Ahmedabad: The family of a soldier, who was killed during a gun battle with terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir five years ago, has refused to accept the ‘Shaurya Chakra’ gallantry award delivered to their home in Gujarat by post, saying it’s an “insult” to their son Lance Naik Gopal Singh Bhadoriya.
On September 5, Lance Naik Bhadoriya’s father Munim Singh returned a postal courier containing the ‘Shaurya Chakra’, which was awarded to his son posthumously a year after he died in the line of duty in February 2017.
Mr Singh, who lives in the Bapunagar area of Ahmedabad city, demanded that the country’s third-highest peacetime gallantry award be handed over to the family at a ceremony in the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi.
“The Army can not send the medal by post. This is not only a violation of the protocols but also an insult to a martyr and his family. That is why I have not accepted the parcel containing the medal and returned it saying ‘I can not accept it’,” a visibly upset Mr Singh told news agency PTI.
“Such medals are always conferred at a ceremony held in the Rashtrapati Bhavan on January 26 or August 15 and the entire nation sees the event on TV. If not the President, then the medal is given to the family by a senior Army officer. But, it should never be delivered through courier,” he said.
Lance Naik Bhadoriya was 33 when he died. In 2018, the soldier was posthumously awarded the Shaurya Chakra, the third-highest peacetime gallantry award after the Ashok Chakra and the Kirti Chakra.