Army pays tributes to those killed in Kashmir gunfight

Srinagar: The Indian Army on Monday paid tributes to the two soldiers killed in a gunfight in south Kashmir's Kulgam district on Sunday.

A Defence Ministry statement issued here said: "It called for raw courage to approach a house where the terrorists were confirmed to be hiding  even more so when the response had to be very guarded given the fact that they held a hostage in that house."

"Lance Naik Bhandoriya Gopal Singh and Sepoy Raghubeer Singh epitomised just that form of selfless courage as they were the leading buddy pair of the team that launched an operation in Frisal village yesterday (Sunday) during which four terrorists were eliminated," the statement said.

In a solemn ceremony, the Army paid homage to the gallant soldiers at Badami Bagh Cantonment here.

Major General K.K. Pant, Chief of Staff, Chinar Corps, laid wreaths on behalf of the Corps Commander and all ranks of the Corps.

Tributes were also paid by officials from civil administration and other security agencies that included the Divisional Commissioner of Kashmir, Inspector General Police and Joint Director IB.

According to the army statement, Lance Naik B. Gopal, 33, hailed frome Gokulchand Chali Chamanpura village in Ahmedabad district, Gujarat, and served in the army for 14 years. He is survived by his wife B. Hemavati.

Sepoy Raghubeer Singh was only 31 years old and had served for 13 years, the army said.

He belonged to Makholi village in Chamoli district of Uttarakhand, and is survived by his wife Rekha and a six-year-old son.

"The army salutes the sacrifice of the martyrs and stands in solidarity with the bereaved families and it will forever remain the army's responsibility to ensure they lead a life of dignity and pride," the army statement said.

The mortal remains of the soldiers are being taken to their native places for the last rites.(IANS)