R Varadarajan and his wife Geetha wait for their son Major Mukund Varadarajan to arrive in a coffin at their modest flat in Tambaram in Chennai. “I love my son, I am proud of him… I miss him,” said Varadarajan on Sunday evening.
His son Mukund of the 44 Rashtriya Rifles was killed in an encounter with militants in J&K on Friday. The family is preparing for the funeral on Monday. The body was expected to arrive before midnight.
He had come home in January, on a 20-day leave during Pongal. On April 12, his birthday, he had told his father he was planning another leave for his three-year-old daughter Arsheya’s surgery and had asked his parents to keep it a surprise for his wife Indhu Rebecca Varghese.
Indhu is still waiting to meet him again. “There lived a man who loved me with all his heart…But now I wait…for he is with God. One day I will meet him. And he will give me that warm strong hug of his,” she wrote on Facebook.
Mukund married Indhu in 2009, a friend from Madras Christian College, where he did diploma in journalism after passing BCom while she did her Masters. His father wanted him to join an MBA course, but Mukund joined Officers Training Academy (OTA) in Chennai, after working in a call centre for a while. He passed OTA in 2004. He had also served the UN Mission in Lebanon. After he was posted in Kashmir, Indhu and Arsheya had stayed in the Army staff quarters in Bangalore .
Indhu said he never discussed professional matters, particularly risks. “He might have wanted to ensure family members should not feel anxious about his job in Kashmir. Nothing to worry was his usual reaction,’’ said Indhu, who worked as a technical writer before their marriage in 2009. “I think he was in a situation which every officer has to face,” said Indhu, whose father Dr George Varghese runs a medicine centre in Thiruvanathapuram.
Wife’s post on Facebook, Saturday
“There lived a man who loved me with all his heart… There lived a man who fathered my child/ There lived a man who
believed in integrity… There lived a man who loved his profession/ There lived a man who never feigned to be a hero… There lived a man who was my soul/ There lived a man with a heart full of generosity… There lived a man who revealed all to me…/There lived a man who loved me with his life… But now I wait/For he is with god… I know this for sure/One day I will meet him…I know this for sure/And he will give me that warm strong hug of his I know this for sure… And I will not complain that I can’t breath/I know this for sure…You can hug me…hug me all you want…”