MYSORE: Three war veterans from the city, who had won gallantry awards for displaying exceptional bravery in times of adversity and external aggression, were felicitated by the district administration on Saturday.
Air Vice-Marshal Subbaramu Sindhaghatta (retd), Col M.M. Ravi (retd) and Lt. Col A.T. Ganapathy (retd), are recipients of the Vir Chakra for their bravery during the 1965 and 1971 Indo-Pakistan wars.
This is the first time ever that the authorities have displayed such honour towards ex-servicemen on national occasions. It is expected to be a regular feature in future. What is more, the concept has caught the imagination of other district centres and if the response is any indication the concept of felicitating Defence personnel, it may soon be emulated in all centres.
The idea was mooted by M.N. Subramanian, president of Vekare Ex-servicemen Trust, which spearheads the cause of ex-servicemen, particularly those below the rank of officers. Once the district administration was approached, it urged the trust to identify three personnel from Mysore. This initiative helped bring to light the unknown heroes who were living in anonymity.
Air Vice-Marshal Subbaramu was born on April 25, 1957 and studied at the Maharaja’s High School and First Grade College before joining the Defence services through the Joint Services Wing, which latter became the National Defence Academy. With over 7,000 hours of flying experience, he flew fighter planes, transport and bomber aircrafts as also helicopters. He commanded a MiG-21 fighter squadron called the Black Archers. During the operation against Pakistan in December 1971, Subbaramu flew 32 missions of combat air patrol, escort and interception and was awarded the Vir Chakra for displaying courage under extreme danger.
Similarly, Col. Ravi was awarded the Vir Chakra for displaying exceptional daredevilry and bravery while commanding a company of the Bihar Regiment in the Eastern Sector. Born on May 2, 1945, in Virajpet, Kodagu district, he studied at St. Philomina’s College, Mysore, and was commissioned into the Army on April 23, 1967. In the 1971 war, he led an assault company into the enemy camp despite heavy artillery fire and accomplished the task.
Lt. Col Ganapathy was also born at Yavakapadi in Kodagu and after his schooling enrolled into the Army in 1954. While commanding a battalion of the Sikh Light Infantry, he was ordered to clear a point on the Kalidhar feature in Jammu and Kashmir despite continuous fire from the enemy side. He repulsed them displaying exceptional courage and bravery. Ganapathy is currently a resident of Mysore. All the three ex-servicemen received a certificate of honour and a shawl from the district administration apart from a memento.
Courtesy: The Hindu