Bodies of five jawans killed in Galwan Valley clash reach Patna; Bihar CM Nitish Kumar announces Rs 36 lakh for next of kin
Bodies of five army jawans, who were killed fighting Chinese troops in Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh, arrived in Patna on Thursday by a special flight
Patna: Bodies of five army jawans, who were killed fighting Chinese troops in Ladakh, arrived here on Thursday by a special flight.
Twenty Indian army personnel were killed in a fierce clash with Chinese soldiers in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh on Monday night and of them five were from Bihar, four from Punjab, two each from Odisha, Jharkhand and West Bengal, and one each from Chhattisgarh, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Telangana.
Bihar chief minister Nitish Kumar, Deputy CM Sushil Kumar Modi and other members of the state cabinet, besides representatives of various political parties and top officials, were at the airport to pay their tributes to the fallen soldiers.
Of the five soldiers from Bihar, the body of Havildar Sunil Kumar had arrived on Wednesday. On Thursday, bodies of the other four along with that of a jawan from Jharkhand were brought to Patna.
Those whose bodies were brought on Thursday included Kundan Kumar Ojha whose mortal remains were taken to his native district Sahibganj in Jharkhand.
The bodies of Chandan Kumar (Bhojpur), Kundan Kumar (Saharsa), Aman Kumar (Samastipur) and Jai Kishor Singh (Vaishali) were also brought on the special flight.
The bodies of the soldiers were taken to their native places in vehicles decked with flowers.
Expressing grief over the loss of lives of five sons of the soil, the chief minister announced a sum of Rs 36 lakh for the next of kin of each of the deceased besides a government job to one member of each of the bereaved families.
Out of the total sum payable to each deceased soldier's family, Rs 11 lakh will be given as ex-gratia in accordance with the state government's policy for "martyred" army personnel while Rs 25 lakh will be drawn from the Chief Ministers Relief Fund, said a statement issued by the CM's office.
Havildar Sunil Kumar's mortal remains were consigned to the flames at his village in the afternoon with his 10-year-old son Ayush lighting the pyre amid chants of Sunil Kumar amar rahe' (long live Sunil Kumar) by hundreds of local residents who had reached the cremation ground carrying a gigantic tricolour.
The state has been on the boil ever since news of the death of five sons of the soil reached here. The ABVP and the Bajrang Dal have been taking out processions in different parts of Bihar calling for boycott of all goods manufactured in China, accusing the neighbouring country of betraying India's trust by its act of aggression on the borders.
State Congress president and MLC Madan Mohan Jha, who was at the airport, came out with a statement deploring "the brutality displayed by Chinese troops in attacking our soldiers with rifle bayonets and barbed wire sticks".
"The Defence Minister owes an answer to the nation as to why our valiant soldiers were not armed adequately while being sent to face the enemy and why no back-up force was sent. Those ruling New Delhi trumpet their strong leadership but the ghastly attack comes as a woeful failure on their part to gauge China's true intentions", Jha said.
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