On the evening of June 15, India and China engaged in a face-off in the Galwan Valley in Ladakh which is considered the most deadly clash in the past four decades since 1967 Indo-China clashes. Twenty Indian soldiers, including the Commanding Officer Colonel Santosh Babu of 16 Bihar (an infantry battalion), lost their lives in the incident. Prime Minister Narendra Modi convened an all-party meeting on June 19 where he said that though India is a peace-loving country, it can give a befitting reply if provoked. Efforts are on in both the countries to defuse the tense situation at the Line of Actual Control (LAC).
Indian soldiers using the most “primitive” counter-attack measure launched a counter-attack on their Chinese counterparts. The 16 Bihar troops were reportedly joined by the Ghatak platoon and together with Sikh troops of 3 Field Regiment (Artillery); they unleashed a reign of terror, unheard of in modern military history. Ghatak troops are trained experts in close-quarter combat battles and spearhead assaults. The soldiers were shouting war cries in roaring thunders voices as they avenged their Commanding Officer.
PLA had a tough time handling the bodies of their troops, many of whose limbs were broken or severed. The bodies were scattered all over the ridge and nearby gorge. The “primitive fighting methods” by the Indian troops using stones, sticks and bayonets against the enemy indicated that the soldiers were merciless in their attack the moment their commanding officer fell.
Below mentioned is an actual account of the incident happened that day at Galwan Valley between Indian Army troops and PLA. It was told by one officer who is posted at the actual location of the clashes and wanted the below account to be spread among the population of India. He wanted to let us know that we should be aware of this historic incident and the associated saga of courage and valour shown by Indian Army troops. Please note that certain information has been hidden such as exact ranks.
“The Gunners of 3 Field Regiment amongst others were called to assist 16 Bihar in the incident of the physical face-off. One “officer” along with the other brave hearts drove down to assist them as soon as possible. In the ensuing melee, the Sikhs and Biharis definitely killed several PLA soldiers and got their Commanding Officer alive. Two of our own succumbed to injuries while the “officer” and one small own group was overwhelmed as they chased down the running PLA soldiers but were overwhelmed due to multiplication in numbers of coming PLA troops. The PLA Commanding Officer held by the Indian Soldiers was the fulcrum of all negotiations which is yet to be (Note the message is dated 21 June 2016 or maybe earlier).
3 Field Regiment Sikh troops were part of that nasty battle. They fought like Tigers and in bargain lost two brave and valiant JCOs. The “Officer” was injured; two Majors got injured along with many JCOs and NCOs. The “Officer” along with JCO presumably POW or missing, must have come back yesterday after GOC level negotiation. We must spread the valour of Gunners in the groups known to us. Jai Hind.
“Chidiya naal mai baaj ladawa, giddran nu main sher banana
Sawa laakh se ek ladava, tab Govind Singh naam dharava”
This was a phrase we had often heard and admired but for those present at the site of the skirmish on that fateful night of 15th June, it is the synopsis of the manner in which the valiant Khaalsas of 3 Medium Regiment fought the Chinese despite being heavily outnumbered. The roars of “Bole so Nihal, Sat Sree Akal” reverberated in the icy cold night and filled the Indian troops with unparalleled vigour and Josh.
Each soldier was taking on at least 4-5 Chinese, and this required unmatched physical toughness typical of a Khalsa and the daring Biharis. The gallant acts and sheer bravery of the boys evoked inspiration and confidence amongst own troops while at the same time evoking fear and reverence amongst the Chinese.
In the ensuing close hand-to-hand combat reminiscent of medieval times, we lost 2 of our finest JCOs and few got injured, but not before knocking down 30-35 or maybe even many more of the enemy.”
“This will go down as one of the most daring fights that occurred at LAC front after 1967. I was waiting for the events to come out on their own through credible people and not what is prevalent in media. I’m at a loss of words and feeling the regret of not fighting alongside these men. Much thanks to you “Officer” for sharing this with me.” This was my response to him as I was getting Goosebumps while reading this at 0350 hours of Sunday morning.
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