After reading the heading you all must be thinking that it’s an obvious fact that after every Monday, Tuesday comes, then what so special about it?
It was special on that decisive night of June 15th 2020, when all of us were sleeping comfortably but 20 of our brave soldiers lost their lives guarding our country’s borders. What happened on that night is the most valorous incident in the warfare history that will swell every Indian heart with pride.
Before this incident took place there was a Colonel level meeting between India and China on the patrolling point 14 and the Indian side was represented by 16 Bihar Regiment Commanding Officer, Colonel Santosh Babu. After the meeting, Chinese Colonel agreed to remove its tent from the Patrolling Point 14. Although this post was on Chinese side but it was being used for monitoring Darbuk-Shyok-Daulat Beg Oldie (DSDBO) road. Now according to the treaty signed by both the countries, patrolling is allowed in this disputed area but construction of any permanent or temporary structure is not allowed. After the Colonel level meeting both the parties agreed to take a step back from the disputed area and to verify this Colonel Santosh Babu, in the evening under the leadership of a major rank officer sent a 12 person patrolling party. When the patrolling party arrived at the location they found that Chinese side had not removed the tent like observation point.
As per treaty the patrolling party was not carrying any weapons and due to which they were taken hostage by the Chinese side. When this news reached Col Santosh Babu, he along with 2 jawans reached the Chinese side. Col Santosh Babu was brave a man of polite and soft nature and he was confident that he will solve everything without any violence but he was unaware of the intentions of the Chinese. When Col Babu reached the Chinese post he found that they were new soldiers instead of the ones who were acquainted with all the protocols. These new PLA soldier started misbehaving with Col Santosh Babu which lead to heated arguments. As the Chinese soldiers were more in number they attacked Col Babu and his accomplices with sticks, barbed wires rod and others non-listed weapons. During this sudden attack by the PLA soldiers Colonel Santosh Babu and 2 other Indian Army soldiers lost their lives.
Since a commanding officer is like a father figure for any unit and therefore when the news of Col Santosh Babu’s demise reached the 16 Bihar Regiment,whole unit got enraged. Along with other units posted in the area like the Field Regiment and Bihar Regiment Ghatak Commandos they launched such an assault on the Chinese camp that PLA soldier had imagined in their worst dreams.
Now it was past mid-night and the time for Chinese soldier to know that they are fighting against an army which is known for its courage and valor. Monday was over, Tuesday has started, Tuesday according to Hindu mythology is a day of Lord Hanuman and the war cry of 16 Bihar Regiment is ’Jai Bajrang Bali’. While raising the war cries Jai Bajrang Bali and Birsa Munda Ki Jai 300 soldiers attacked the Chinese camp (imagining about this gave me Goosebumps). Chinese who were sitting on the top of the mountain threw stones on the Indian soldiers but these brave hearts of 16 Bihar Regiment were thirsty for Chinese blood and so after reaching the Chinese side, they set the Chinese camp on fire. This assault by the India side went for several hours and it looked like Lord Hanuman had arrived for Lanka Dahan. According to Defense sources, Bihar Regiment Ghatak commandos platoon broke the neck of atleast 15 PLA soldiers and broke the spines of many Chinese soldiers and some of the dead Chinese soldiers faces were found crushed with stones. During this assault the mountain on which this camp was situated broke due to combined weight of Chinese and Indian soldiers. The soldiers on both the sides fell into the ice-cold Galwan river. Due to falling into this river and hypothermia 20 of our soldiers got martyred, 18 got severely injured and 58 got light injuries. Due to the assault by 16 Bihar soldiers there were large numbers of casualties on the Chinese side. It is estimated that atleast 40 PLA soldier died, 100 to 150 PLA soldiers got injured and many of the bodies of the Chinese soldiers were recovered by slowing the flow of Galwan river.
This is my message to all who question the valor of our Indian Army that we should keep in mind that the Indian Army will never boost about its valor, courage and achievements. From 1947 till date, if we are sitting safely in our homes and are able to question the Indian Armed Forces it is only because of these brave hearts who would never hesitate to sacrifice their life for protecting this great Nation and we as Youths of this country need to respect the sacrifices of these brave hearts.
Sarthak Aryan Editorial Head - VYÃPTI Foundation