Sandesh To A SoldierAugust 14, 2019
00:01:301.42 MB

Captain Saurabh Kalia: A Letter From His Mother

Captain Saurabh Kalia was born in Amritsar in 1976 and completed his entire education till graduation in Palampur, Himachal Pradesh. At the young age of 21 and standing at 6 feet 2 inches, he joined the Indian Military Academy in 1997.

He was almost immediately posted in the 4 JAT Regiment (Infantry) in the Kargil Sector which he joined in January 1999.

Trouble was already brewing. In the last fortnight of May 1999, Captain Saurabh went out on Patrol duty thrice. He is hailed as the first office to provide detailed intelligence about Pakistan’s large-scale intrusion into Kargil.

The fourth time Patrol Duty came up, Captain Saurabh volunteered to go in place of another slightly older officer. With five other soldiers, he went to Bajrang Post at the height of 14,000 feet in the Kaksar area where his group faced heavy firing from the Pakistan army. They returned fire and held their posts until they ran out of ammunition and their signal equipment went out of order.

They were captured on 15 May 1999 and kept in captivity for twenty two days without informing India about their Prisoner of War status. When Pakistan returned their bodies on 9 June, it was clear that they had been brutally tortured: broken teeth and bones, punctured eyes, cigarette burns, chopped off limbs and finally a fatal gun wound. But they didn’t give in and reveal any information that was demanded of them.

Captain’s Saurabh’s parents never got the opportunity to actually see him in a uniform since he was sent to war so soon after training. He became a martyr before his last salary arrived in his bank account, before he could see himself become a Captain. He gave his life in what came to be known as Operation Vijay, named after his mother, Vijay Kalia.

His last words to this mother before going to Kargil were: "Maa, tum dekhna. Ek din aisa kaam kar jaoonga ki saari duniya mein mera naam hoga.” (Maa, you see, one day I will do such a deed that the whole world will know my name).

See all the letters here.