New Delhi: Three Army doctors have been
honoured with the Sena Medal for gallantry for taking on
terrorists and saving the lives of their colleagues during an
attack on Indians in Kabul last year.
A total of 114 Army personnel have been awarded the Sena
Medal for gallantry on Independence Day for their acts of
valour in different operations across the country.
Lieutenant Colonel Sanjiv Kumar Kakkar of the Army
Medical Corps was heading the Indian medical mission in Kabul
when the terrorists carried out a suicide attack on the hotel
where the Indian team was staying.
"After the heavy suicide attack, Kakkar, though unarmed,
displayed exceptional bravery, rushed into a hail of bullets
to take on the terrorist and herded his colleagues to safety.
The terrorist lobbed a grenade setting the complex on fire and
blocked the exit," an Army release said.
"The officer ran through the advancing flames, took his
colleagues with him and jumped through the window, himself
sustaining severe burn injuries and a splinter injury in the
right leg," it said.
In the same attack, Major Sumit Arora, a medical
specialist, came under fire as a terrorist lobbed a grenade at
his room setting it on fire.
"Arora, totally unarmed, decided to brave the fire and
confront the enemy bare handedly. He came out of the room
jumping through the window running through the fire towards
the terrorists outside," the Army said.
"Arora sustained severe burns and shrapnel injuries all
over his body but not bothered for his life, he looked after
his colleagues and provided them with emergency life and limb
saving medical care till medical help arrived," the Army said.
Major Sibashish Metia was awarded the Sena Medal for
saving the lives of three of his colleagues in the hotel.
"He led the members through the blazing inferno and enemy
fire without caring for his own safety. Without considering
his surgical career he opened the doors by opening the hot
metallic knobs with bare hands, suffering severe burn injuries
to both hands, face, chest and inhalation lung injury but
saved the lives of three members," the release said.
For fighting militants bare-handedly in the same attack,
Major Laishram Jyotin Singh was posthumously conferred the
highest peacetime gallantry award `Ashok Chakra` on Republic
Day this year.
Major Atul Garje and Major Bhanu Chander have been
awarded the Sena Medal posthumously for manoeuvring their
helicopter away from civilian habitat and ensuring no loss of
civilian life on February 2 this year.
"As part of an exercise to rehearse Indian Army war
plans, soon after take-off from Army Aviation Base, Nasik, the
pilots experienced an aircraft emergency over a built-up area,
necessitating an immediate force landing," the Army said.
"They manoeuvred the helicopter away from civilian
habitat and ensured no loss to civilian life and property. In
the process of recovery, the helicopter impacted the ground
and crash landed which resulted in the loss of their lives,"