Service No : IC-34425
Date of Birth : 17 Sep 1949
Birth place: Hoshiarpur, Punjab
Last Rank: Lieutenant Colonel
Unit: 13 Rashtriya Rifles
Arm/Regt : The Bihar Regiment
Awards: Ashok Chakra
Date of Martyrdom : 02 Nov , 1996
Lt Col Shanti Swarup Rana, was born on 17 September 1949 in village Badla of Hoshiarpur district in Punjab. Youngest among his four brothers and three sisters, Lt Col Rana had his early education in a Govt School in Rampur, in Hoshiarpur district. He was among the best students of his class and was very popular with his classmates owing to his kind and affectionate nature.
As Lt Col Rana grew older, his passion for Army also grew. He initially joined the Army in the Corps of Signals and was later selected for the Army Cadet College, Dehra Dun. After completing his training, he was commissioned into 3 Bihar on 11 July 1977. A veteran of Operation Rhino, Operation Pawan and Operation Rakshak he became second-in-command of the 13 Rashtriya Rifles, after being promoted to the rank of Lt Col in 1994.
Hafurda Forest Operation : 02 Nov 1996
On 02 Nov 1996, Lt Col Rana was entrusted with the task of destroying two terrorist camps in the Hafurda forest of Kupwara district in Jammu & Kashmir. Lt Col Rana spotted four well-fortified hideouts stocked heavily with arms & ammunition including 800 kg of explosives. In a gallant & swift strike he, with his troops, crawled towards the bunker and threw hand grenades and destroyed the hideouts.
Subsequently one more hideout was noticed by the troops. During the action that followed, the terrorists resorted to heavy firing from their well fortified bunkers. Lt Col Rana organized his troops, crawled towards the bunker and threw hand grenades inside. When two foreign mercenaries emerged firing indiscriminately, Lt Col Rana showed exceptional courage and killed both of them.
Meanwhile the terrorists seriously injured Lt Col Rana in heavy firing from another location. In spite of this, the gallant officer kept on boosting the morale of his soldiers. When one more terrorist advanced towards the soldiers, Lt Col Rana, without caring for his own life, charged and killed him in a face-to-face encounter. However during this process , the gallant officer suffered more injuries and made the supreme sacrifice.
Lt Col Rana was given the nation’s highest peace time gallantry award, “Ashok Chakra” (posthumous) for his exceptional bravery , indomitable spirit, leadership and supreme sacrifice.
The citation for Ashok Chakra awarded to Lt Col Shanti Swarup Rana reads –
On 2 November 1996, Lt Col Swarup Rana while serving with 13 Rashtriya Rifles was entrusted with the task of destroying two terrorist camps in the Hafurda forest of Kupwara District in Jammu & Kashmir. He spotted four well fortified hideouts stocked heavily with arms and ammunition including tonnes of explosives. In a gallant and swift strike, he destroyed these hideouts. One more well concealed hideout came to his notice. During the action that followed, the terrorists resorted to heavy firing from their well fortified bunker. Lt Col Rana organised his troops, crawled towards the bunker and threw hand grenades inside. Two foreign mercenaries came out firing heavily. He killed both of them instantaneously.
Meanwhile, the terrorists seriously injured Lt Col Rana in heavy firing from another location. In spite of this, the gallant officer kept on boosting the morale of his soldiers. When one more terrorist advanced towards the soldiers, Lt Col Rana without caring for this own life, charged and killed him in a hand-to-hand encounter. In this action, this gallant officer sustained fatal bullet injuries and made the supreme sacrifice. Lt Col Rana displayed indomitable courage, patriotism and gallantry of the highest order. For this act of indomitable courage, Lt Col SS Rana was awarded the Ashoka Chakra posthumously.
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