Service No : IC-38542N
Place of birth : Ahmednagar DIst (MH)
Service : Army
Last Rank : Major
Unit : 12 Maratha LI
Arm/Regt : The Maratha Light Infantry
Operation : CI & IS Ops
Awards : Sena Medal
Martyrdom : April 20, 1996
Major Jawed Swali Bakali hailed from Kedgaon village of Ahmednagar district in Maharashtra. He completed his schooling from Sacred Heart Convent High School, Ahmednagar. Later he joined the army and got commissioned on 18 Dec 1979, into 12 MLI battalion of the Maratha Light Infantry Regiment, an infantry regiment well known for its gallant soldiers and a number of battle honours. After completing his training, he served in various challenging operational areas and developed into a fine officer with commendable soldierly skills. After serving for some time, he got married to Ms Rahat and the couple was blessed with two sons Zain and Amaan. Before getting posted to the trouble torn Kashmir valley, he served in Punjab and the North East, and took part in a number of counter insurgency operations.
Kupwara Operation : 20 Apr 1996
During Apr 1996, Maj Jawed Swali Bakali's unit 12 MLI was deployed in the Kupwara district of J & K and was engaged in operations against the militants on a frequent basis. The volatility of the unit's AOR (Area of Responsibility) demanded 'high alert' at all times on the part of the troops. The area was also prone to infiltration, which necessitated regular armed patrols to check any infiltration from across the border. Maj JS Bakali was functioning as Company Commander of one the companies of his battalion stationed in the Kupwara district. Based on the information received from the intelligence sources about the presence of one dreaded terrorist by the name Sher Khan and few others in one village in the unit's AOR, a decision was taken to launch an operation to neutralize the terrorists. Maj JS Bakali, who was deployed at the division HQs at that time, rushed to the suspected area along with his team of 26 soldiers specially trained on guerrilla warfare. The suspected village was fairly big in area and the soldiers were not enough to have an effective cordon, but Maj JS Bakali did not want to delay the operation and miss an opportunity.
As planned the team led by Maj Bakali reached the suspected area in the morning of 20th Apr 1996 and launched the search and cordon operation. Maj Bakali deployed his troops to encircle the suspected three storied house and asked the terrorists to surrender. The terrorists who were armed with automatic weapons responded with indiscriminate firing to break the cordon. A fierce gun battle followed thereafter with both sides exchanging heavy fire. Maj Bakali deployed his soldiers tactically to have a tight cordon and plug their escape routes. The firing continued from 9 am to 1 pm but there was no headway. Maj Bakali then decided to blow up the building to force the terrorists out. As the building caught fire, the hidden terrorists ran out and Maj Bakali himself eliminated two terrorists with his weapon. However one of the injured terrorists while fleeing shot Maj Bakali him from close range. Undeterred by his grievous injuries and refusing evacuation, Maj Bakali kept directing his troops. Eventually the troops managed to neutralize 11 terrorists. However Maj Bakali later succumbed to his injuries and was martyred, but his gallant action paved the way for the troops to complete the operation successfully. Maj Maj JS Bakali was a committed soldier and a brave officer who led from the front and laid down his life in the service of the nation. Maj Jawed Swali Bakali was given the gallantry award, “Sena Medal” for his exceptional courage, fighting spirit and supreme sacrifice.
Major Jawed Swali Bakali is survived by his wife Smt Rahat Bakali and two sons Shri Zain Bakali and Shri Amaan Bakali.