BENGALURU: Major Akshay’s family has a proud tradition of serving in the armed forces. His father retired as a Wing Commander in the Air Force, while his grandfather was a Colonel in the Army.
In the Girish residence, every corner speaks of patriotism and love for the country. A gallery of Akshay’s pictures with his family shows how deeply he was connected to them as a son, husband and father, as much as to the Indian Army and his responsibilities as a soldier.
After his death, Meghna and Akshay’s wife Sangeetha created a peaceful corner on the first floor of the house, which was once the martyr’s favourite spot. It is now filled with his things, including the Army uniform he last wore, his blazer, shoes, destroyed mobile phone (during the terror attack), poems he had written, a photo frame with his last WhatsApp message on their family group, which he had sent just a few minutes before he was shot to death.
Starting with his five-year-old daughter Naina, the family intends to keep that patriotism alive. “My granddaughter asked us, ‘Why can’t papa come back from God’s House? I really miss him. Do you miss your Raja Beta?’ “ says Meghna.
The family decided to continue Major Akshay’s legacy. Sangeetha, Meghna, her husband Girish, daughter Neha and son-in-law Pradish founded the Major Akshay Girish Memorial Trust, which aims to promote nationalism.
“We have chosen the path of motivating youth, particularly students in schools, colleges and universities, to strive for a career in the defence services and allied government services. The aim is to attract and promote young talent, which has the spirit to do good for our country,” Meghna said. They also teach an English Language programme at a government school in Doddaballapur, which was started on a pilot basis. Special days and men and women in civil service are introduced through stories, songs and drama.