Kolhapur village mourns soldier killed in LoC ceasefire violation: ‘It’s a sad Diwali for all of us’

By: Express News Service | Pune |

Updated: November 14, 2020 8:24:57 pm

Smoke emanating from exploded shells in the forest area of Gurez town in North Kashmir’s Bandipora district. (Express photo)

BAHIREWADI village in Kolhapur district is mourning at the time of Diwali as 20-year-old Rushikesh Ramchandra Jondhale, a resident of the village, was one of the four Army personnel killed in the ceasefire violation by Pakistan along the Line of Control in North Kashmir on Friday.

Jondhale, who belongs to a farmer family, had joined the Army in 2018. He is survived by his father Ramchandra, mother Kavita and sister Kalyani. The family lives in Bahirewadi village in Ajra taluka of Kolhapur district.

Jondhale was among the four Army personnel killed in unprovoked ceasefire violation by the Pakistan Army in Uri and Gurez sectors at multiple locations. One casualty was also reported among Border Security Force personnel and four among local civilians from these areas, including a child.

Bahirewadi village sarpanch Sunil Chavan, who is an ex-serviceman from the Maratha Light Infantry, said, “The entire village is mourning the death of Rushikesh… most of us have seen him grow up… He was very good at sports since the beginning and had a very helpful nature. We were very proud after he had joined the Army in the 6 Maratha Light Infantry. The entire village is proud of the supreme sacrifice made by our young son. But we are also deeply saddened and trying our best to console the family, which has lost its loved one. It’s a personal loss for everyone in the village. It’s a sad Diwali for all of us.”

Jondhale had come home on leave before the Covid-19 lockdown was enforced. Because of the lockdown, he had stayed home longer and had resumed duty in mid-June.

Chavan said Jondhale’s father told him that the family last spoke to the soldier over the phone on Wednesday.

Local administration and police officials said arrangements were being made for Jondhale’s last rites, which will be conducted on the premises of a school in the village after his mortal remains are flown to Maharashtra from Jammu and Kashmir.

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