Not ‘100 laptop happy’ with Mahavir Chakra awarded to Col Santosh Babu, says his father

Hyderabad, January 26

The father of late Colonel Santosh Babu on Monday said he was “not 100 per cent satisfied” with the Mahavir Chakra posthumously awarded to him for his acts of gallantry against the Chinese attack in Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh in June 2020, and that he should have been honoured with the Param Vir Chakra.

“It is not that I am unhappy. But I am not 100 per cent satisfied (with the award of Mahavir Chakra). There is scope for honouring him in a better way.

But my opinion is that Santosh Babu should have been named for the highest military award Param Vir Chakra for the gallantry he displayed while discharging his duties,” Babu’s father B Upendra told PTI.

He said the valor shown by his son had inspired many people, including those working in the defence forces.

Colonel Babu, the commanding officer of the 16 Bihar regiment, was among 20 Indian soldiers who laid down their lives in the fierce hand-to-hand combat on June 15 last year in the Galwan Valley, an incident that marked one of the most serious military conflicts between the two sides in decades.

Upendra said his son, overcoming the challenges posed by the climatic conditions of the area where he was posted, fought with Chinese troops.

“My son and his men fought barehanded. He proved that India is superior and stronger than China by killing more enemy soldiers,” he said.

According to him, Col Babu’s family did not get anything more than the departmental benefits that are usually given to the families of martyred soldiers, from the Centre.

The Telangana Government gave Rs 5 crore ex-gratia to Santosh Babu’s family, besides Group-I post to his wife and a residential plot. PTI

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