Amidst emotional scenes, mortal remains of IAF officer Flight Lieutenant Advitiya Bal were on Saturday consigned to flames in his native village Jindermelu near the India–Pakistan border in Ranbirsinghpura of Jammu district.
Advitiya and Wing Commander Mohit Rana had died in the MIG 21 in Rajasthan’s Barmer on Thursday.
Earlier in the morning, a solemn wreath laying ceremony was organised at the Air Force Station, Jammu where mortal remains of Flt. Lt. Advitiya arrived in a service aircraft. Advitiya’s father and brother had gone to Rajasthan to bring his body to Jammu.
Air Commodore GS Bhullar, AOC Jammu, Divisional Commissioner Jammu, Ramesh Kumar and other senior military and civil officers paid tributes to braveheart. The mortal remains were then taken by road to his native place at RS Pura for the last rites with full military honours.
Hundreds of people with tears in their eyes lined up on both sides of the road and raised slogans for the killed officer.
Emotionally charged relatives said the young boy had joined IAF to fight the enemy and not get killed while flying an outdated fighter aircraft. They urged the government to phase out MIG 21 fleet that has become a flying coffin and has claimed life of several young fighter pilots.
Youngsters in the village said Advitiya, who was a passout of the Sainik School Nagrota, was their role model.