Beyond the movie, the essential import of the phenomenon of ‘Sam Bahadur’ is so much more than just that of the hero of the 1971 Indo-Pak War, the dashing leader, colourful personality or even of the symbolism of India’s first Field Marshal.
Three Army soldiers and a BSF jawan were martyred and also three terrorists gunned down by security forces on Sunday in an encounter along the Line of Control (LoC) in the Machil sector of Kupwara district in north Kashmir. Among the martyred soldiers was an officer of the Army.
The alert troops foiled the infiltration attempt by a big group of terrorists that was backed by the Pakistani army.
Two Army soldiers were seriously injured and have been evacuated to the military hospital for treatment.
BSF identified its martyred trooper as Constable Sudip Sarkar who was deployed in the Kashmir frontier.
The encounter began in the wee hours at 1 am when a BSF patrol noticed suspicious movement near the Anti-Infiltration Obstacle System (border fence) about 3.5 km from the LoC, said Army spokesman Colonel Rajesh Kalia.
A BSF soldier was martyred and a terrorist gunned down during the initial encounter. The firefight stopped at 4 am when more Army troops were rushed by the valley-based Chinar Corps to the area and movement of terrorists tracked with surveillance devices.
Colonel Kalia said that contact with terrorists was re-established at 10.20 am when the heavy fire was drawn by the search parties of the Army about 1.5 km from the LoC. In the ensuing firefight, 2 more terrorists were killed, but 3 Army soldiers also laid their life in the line of duty.
The operation in the area was still in progress after which further details would be made available, said Colonel Kalia.
Reports said that AK assault rifles and bags containing incriminating material have been recovered from the encounter spot.