Ranbir Singh Bisht was a distinguished artist and recipient of the Padma Shri award. His artistic creations skillfully intertwined nature with the human form.
Today, people across the internet are fondly remembering and paying tribute to Capt Vikram Batra, an Indian army officer who tragically lost his life 24 years ago on this very day.
On July 7, 1999, during the intense operations to capture Point 4875, also known as “Point 5140,” Batra and his team faced heavy enemy fire. Undeterred by the grave danger, he fearlessly led his troops from the front and successfully seized the strategically important peak.
When someone sacrifices his life for the country, he, in turn, influences the world. Dil Maango More was a Pepsi ad catchline by Anuja Chauhan coined in 1998.
A year later, when journalist Barkha Dutt went to interview Capt Vikram Batra (then Lieutenant Batra) in the bunkers somewhere in Kargil, after capturing Tiger Hill, he used the Pepsi catchline “Dil Maange More” literally meaning My Heart Wants More. He was referring to taking on as many Pakistani ‘mujahideens’ or soldiers as possible.
A few days later in the midst of the following operations, Batra came to know that one of his comrades, Rifleman Sanjay Kumar, had suffered severe injuries and was left stranded on a vulnerable ridge. Without a moment’s hesitation, Batra made the decision to go back and rescue him. Despite the perilous circumstances and enemy fire, he bravely reached Rifleman Sanjay Kumar and managed to bring him to safety.
Tragically, while descending the ridge, Captain Vikram Batra was struck by enemy fire and sustained fatal injuries. He made the ultimate sacrifice, displaying immense bravery and selflessness in the face of danger.
Capt Batra’s only memory for the Indians on TV was the snap interview with Barkha Dutt, and the lines Dil Maange More reverberated across the country. It was no more associated with Pepsi. These had become Capt Vikram Batra’s catchlines.
And then a movie called Dil Maange More (not connected to Batra) was made. The expression now had a currency like any other idiom. Every July 7, when it is Capt Batra’s birthday, people remember him and remember the Dil Maange More attitude.
For his exceptional bravery, Vikram Batra was bestowed with the Param Vir Chakra, the highest military honor in India, posthumously on August 15, 1999. It was a significant date as it marked the 52nd anniversary of India’s independence. His father, G.L. Batra, received this honor on behalf of his courageous son from the late President of India, K.R. Narayanan.
Vikram Batra’s inspiring story was brought to life in the 2021 film “Shershaah,” where actor Sidharth Malhotra portrayed his character in a biopic directed by Vishnuvardhan and produced by Dharma Productions and Kaash Entertainment.
Beyond his military achievements, Vikram Batra is also remembered in India for his iconic slogan, “Yeh Dil Maange More!” which served as his signal to indicate mission success.
On the eve of Kargil Vijay Diwas on July 26, 2022, a remarkable tribute to Batra was unveiled. The Pangode Military Station swimming pool in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, became the site of a remarkable achievement as URF World Records (Universal Records Forum) certified the creation of the largest underwater portrait of Batra.
Vikram Batra’s legacy lives on through the numerous awards and accolades he received both before and after his untimely death.