Three soldiers from Andhra among five killed in Ladakh

A special plane of the Indian Air Force arrived at the airport from Gwalior and the bodies of the soldiers were shifted to their native villages in three special vehicles.
Mortal remains of the soldiers,  belonging to 52 Armoured Regiment, arrived at the Gannavaram airport on Monday. Major Deepak Sharma paid tributes to the bravehearts on behalf of Governor S Abdul Nazeer
Mortal remains of the soldiers, belonging to 52 Armoured Regiment, arrived at the Gannavaram airport on Monday. Major Deepak Sharma paid tributes to the bravehearts on behalf of Governor S Abdul Nazeer Photo | Express

VIJAYAWADA: Mortal remains of three soldiers of the Indian Army, who died on Saturday while withdrawing from a military training activity that involved crossing the Shyok River at the Daulat Beg Oldi (DBO) area of eastern Ladakh, reached Vijayawada International Airport in Gannavaram on Monday afternoon.

A special plane of the Indian Air Force arrived at the airport from Gwalior. On behalf of Andhra Pradesh Governor S Abdul Nazeer, Major Deepak Sharma laid a wreath and paid tributes to the brave soldiers at the airport. Later, bodies of the soldiers were shifted to their native villages in three special vehicles.

Members of the 52 Armoured Regiment, the soldiers had participated in a routine exercise on Saturday (June 28). While crossing the River near Mandir Morh, 148 kilometres from Leh on their T-72 tank, the water levels suddenly began to rise and soon the tank and the soldiers were washed away due to the strong current. Three soldiers from Andhra Pradesh — Risaldar M Ramakrishna Reddy from Kalavapalli village in Prakasam district, Havildar Subhan Khan from Islampur in Bapatla district, and Craftsman Sadaraboina Nagaraju from Chevendra village in Krishna district — lost their lives. Two other soldiers also died in the incident.

As per reports reaching here, Sadaraboina Nagaraju (32) joined the Armed forces seven years ago. He is survived by his wife, Mangadevi, and a daughter. Nagaraju joined the Army, taking inspiration from his elder brother Sivayya, who is also in the Armed forces.

Born to a patriotic couple, Dhanalakshmi and Venkayya, the brothers are role models for the villagers. 

CM assures all support to bereaved families

In Bapatla district’s Islampur, an emotional farewell was given to Subhan Khan, the 40-year-old Havildar who joined the Indian Army 17 years ago. He was working in the Electronics and Mechanical Engineers (EME) Department. He was set to retire in the next two years. He is survived by his wife, two sons, and a daughter. His family members were devastated, as Khan was supposed to visit them on July 7. He had already booked his tickets.

Four days ago, he spoke to his family on a video call on the occasion of his daughter’s birthday, villagers said. The last rites were conducted with full military honours in the presence of relatives and locals.

The mortal remains of Ramakrishna Reddy reached his native Kalavapalli village in Prakasam district Monday night. Arrangements are underway to perform the last rites to the departed soldier with full military honours on Tuesday. He is survived by wife Uma Devi. He has two sons -- Ravikanth Reddy, a Merchant Navy Officer, and Kirankanth Reddy, a B.Tech student. The family had shifted to Hyderabad for the studies of their children.

A small hamlet with a population of 600 people, Kalvapalli is known as the ‘village of Army men’ as at least one person from each of the family serves in the Indian Army.

Ramakrishna Reddy shared a cordial relation with the villagers and had many friends. His father Ramaswamy Reddy was also an Army man. Reddy had visited his native two months ago to attend a marriage. He met all his relatives and friends, and told them that he would retire in five months. He had promised to come back to Kalavapalli and work towards the development of the village.

“Just a few hours before his demise, Ramakrishna Reddy called me and talked about developing the village and his plans to settle here. His demise is unfortunate not just for his family, but for the entire village,” M Gangi Reddy, the Risaldar’s cousin, told TNIE.

Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu, and HRD and IT Minister Nara Lokesh condoled the bereaved families and assured that the State government will support them in every possible way. Former chief minister and YSRC president YS Jagan Mohan Reddy requested the State government to announce financial aid of `1 crore each to the family of the deceased soldiers.

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