President Ram Nath Kovind awarded India’s highest peacetime military decoration, the Ashok Chakra, posthumously to IAF Garud commando Corporal Jyoti Prakash Nirala, who laid down his life after fighting
terrorists in Jammu and Kashmir.
The award was received by Corporal Nirala’s wife Sushmanand and his mother Malti Devi at the majestic Rajpath (New Delhi).
After presenting the award to Corporal Nirala’s wife Sushma and mother Malti Devi at Rajpath, President Ram Nath Kovind was seen dabbing his eyes with his handkerchief. Corporal Nirala was part of a Garud Special Forces Unit of the IAF, a team of which was attached to a Rashtriya Rifles battalion as part of ‘Operation Rakshak’.
On November 18, an offensive was launched in a village in Bandipora based on specific intelligence. The Garud detachment covertly approached the target house where the terrorists were hiding and laid a close quarter ambush.
In the exchange of fire, Corporal Nirala was hit by a volley of bullets. Despite being critically injured, he kept firing.