Major Rishi R of the 42 Rashtriya Rifles was shot on the face after he planted a Improvised Explosive Device (IED) but that did not stop him to shred the terrorist using his AK-47 rifle.
On March 4, duty called again as two terrorists – a local Kashmiri named Aquib and Lashkar-e- Toiba militant Farsan – were cornered by the army in a house in Tral.
The operation to apprehend them lead to a 16-hour pitched gunfight that ended with the death of the two terrorists.
Major Rishi was the first to reach the scene and it was his quick thinking and courage eventually won the day for the Indian army.
After the continuing gun battle, the troops attempted to blow up the remaining portion of the house to further isolate their targets. The Major again volunteered to enter the house and place the IED. He went inside in pitch black conditions in the middle of the night. ‘While returning, Rishi spotted a better location and decided to place the bombs there as it would do more damage to the house,’ the source said.
As soon as he placed the bomb, one of the terrorists opened fire at him from point-blank range and a bullet directly hit Rishi’s face, severing his nose and badly damaging his cheek bone and jaw.
Despite the grave injury, the officer realised that if he allowed the terrorist to move further, his team would be endangered. ‘That very moment, the Major sprang up and used his AK- 47 rifle against the terrorist in the quick moment before escaping outside safely with his team,’ the sources said.
Army sources who have served alongside Maj Rishi, say he is responsible for bringing in peace and stability to Kashmir while it was burning after Burhan’s Wani’s death.
‘His ability to speak and make friends with everybody resulted in him making many friends among locals notorious for spitting on patrols in the area… after Burhan’s elimination, the area under him was the quietest with no stones thrown,’ they said.
The officer is now recuperating in the Army Research and Referral hospital in Delhi. He can’t speak but is interacting with family and colleagues through notes as he awaits more surgeries on his face. The officer, his friends say, wants to return to the place where he last saw action even as locals from Tral ask about his health.
We Salute you sir for your courageous act and for serving the nation.