Captain Vijayant Thapar - Part 1: A Letter From His Father Colonel VN Thapar
Sandesh To A SoldierAugust 14, 201900:02:52

Captain Vijayant Thapar - Part 1: A Letter From His Father Colonel VN Thapar

Vijayant Thapar was born into an Army family. His great-grandfather, his grandfather and his father all served in the Indian Army, so it was easy for him to decide what he wanted to do in life. From a young age, he would take his father’s peak cap, his cane and march around like a soldier. One of his parents’ earliest memories is of him running around in the garden with their two dogs, chasing butterflies and doing mock charges on friendly langoors. Vijayant worked hard to realise this dream and was eventually selected for the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun. He was commissioned on 12 December 1998 and joined the 2 Rajputana Rifles at Gwalior. After several counter terrorist operations, his unit was ordered to move to Drass to capture Tololing, Tiger Hill and adjoining heights. On 28 June, 2 Rajputana Rifles was given the task of capturing Tololing, Three Pimples, Knoll and Lone Hill area. Again, Pakistan had all the advantages: a full moon night, strongly prepared positions, one narrow ridge, precipitous slopes on both sides, ravines thousands of feet deep, no cover and almost vertical climbs at places. The attack began and soon there was intense artillery shelling and enemy fire. Still, he, along with his troop, continued to move through a ravine towards their destination. At 8 PM that night, 120 guns opened fire. Undeterred, Captain Thapar led his team into this inferno. Somehow, the company secured a foothold on Knoll. Around this time, Captain Thapar heard the news of his company commander Major P Acharya being killed in the Battle of Tololing. This angered him like no other and along with his colleague Naik Tilak Singh, he starting engaging with the enemy from as close as 15 meters. He fought against two machine guns directly firing at him for an hour and a half after which he decided to move up and kill the enemy from closer range. Just then, a burst of fire struck him and he fell into the arms of Tilak Singh. He was only 22-years-old. After this, his men charged ahead and fully captured Knoll, giving the Indian Army yet another of its decisive victories in the Kargil War. See all the letters here.
Vijayant Thapar was born into an Army family. His great-grandfather, his grandfather and his father all served in the Indian Army, so it was easy for him to decide what he wanted to do in life. From a young age, he would take his father’s peak cap, his cane and march around like a soldier. One of his parents’ earliest memories is of him running around in the garden with their two dogs, chasing butterflies and doing mock charges on friendly langoors. Vijayant worked hard to realise this dream and was eventually selected for the Indian Military Academy, Dehradun. He was commissioned on 12 December 1998 and joined the 2 Rajputana Rifles at Gwalior. After several counter terrorist operations, his unit was ordered to move to Drass to capture Tololing, Tiger Hill and adjoining heights. On 28 June, 2 Rajputana Rifles was given the task of capturing Tololing, Three Pimples, Knoll and Lone Hill area.

Again, Pakistan had all the advantages: a full moon night, strongly prepared positions, one narrow ridge, precipitous slopes on both sides, ravines thousands of feet deep, no cover and almost vertical climbs at places. The attack began and soon there was intense artillery shelling and enemy fire. Still, he, along with his troop, continued to move through a ravine towards their destination. At 8 PM that night, 120 guns opened fire. Undeterred, Captain Thapar led his team into this inferno.

Somehow, the company secured a foothold on Knoll. Around this time, Captain Thapar heard the news of his company commander Major P Acharya being killed in the Battle of Tololing. This angered him like no other and along with his colleague Naik Tilak Singh, he starting engaging with the enemy from as close as 15 meters. He fought against two machine guns directly firing at him for an hour and a half after which he decided to move up and kill the enemy from closer range. Just then, a burst of fire struck him and he fell into the arms of Tilak Singh. He was only 22-years-old.

After this, his men charged ahead and fully captured Knoll, giving the Indian Army yet another of its decisive victories in the Kargil War.

See all the letters here.