Service No: SS-37218
Date of Birth : Mar 4, 1972
Birth place: Jaipur, Rajasthan
Last Rank: Capt
Unit : 4 Jat
Arm/Regt : The Jat Regiment
Date of Martyrdom : May 17, 1999
Capt Amit Bhardwaj was born on 4th March 1972 and hailed from Jaipur in Rajasthan. Son of Shri O P Sharma and Smt Sushila Sharma, Capt Amit grew up with very good moral values from a very tender age and would donate some part of his pocket money to the poor from the age of seven. He completed his schooling from St. Xavier’s Boys school and was an active member of St. Xavier’s Old Boys Association. He was a keen sportsman and excellent table tennis and football player.
Capt Amit Bhardwaj’s politeness during his student days, won the hearts of his teachers and students alike, making him a very popular figure in the school. He completed his graduation from Rajasthan University and always had a desire to join the armed forces and serve his motherland. He joined the army in 1997 and was commissioned into the 4 Jat of the famed Jat Regiment, a regiment known for its valiant soldiers and numerous battle honours. After his first tenure at Pithoragarh, Capt Amit Bhardwaj was posted to Kaksar area in Kargil.
Kargil War: 17 May 1999
There were reports about Pakistani infiltration in May 1999 and Capt Bhardwaj’s unit was given the task to verify the legitimacy of these reports. On May 14, the 4th Jat Battalion launched a patrol to check the strategically important Bajrang post with Lt Saurabh Kalia leading the five-man patrol. Heavy snowing in the area prevented them from reaching Bajrang post on that day, and they resumed their patrol the day after. But as they neared their objective around 3.30 pm on May 15, they were suddenly fired upon by the intruders who had occupied the Bajrang Post. They reported the incident back to battalion headquarters, seeking urgent reinforcements. Lt Kalia and his team fought back but soon ran out of ammunition. They were surrounded and captured before the reinforcements arrived.
Capt Amit Bhardwaj then led a team of 30 soldiers and launched the search mission for Lt Kalia and his troops on 17th May 1999. On reaching the Bajrang post, he realized that the number of enemies was much more than they had anticipated. Realizing that they were outnumbered, he ordered his men to retreat back and report to the base camp for help. For the retreat to be successful, one had to provide cover fire and engage the enemy while the troops retreated. He led from the front to provide cover fire which enabled his 30 soldiers to reach back their base camp safely. Capt Bhardwaj killed more than 10 infiltrators in the process. He had one soldier Hav Rajbir Singh supporting him alongside. However, Capt Bhardwaj and his fellow soldier got severely injured during the exchange of fire and later succumbed to their injuries.
Capt Bhardwaj’s body could not be retrieved until the end of the war, on July 13, 1999. Finally, his body was recovered 57 days after his martyrdom. Capt Bhardwaj’s weapon was found to be in his hand when his body was recovered. Capt Bhardwaj’s family refused to believe the rumors about his death and believed that their son was still alive, fighting the enemy in the border. The family was still hoping to hear from Capt Bhardwaj but the inevitable was finally confirmed when his body was recovered after 57 days of his martyrdom. Capt Amit Bhardwaj was a valiant soldier and an officer par excellence who laid down his life in the service of the nation.
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