Handwara encounter: PM Modi pays tribute to martyrs, says their valour and sacrifice will never be forgotten

3 May, 2020 | Priyanka Sharma

Narendra Modi National

In Handwara encounter on early Sunday morning, India lost its four army personnel including one colonel, one major, two jawans as well as one police personnel. PM Modi has paid his tribute to the m...

Handwara encounter: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday paid his tribute to the martyred soldiers and security personnel who lost their lives in the Handwara encounter. PM Modi tweeted that the valour and sacrifice of these brave-hearts will never be forgotten. They displayed utmost dedication towards the country and worked tirelessly to save the civilians. He also extended his condolences to their family and friends.

Earlier on Sunday, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had shared his condolences on Twitter. Expressing the loss of soldiers and security personnel in Handwara as deeply disturbing and painful, Rajnath Singh said that they displayed exemplary courage while fighting the terrorists and made supreme sacrifices to serve the country, which will never be forgotten. His heart goes out to all their families who lost their loved one. He added that India stands shoulder to shoulder with those families.

Speaking about the Handwara operation, Chief of Defence Staff Bipin Rawat also applauded the bravery and courage of the martyred soldiers and security personnel. He said that the Handwara encounter displays the determination of security forces to ensure to safety of Indian citizens. Moreover, the armed forces are extremely proud of them as they have successfully eliminated all the terrorists.

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In a nearly 7 hour long gun battle at Jammu and Kashmir’s Handwara town, India lost its four army personnel including the commanding officer of 21 Rashtriya Rifles Unit along with 2 soldiers and one police personnel. The commanding officer has been identified as Colonel Ashutosh Sharma. Colonel Ashutosh Sharma had been awarded with the gallantry medals twice for his exemplary courage and bravery in counter-terrorism missions. Since last five years, he was serving the nation as a first commanding officer. Other officers who lost their lives in the mission have been identified as Major Anuj Sood, Naik Rajesh and Lance Naik Dinesh.

The encounter begun at around 3:30 pm upon receiving Intel that militants have taken civilians under hostage at a house in Handwara. Followed by which, the security personnel surrounded the area and waited for about an hour until militants fired their last bullet. They then successfully slipped into the house, managed to save the civilians and gunned down about two militants, one of whom has been identified as a top Lashkar commander.

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