In a first, Jammu and Kashmir Police bagged the three highest peacetime gallantry awards – namely Ashok Chakra, Kirti Chakra and Shaurya Chakra. J&K Police also received the most gallantry medals (257) on the eve of the 75th Independence Day.
Assistant Sub Inspector Babu Ram, Constable Altaf Hussain Bhat and Special Police Officer Shahbaz Ahmad have been posthumously conferred with the Ashok, Kirti and Shaurya awards, respectively. The three highest gallantry awards are given for displaying exemplary courage in the service of the nation. The Ashok Chakra is the highest peacetime gallantry award in the country, Kirti Chakra is second in the order, and Sharya Chakra is the third highest.
Babu Ram's Supreme Sacrifice
ASI Babu Ram was awarded the Ashok Chakra for sacrificing his life during an assault against holed-up terrorists in Panthachowk last year, reported The Indian Express. Babu Ram was born on May 15, 1972, in Dharana village in the border town of Mendhar, in the Pooch district of Jammu. As a child, he wanted to join the armed forces. After finishing school, Ram was inducted into J&K Police as a constable in 1999.
Babu Ram was part of several anti-terror operations after being posted in the Special Operation Group (SOG) on July 27, 2002. In many of the operations, several hardcore militants were killed. He had also been part of 14 encounters in which 28 terrorists were killed while serving in the anti-insurgency group, as said by the officials.
Constable Bhat lived in the Rathpora area of Safakadal in Srinagar. He was performing PSO duty with a protected person while posted in Ganderbal. On October 6, militants attacked the protected person, and Bhat retaliated, killed the terrorist and managed to save the life of the protectee. However, the officials said he was severely wounded during the crossfire and succumbed to the bullet injuries and attained martyrdom.
Dilbag Singh Salutes The Sacrifice Of The Force
J&K Police DGP Dilbag Singh praised the UT's police force after it bagged the highest gallantry medals. J&K Police took to Twitter to "salute fallen heroes ASI Babu Ram, Const Altaf and SPO Shahbaz of JKP" for bringing honour and glory to the force by their sacrifice and service to the nation. The J&K Lt Governor Manoj Sinha also commended the J&K Police for leading the fight against militancy and said he was proud of their bravery and sacrifice.
The highest police medal, the President's Police Medal, was presented to Police sub-inspector Amardeep as a reward for his bravery. At the same time, CRPF head constable Kale Sunil Dattatraya, who died fighting terrorists in Pulwama last year, received it posthumously.
A total of 628 Police Medal for Gallantry was announced on Saturday. On Saturday, the Police Medal for Gallantry was conferred to 628 officers. Three hundred ninety-eight personnel were awarded gallantry in the J&K region, 155 in Maoist-affected areas, and 27 in the Northeast. Besides this, 88 personnel received the President's Police Medal for Distinguished Service (PPM), and 662 personnel were awarded the Police Medal for Meritorious Service.