In a deadly attack on the Indian Army in Jammu and Kashmir, 17 soldiers lost their lives while 20 others were severely injured. Till late Sunday evening, there was no official word about the names of the martyrs. However, one family of Havildar Ravi Pal of 10 Dogra began grieving soon.
As per the family members, they had been told by his cousin Joginder Pal that he had received a call that Ravi was among the dead. Two of Ravi’s colleagues approached his wife Geeta Devi in Pathankot on Sunday and accompanied her with their two children to Ravi’s home in Saarba village, Jammu.
His family said that Ravi was expected to leave Uri on Monday or Tuesday for his transfer to Pathankot, a peace posting. Pathankot would have been his last posting before the retirement next year. Some members of Ravi’s regiment had already moved to Pathankot. He was among the few soldiers of 10 Dogra who were waiting to hand over the charge to the incoming 6 Bihar.
Defence officials said that apart from the 17 who died, 18 soldiers had been injured in the attack on the Administrative Buildings and Store Complex of the 12 Infantry Brigade Headquarters. “All the injured were brought to the 92-Base Hospital (in Srinagar),” Colonel Arun, General Staff, Information Wing, Northern Command, told The Indian Express.
Soon after reports flew in about Ravi’s death, villagers gathered at his house tp console his wife Geeta and mother Mulavi Devi. Excited about moving to Pathankot, Geeta and her two children had moved to Pathankot 20 days ago. In fact, she even got the children admitted to a nearby school there.
Ravi was the youngest among five children of Mulavi and late Babu Ram. Two of his elder brothers are also in Army.