Major Anuj Rajput cremated with military honours in Panchkula

Tribune News Service

Panchkula, September 22

Major Anuj Rajput (27) of the Army Aviation Corps, who was one of the two pilots killed when an Army chopper crashlanded in Udhampur district of Jammu and Kashmir yesterday, was cremated today at the Sector 20 crematorium with full military honours, including a gun salute.

Editorial: Chopper casualties: Safety audit of HAL a must to fix culpability, expedite phaseout


Major Anuj Rajput’s parents and kin break down as his body arrives at his house in Panchkula on Wednesday. RAVI KUMAR

His father KS Arya, an advocate, lit the funeral pyre of his only son in the presence of senior officers of the Army and the district administration, and a large number of local residents. Slogans of “Bharat Mata ki jai’ and “Major Anuj Rajput amar rahe” rent the air.

The Major’s father, KS Arya, and mother Usha Devi, a government schoolteacher, were inconsolable.

At their house, the mother broke down as she lay her head on the Major’s coffin.

Earlier today, Major Rajput’s body was brought to his house in Group Housing Society 104 in Sector 20, followed by a wreath-laying ceremony in Udhampur.

Mourners thronged the streets in the most densely populated sector of the city to catch a glimpse of the soldier draped in the Tricolour.

Family, relatives and neighbours fell silent as the military escort brought the coffin home before carrying it to the Sector 20 crematorium.

Haryana Speaker and local MLA Gian Chand Gupta expressed grief over the death of the Major and offered condolences to the family.

He said, “I am stunned that the Panchkula son who dedicated his life to the country left us at such a young age. I have no words to express the pain. My prayers are with the parents. We are proud of our braveheart.”

On September 18, the Major had celebrated his 27th birthday.

The family of Major Rajput, who had got engaged just about a month and a half ago, was planning his wedding when they received the tragic news. He had only recently been promoted to the rank of Major.

At the age of 18, he joined the National Defence Academy (NDA) and became a commissioned officer.

Major Rohit Kumar and Major Anuj Rajput were on a training sortie when their Cheetah helicopter crash-landed in Shiv Garh Dhar near Patnitop, resulting in grave injuries.

Both pilots succumbed to their injuries at the Command Hospital, Udhampur, where they were evacuated for treatment.

Slogans rent the air

His father KS Arya, an advocate, lit the funeral pyre of his only son in the presence of senior officers of the Army and the district administration. Slogans of “Bharat Mata ki jai’ and “Major Anuj Rajput amar rahe” rent the air.

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