BHOPAL: The Khudawal village of Madhya Pradesh's Jabalpur district has lost its third brave-heart son in terror or Naxal attack over the last one decade. Situated 50 km from Jabalpur district headquarter and more than 330 kms from state capital Bhopal, the Khudawal village is inseparably associated with serving the cause of national security.
More than 50 men from the village have so far served the country's defence and para-military forces, including the BSF and CRPF. "Serving the cause of national security is our prideful possession which has been passed from one generation to another by families in our village. More than 50 men have so far served the country's defence forces as well as paramilitary forces. My neighbour Ashwini is the third brave-heart who has sacrificed life for the nation's security. Three years back in 2016, another brave-heart son Rameshwar Lodhi lost life battling the terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir. Prior to that around a decade back another brave son from our village Rajendra Upadhyaya lost life in a blast during a Naxal attack in Balaghat district in the state," said Ravikant Yadav, the neighbour of the Kachhi family, which lost their youngest child in the Avantipura terror attack.
Young Ashwini, who was selected in the CRPF in 2014-15 and posted with the 35th CRPF Battalion after training in the trouble-torn J&K in 2017, was the youngest among four brothers and one sister. He was the lone member from the family in government service."Two years ago, when posted with the CRPF after training, the first thing he did was to ensure that his mother Kaushalya had to no longer roll beedis to contribute to the family's income, which was also generated by his brothers by working as labourers," recounted Yadav.
Ashwini's tearful school time friend Dilip Patel while recounting his old school days with his best buddy said, "Had the terror attack not happened, Ashwini could soon have been married as his family was looking for a suitable girl for the wedlock, but all is over now." The brave-heart's septuagenarian father Sukaru Kachhi, trying hard to put up a brave face, despite losing his youngest and most loved child, harboured only one demand like parents of the other brave-hearts killed in the Thursday afternoon attack. "Khoon ke badle khoon aur kuch nahi, agar unhone aapke char mare toh aap unke dus maaro, tabhi koi baat hai, nahi toh kuch nahi (We want blood for blood as revenge. If they've killed their four soldiers, kill their 10, which will the befitting reply)," said the bespectacled old man. "Hum hi ne unhe paala hai aur doodh pilaya hai, tabhi toh ye ghatnaye ho rahi hain (It's we only who have tolerated such elements for long, resulting in such incidents)," said the brave-heart's father.
Demanding a much more vigorous reply than what was given to the 2016 Uri terror attack, Ashwini's father said, "We have faith in PM Narendra Modi as he has done that in the past, but we want much more than what was the response to the Uri terror attack."
Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath will visit the brave-heart's village and meet the bereaved family after chairing the state cabinet meeting in Jabalpur on Saturday evening. Earlier, the state government announced Rs one crore compensation to the martyr's family, besides announcing a house and government job for one member of the bereaved family.