Service No : IC-21909

Date of Birth : June 30, 1943

Place of birth : Wardha, Maharashtra

Service : Army

Last Rank : Captain

Unit : 35 Lt Regt

Arm/Regt : The Regiment of Artillery

Operation : Op Cactus Lily

Awards : Vir Chakra

Martyrdom : December 8, 1971

Capt Ashok Kumar Karkare VrC

Captain Ashok Kumar Karkare was born in Wardha, Maharashtra on 30th June 1943. Son of Mr KB Karkare, he joined the Indian Army after completing his initial education. He was commissioned into the Regiment of Artillery, an important combat support arm of Indian Army well known for its field guns, howitzers and heavy weaponry. Barely few years into service, Capt Ashok Kumar Karkare got involved into thick of operations as his unit got deployed on the western border, when the war with Pakistan became imminent. 

 

Defence of Khalra (Indo-Pak war) : 08 Dec 1971

 

During Indo- Pak 1971 war Capt Ashok Kumar Karkare’s unit 35 Lt Regt was deployed in the Western Sector. The unit was deployed in Punjab sector under 65 Infantry Brigade functioning under the operational control of 7 Infantry Division. 7 Inf Div under Maj Gen Freemantle was assigned the task of defending the sensitive areas of Harike and Hussainiwala headworks and Ferozepur town by denying the main routes of ingress from Pakistan into the area of his operational responsibility, namely Khalra-Patti Harike, Khemkaran-Patti-Harike, Khemkaran-Bhikhiwind -Amritsar, and Hussainiwala-Ferozepur. The main defences were to be based along the obstacle belt with covering troops deployed between the border and the belt. As part of ongoing operations 14 Rajput battalion deployed in the area was tasked to capture Khalra objective along with Artillery support. The Artillery support was to be provided by 35 Lt Regt. Capt Karkare was tasked to function as the forward observation officer with a company 14 Rajput battalion during their attack on Khalra. 

 

On 07 Dec 1971, as the attack commenced, the enemy immediately brought down intense artillery fire inflicting heavy casualties on our troops. Capt Karkare secured a captured enemy artillery radio set and through it misguided the enemy, thereby diverting enemy artillery fire and saving casualties to our troops. On the morning of 8 December, the enemy launched determined counter-attacks with infantry supported by armour. Undeterred by the heavy shelling and small arms fire, Capt Karkare directed own artillery in an accurate manner and was instrumental in repulsing the attacks. He continued to engage the enemy till the troops had extricated themselves from the position. While Capt Karkare  was himself withdrawing, he was hit by a machine gun burst and was martyred on the battle-field. Capt Karkare was a gallant soldier and a gritty officer who led from the front and laid down his life at the age of 28 years in the line of his duty.

 

Capt Ashok Kumar Karkare was given the gallantry award “Vir Chakra” for his outstanding courage, fighting spirit and supreme sacrifice.  

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4 Comments
  • Sandip Chowdhry

    2022at1:49 pm Reply

    Yes I got it The first martyrs of TAFS
    Proud of you
    RIP

    Vir Chakra (VrC)
    Awardee: Capt Ashok Kumar Karkare, VrC

    Gazette Notification: 77 Pres/72,17-6-72
    Operation: 1971 Cactus Lily
    Date of Award: 08 Dec 1971

    Citation:
    Captain Ashok Kumar Karkare of the Regiment of Artillery was the forward observation officer with a company of a Rajput Regiment during their attack on Khalra in the Western Sector. The enemy immediately brought down intense artillery fire inflicting heavy casualties on our troops. Captain Karkare secured a captured enemy artillery radio set and through it misguided the enemy, thereby diverting enemy artillery fire and saving casualties to our troops. On the morning of 8 December, the enemy launched determined counter-attacks with infantry supported by armour.

    Undeterred by the heavy shelling and small arms fire, Captain Karkare directed own artillery in an accurate manner and was instrumental in repulsing the attacks. He continued to engage the enemy till our troops had extricated themselves from the position. While he was himself withdrawing, he was hit by a machine gun burst and killed on the spot. Throughout, Captain Karkare displayed gallantry, leadership and devotion to duty of a high order.
    Tributes
    From
    Centafians,Tafsians,
    Ocenta

    We have not forgotten you sir

  • Sandip Chowdhry

    2022at1:49 pm Reply

    Salutes to the Martyrs from Air Force Central School in Delhi Cantt

  • Sandipchowdhry

    2022at1:49 pm Reply

    Salutes
    Jaihind

  • Shubham Singh

    2022at1:50 pm Reply

    Salute to the Braveheart!
    Jai Hind!!

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