was always busy motivating students to join the army,” says his mother Saily.

Capt. Nongrum had a great interest in Soccer too apart from boxing. “Soccer honed Clifford’s leadership qualities, but we didn’t realize he was using the sport to be fit to join the Short Service Commission after graduating in political science,” recalls Keishing Peter.

After 16 years of the tragic war, we ought to keep the sacrifice of all our brave-hearts alive.capt_clifford1-1432039709

More in this segment:

Kargil War Heroes – Part 1
Kargil War Heroes – Part 2
Kargil War Heroes – Part 3
Kargil War Heroes – Part 4
Kargil War Heroes – Part 5
Kargil War Heroes – Part 6
Kargil War Heroes – Part 7
Kargil War Heroes – Part 8
Kargil War Heroes – Part 10
Kargil War Heroes – Part 11
Kargil War Heroes – Part 12
Kargil War Heroes – Part 13
Kargil War Heroes – Part 14
Kargil War Heroes – Part 15

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Copyright 2015 NewsGram

  • Bust of Kargil War Martyr, Late Captain Clifford K Nongrum, Maha Vir Chakra was unveiled by the Colonel of the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry Regiment, Lt Gen R N Nair, AVSM, SM at the Rhino Museum, Rilbong, Shillong, Meghalaya on the 19th of May 2015.

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“Yeh Dil Maange More!”..The Glorious Words Of Captain Vikram Batra

Captain Vikram Batra was one of the brave soldiers who laid down his life while serving the country

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Captain Vikram Batra was conferred Param Vir Chakra in 1999 for extraordinary act of courage. Wikimedia Commons
Captain Vikram Batra was conferred Param Vir Chakra in 1999 for extraordinary act of courage. Wikimedia Commons
  • The name of the Sher Shah or the Indian Army legend, Late Captain Vikram Batra can’t be forgotten
  • Many young Indian brave hearts of the army fought ferociously and died fearlessly in the Kargil war
  • During his college days, ‘Dimple Cheema’ was the Captain Vikram Batra’s girlfriend

“I’ll either come back after raising the Indian flag in victory or return wrapped in it, but I will come for sure.”

One of the Late Captain Vikram Batra’s quotes, that sums up the spirit of Bravehearts who fight at the border.

The Kargil war with Pakistan was something that truly revealed the zeal of Indian Army to protect the borders of its mother nation and so does the determination of the men wearing that olive green uniform. Captain Vikram Batra was one of the brave soldiers who laid down his life while serving the country. The name of the Sher Shah or the Indian Army legend, Late Captain Vikram Batra can’t be forgotten.  Every Indian know his name and about the life of this martyr. The unbelievable courage and the battlefield transcended heroism defines the solid character of Captain Vikram Batra.

It was July 26, 1999, when the Indian Armed Forces won a valiant and decisive war against Pakistan. Many brave young soldiers laid down their lives in the ferocious battle, defending their nation on the inhospitable battlefield of Kargil. With his exact spirit and attitude, Captain Vikram Batra kept motivating the men of his own battalion to keep fighting during the Kargil War.

Also Read: Rani Lakshmi Bai: The Dauntless Lady of Jhansi

It’s been almost nineteen years since then, but the unparalleled courage and sacrifice of Kargil heroes are still afresh in the memory of every India. Many young Indian brave hearts of the army fought ferociously and died fearlessly.

To honour the sacrifice of gallant soldier, a hall at Service Selection Centre Allahabad is named ‘Vikram Batra Block’. Wikimedia Commons
To honour the sacrifice of the gallant soldier, a hall at Service Selection Centre Allahabad is named ‘Vikram Batra Block’. Wikimedia Commons

Early life of Captain Vikram Batra

Captain Vikram Batra was born on September 9, 1974, in Himachal Pradesh. He spent his childhood in the beautiful mountain town of Palampur. His father, Girdhari Lal Batra was a government school teacher and principal. Interestingly, he was born as one of the twins. He was elder of twin sons as he was born 14 minutes before his brother Vishal.

Captain Vikram Batra was a brilliant student who was better known as an all-rounder at school. He was immensely popular among his classmates and teachers as he was also a keen sportsman and avid participant in co-curricular activities. He held a green belt holder in karate and played table tennis at the national level.

From the very beginning, he wanted to serve his country and hence he joined NCC (National Cadet Corps). Due to his diligence and determination, he was adjudged as the best NCC cadet of north India. After completing his Bachelor’s degree in 1995, he decided to prepare for Combined Defense Services (CDS) examination. It was no surprise to his family as Captain Vikram Batra was always keen on joining the Army.

Also Read: Maharana Pratap: The Warrior With Never Say Die Attitude

Captain Vikram Batra found his love in 1995 at Punjab University in Chandigarh. ‘Dimple Cheema’ was the Captain Vikram Batra’s girlfriend during his college days. They stayed together for almost four years. Both of them had planned to get married if Vikram Batra would have returned from Kargil, but as it turned out, he never did.

Former Presiden, honorable  K. R. Narayanan presenting the Param Vir Chakra posthumous to the father of Captain Vikram Batra 13 Jammu and Kashmir Rifles. Wikimedia Commons
India’s former President, honourable K. R. Narayanan presenting the Param Vir Chakra posthumous to the father of Captain Vikram Batra 13 Jammu and Kashmir Rifles. Wikimedia Commons

 

 

Life facts of the Indian Army’s daredevil will fill your heart will patriotism and valour. Have a look at some of them:

  1. Captain Vikram Batra got his primary education from his mother, who herself was a teacher.
  2. As per the statement of the then Chief of the Army staff, captain Vikram Batra would have been the General of the Indian Army staff, had he returned from the Kargil war fought between India and Pakistan in the year 1999.
  3. Captain Vikram Batra was a soldier of the Indian Army and died in the Kargil war while rescuing an injured officer in an enemy counterattack.
  4. Captain Vikram Batra laid down his life when he was only 24 years-old. He died on July 7, 1999.
  5. Under the leadership of Captain Vikram Batra on June 19, 1999, the Indian army snatched point 5140, from right under the enemy’s nose.
  6. After successfully clinching the Point 5140, Captain Vikram Batra volunteered for the next mission to recapture point 4875. The terrain was very strenuous, as the location was 17,000 feet above the sea level and 80 degrees steep.
  7. In the early hours of July 7, 1999, Captain Vikram Batra was commanding a mission to rescue an injured officer during an enemy counterattack.
  8. According to the statements of his battalion, during the rescue attempt, Captain Vikram Batra pushed aside the injured officer saying, “You have children, step aside.”
  9. Unfortunately, Captain Vikram Batra was hit by a bullet on his chest and was killed in action while clearing enemy positions
  10. As a tribute to the soldiers of the Kargil war, the movie LOC was made in 2003. R Captain Vikram Batra’s role was played by Abhishek Bachchan.
  11. Captain Vikram Batra posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra (The highest gallantry medal awarded for displaying distinguished acts of valour during wartime).
  12. Captain Vikram Batra is well well known for coining the slogan “Yeh Dil Maange More!” He used it to signal the success of his mission.

To honour the sacrifice of gallant soldier, many constructions and cantonments have been named after him such as a hall at Service Selection Centre Allahabad is named ‘Vikram Batra Block’, a residential area in the Jabalpur Cantonment is called ‘Captain Vikram Batra Enclave’ and the combined cadet’s mess at the Indian Medical Association is named ‘Vikram Batra Mess’.