The abbreviated forms have been edited for the easy understanding of the readers. There are no other changes made.
Taken from the Facebook Page of IMA where the admin has posted about it in first person conversation with the instructor.
Captain Pawan’s instructor from the Indian Military Academy remembers one of his special students who joined his Battalion and then volunteered to join the Special Forces.
It’s an actual account that has come straight from his heart…. I stand witness…..Jai Hind
“How’s Genteman Cadet (GC) pawan?”, I asked one of the third term GCs, who were to pass out of IMA soon. My batallion had a vacancy and I was inquisitive about Pawan,who had opted for Dogras.
“He’s good in camps, sir”, came the reply.
I had heard about GCs being good in sports, academics,PT,riding etc, but, this was the first time that I had heard of someone being good in camps. I understood that the GC wanted to convey that Pawan had inexhaustible endurance and was a gritty team man.
On the day of the passing out, I assured his father, a simple man with strong principles, that Pawan was now part of the family of the Seventh and would be looked after like one. His reply was the same, which he gave today, “He’s our only child and we have given him to the army.”
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Being away from the batallion, I learnt that within a few days Pawan had proved his mettle and earned the respect of his men and admiration of his seniors.
Some months later, Pawan informed me that he wanted to convert to Para (Special Forces). For the Josh Box that he was, the Commanding Officer wasn’t too keen to let go off Pawan. But, he persisted and was soon donning the Balidan badge.
Earlier on 15 Jan this yr, I was looking forward to meet him during the Golden jubilee celebrations. The first sight of Pawan took me by surprise. He had a full grown beard, long hair parted in the middle and resembled a typical Kashmiri.
It was a matter of pride to see the GC transform into a seasoned soldier and a hardened paratrooper. I did feel a bit sorry for my Paltan which had to part with such a zealous officer.
Later, while driving back, he narrated about his operational exploits and the close encounters that he had. His Team members in 10 SF frequently remarked how Pawan had a knack for attracting combat situations.
I was filled with awe by the combat experience of the youngster with barely two years of service and even felt trivialized by his dexterity & achievements.
Pawan mentioned that he would not have opted for SF had I been posted in the Paltan.
A couple of days later, I learnt that he had injured his jaw during an operation and was admitted in 92BH, Srinagar. He informed that the doctors had recommended him for sick leave and would be proceeding to his hometown. But, when I spoke to him a few days later, he told that he was back with his Team in valley and didn’t proceed on sick leave.
Early morning today, I got the shattering news of Pawan attaining martyrdom in the Pampore operation.
The pathways of destiny do not reflect any better than in Pawan’s case. He was destined to lead a life less ordinary. He had cleared NDA SSB for Air Force, but since the vacancies were limited, joined as an army cadet. Subsequently, in fourth term, he again cleared PABT for AF, but there was not even a single vacancy and he continued as an Army cadet. At the IMA, he initially opted for Ordinance, but was guided by his DS from 5 Dogra and opted for the Regiment. There was no vacancy for the batallion and he eventually came to Seventh. Rest is history.
He was destined to live the life of a true officer and soldier and died like one, leading from the front. He was destined to be a hero and now calmly looks at us from the skies, earning his place with other martyrs. My salute to my trainee, who did so much at the age of 23, which we may never achieve in our lifetime.
Proud of you, buddy. ..
Your instructor and admirer.