Service No : IC-11997

Date of Birth : December 10, 1938

Place of birth : Ahrod, Haryana

Service : Army

Last Rank : Major

Unit : 16 Madras

Arm/Regt : The Madras Regiment

Operation : Op Cactus Lily

Martyrdom : January 9, 1972

Major Raghunath Prasad Sharma

Major Raghunath Prasad Sharma was born on 10 Dec 1938 in his native village Ahrod in Haryana. Eldest of the 8 siblings, he was academically very bright right from his childhood. He completed his post graduation from Birla College, Pilani in Rajasthan. He then went on to join the Army at the age of 21 years and was commissioned on 13th December 1959 into 16 Madras of the famed Madras Regiment, a Regiment known for its valiant soldiers and numerous battle exploits.

 

As the Indo-China war broke out in 1962, Maj RP Sharma as a young lieutenant participated in operations in Ladakh region and honed his battle skills. He participated in another war in 1965 and was deployed on the western front in Rajasthan. During the war, he went behind enemy lines and survived for days under arduous conditions before he was finally rescued. He had suffered serious injuries and was brought to the Military Hospital in Pune where he recovered after getting treated for nearly 2 months.

 

Maj RP Sharma got married to Ms Geeta in 1964, and the couple had three daughters and a son. In 1966, he was appointed as ADC to the Governor of Andhra Pradesh, Sri Pattamthanu Pillai for 3 years. In 1971, another Indo-Pak war broke out and Maj RP Sharma once again set off along with his unit, 16 Madras to fight the war which turned out to be his last. Maj RP Sharma was a valiant soldier and an officer par excellence who always led from the front. He would often say to his wife, “Sher ban ke jiya hoon aur Sher ban ke rahunga.” He was a very fine poet too and wrote many poems for his wife and kids while deployed at the border.

 

Indo-Pak war – Dec 1971

 

During the 1971 Indo-Pak war, Maj RP Sharma’s unit was deployed in the Shakargarh sector on the western front. After his Commanding Officer, Lt Col Ved Prakash Ghai was martyred during the “Battle of Basantar”, Maj RP Sharma took over the command of his unit and continued to direct the operations. Though the war ended on 16 Dec 1971 after the surrender of Pakistani forces on the Eastern border, the border skirmishes were continuing on the western border. Shakargarh, Jaffarwal in the western sector was one such area where enemy was continuing operations to get into positions of advantage.

 

On 17 Dec 1971, during heavy artillery shelling by the enemy on positions held by 16 Madras, Maj RP Sharma got grievously injured in his leg, arm and neck. He was shifted to the Army Hospital, Delhi on 21st December 1971, where his left leg below the knee was amputated on 31st December 1971. But his condition worsened over the next few days and he was transferred to the Military Hospital in Bangalore on 8th January 1972. However, Maj RP Sharma succumbed to his injuries and was martyred on 09 Jan 1972. Maj RP Sharma was cremated with full military honours at Purana Pul, Hyderabad on 11th January 1972.

 

Maj Raghunath Prasad Sharma is survived by his wife Smt Geeta Sharma, daughters Dr Poonam Coshic, Smt Renu Mudgil & Dr Bharti Sharma and son Dr Manoj Sharma.

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67 Comments
  • Dr.Bharti Sharma

    2023at3:00 pm Reply

    When you left for your duty at border I was an year old…no memory’ of you .Got to hear stories of your bravery through my family members.All paint a picture of a caring ,jovial,poetic,brave and a family man.At a very young age you started to support your family.In my heart I always miss you .Sometimes I find myself what my life would have been if you had been there.
    Braving the bullets you left us …a legacy ..of service to our nation which all your children are trying our best to follow.
    Love you papa…
    Live in our lives guarding us from heaven as you always have.

  • Praveen Kumar

    2023at3:00 pm Reply

    I salute you. Jai Hind

  • Dr. Poonam Coshic

    2023at3:01 pm Reply

    Papa! you left us when we were very small and grew up inspired by your life and supreme sacrifice. All your kids have grown up to be sincere and honest citizens and fiercely patriotic. None of us could join armed forces but are serving the nation in our capacities. Your poetries and letters to mummy continue to inspire us. Miss you till date ! Love you!
    Jai Hind!!!!

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