In all, 82 Gallantry Awards have been awarded this year to armed forces personnel and members of paramilitary forces. They include one Ashok Chakra, 14 Shaurya Chakras, 63 Sena Medals (Gallantry), two Nao Sena Medals (Gallantry) and two Vayu Sena Medals (Gallantry).
Havildar Hangpan Dada, who died in Kupwara on May 27 after killing three terrorists, has been awarded Ashok Chakra, while Lt. Col. Niranjan Ek of the National Security Guard, who died during Pathankot operations, was awarded Shaurya Chakra on the eve of Independence Day by President Pranab Mukherjee.
Details of achievements
Hav. Dada, 36, hailed from Boduria village in Arunachal Pradesh and was posted in the high mountain north Kashmir since late last year. On May 26, 2016 as four heavily armed terrorists sneaked in across the Line of Control, Hav. Dada along with his team was tasked to chase and trap the fleeing terrorists. The ex-commando moved quickly in the inhospitable, snow-bound high altitude terrain and blocked the escape route of the terrorists, the Army said in a statement. In the ensuing action, Hav. Dada killed three terrorists singlehandedly despite being injured and his action led to elimination of the fourth terrorist.
Lt. Col. Niranjan Ek from the Corps of Engineers was with the NSG during the terrorist attack on the Pathankot airbase in January. An improvised explosive device (IED) attached to the body of one of the slain terrorists accidentally went off killing him and injuring four others.
About Gallantry Awards
Wartime gallantry awards
1. Param Vir Chakra — Highest military award for, equivalent to the Victoria Cross (which was replaced once India gained its independence).
2. Maha Vir Chakra – The Maha Vir Chakra (MVC) is the second highest military decoration in India and is awarded for acts of conspicuous gallantry in the presence of the enemy, whether on land, at sea or in the air.
3. Vir Chakra – Third in precedence in the awards for wartime gallantry
Peacetime gallantry awards
1. Ashok Chakra Award – An Indian military decoration awarded for valour, courageous action or self-sacrifice away from the battlefield. It is the peacetime equivalent of the Param Vir Chakra.
2. Kirti Chakra – Second in order of precedence of peacetime gallantry awards.
3. Shaurya Chakra – Third in order of precedence of peacetime gallantry awards.
Wartime/Peacetime service and gallantry awards
Sena Medal / Nao Sena Medal / Vayusena Medal