Lance Naik Chandrakant Galande, 27
Jashi village, Satara
“When I heard of young Armymen dying in terror attacks, I often felt I should ask my three sons to come back. But then, I won’t be able to tell people that I belong to this land. Am I wrong in saying that I want my two other sons to be safe? Will the government ensure that our sons are not killed like this?” says Shankar Galande, father of Lance Naik Chandrakant Galande (27), tears in his eyes. His two other sons and Chandrakant’s elder brothers, Keshav and Manjabapu, are posted in the northern sector.
Shankar is seated at their home in Galande Vasti hamlet near Jashi village, 70 km from Satara town. Not far from the house, his son’s last rites will be performed with full military honours on Tuesday.
Chandrakant’s four-year-old son plays in the open yard in front of the house, filled with villagers who have come to console the family. His younger son Jay sleeps in his mother Nisha’s lap. Nisha, 23, has not been in a condition to speak since she heard the news.
Chandrakant’s mother Sulabai adds in a steely voice: “I want the government to teach a lesson to the enemy. I have lost one son, but my two other sons are still there. They will keep fighting for the country. My grandchildren too will join the Army.”
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“Chandrakant had promised to visit us for Jay’s first birthday three months later,” says Sulabai, adding, “I spoke to him last Thursday. He asked about everyone in the family and about the crops and bullocks. He always missed these.”
Chandrakant, who had studied till Class X, joined the Army in 2010. He was posted in Uri for the past couple of years.