New Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind bestows the Ashok Chakra, the highest peacetime military decoration, the the family of Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala, an Indian Air Force Garud commando who laid down his life while gunning down two terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir.
Corporal Nirala was part of a Garud Special Forces Unit, a detachment of which was attached to a Rashtriya Rifles Battalion under aegis of ‘Op Rakshak’ in Jammu-Kashmir.
On November 18, 2017, based on specific intelligence, an offensive was launched in Chanderger village of Bandipora district in J-K.
The Garud detachment covertly approached the target house where the suspected terrorists were hiding and laid a close quarter ambush.
“Corporal Nirala, displaying exceptional battle craft, positioned himself close to the approach of the hideout, thus cutting off all possibilities of an escape by the terrorists.
“Laying the ambush at such close quarters demanded a very high degree of courage and professional acumen,” a statement by the defence ministry said.
While the detachment laid in wait, six terrorists hiding in the house, rushed out, shooting and lobbing grenades at the Garuds.
“Corporal Nirala, disregarding personal safety and displaying indomitable courage, retaliated with effective lethal fire and gunned down two category A terrorists and injured two others,” the statement said.
In this violent exchange of fire, Nirala was hit by a volley of small arms fire. Despite being critically injured, the Corporal continued retaliatory fire.
Subsequently, he succumbed to fatal gunshot wounds received in the fierce encounter, which resulted in the killing of all six dreaded terrorists, the statement said.
Crpl Nirala exhibited most conspicuous gallantry in fighting with terrorists and made supreme sacrifice,” it said.