Captain Vijayant Thapar and cute 6 year old Rukhsana

Captain Vijayant Thapar Early life

He is not only won a gold medal in water polo but also clinched a Silver medal at IMA for being the second-best cadet in the whole batch. 

He was commissioned on Saturday, 12th December 1998. Initially, he was in the Rajputana Rifles at Gwalior, the 2nd battalion, where he was commissioned, soon moved to Kupwara. 

Rukhsana and Captain Vijayant Thapar

It is here that this soldier’s unique story began, with a cute 6-year-old Kashmiri girl, Rukhsana.

Her parents were brutally murdered by the Salafi terrorists in a murderous assault, and Rukhsana, shell shocked, turned into a living corpse, unable to react, unable to speak.

Chance brought her to the attention of Captain Vijayant Thapar, who met Rukhsana at her village school and was deeply moved by her tale.

He tried his best, initially met with failures, but ultimately he brought the chirpy Rukhsana back. Along with his faithful helper, Sepoy Jagmal Singh Shekhawat, he used to find time from his grueling schedule and would meet Rukhsana every evening, bringing sweets and toffees for her. He took care of her like his own child.

Kargil War 1999

Cut to 1999. Kargil War has begun. The 2nd Rajputana Rifles, led by Colonel M.B. Ravindranathan, has been called to the assistance of the 18 Grenadiers battalion, who have sustained heavy casualties in their initial assaults to reclaim the peak of Tololing. 

With his best friend, and company commander, Major Padmapani Acharya, Captain Vijayant Thapar did his duty well, reclaiming the Tololing peak for India.

Unfortunately, he never returned, and died fighting at the Knoll Complex, an ugly mountain sandwiched between Tiger Hill and Tololing, on the dark night of Tuesday, 29th June 1999.

He was only 22 when he gave his life for the honor of the motherland. Before dying, he wrote a final letter to his parents, saying that he would be watching them from the skies, by the time they read his letter.

Last Letter of Captain Vijayant Thapar

Last Letter of Captain Vijayant Thapar
Last Letter of Captain Vijayant Thapar

Rukhsana after Captain Vijayant Thapar Death

In his last letter, he did not forget Rukhsana at all and asked his parents to contribute Rs. 50 to her every month (in those days, Rs. 50 mattered a lot). 

The bereaved parents duly followed this last wish of his, and a decade later, Rukhsana, who owes her life to Captain Vijayant. Today, she can read and write, and speak Kashmiri, English, and Urdu, as per the statements of parents of Captain Vijayant Thapar. 

They even gave Rukhsana a mobile phone to stay in touch with them. According to Col. V.N. Thapar, their son lives in Rukhsana’s eyes, heart, and minute.

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