Place of birth : Jammu Dist, J & K
Service : Army
Last Rank : Rifleman
Arm/Regt : JAK Rifles
Operation : CI & IS Ops
Martyrdom : February 6, 2022
Rifleman Vishal Sharma of Chakmalal-Khour village in Jammu district of Jammu & Kashmir. Son of an army veteran Babu Ram, he always wished to follow into the footsteps of his father and don Army uniform. Following his dream, he eventually joined the Army in the year 2015 after completing his school education.
He was recruited into the 19 JAK Rif battalion of the Jammu and Kashmir Rifles Regiment, an infantry Regiment known for its brave soldiers and rich history of various battle honours. Rfn Vishal Sharma was affable, cheerful and had pleasing manners which endeared him to everyone who came in contact with him. He also understood his responsibility very well and organized the marriage of his younger sister.
Avalanche (Indo-China Border) : 06 Feb 2022
During 2022, Rfn Vishal Sharma's unit 19 JAK Rif was deployed in West Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh near the Indo-China border. The AOR(Area of Responsibility) of the unit spanned over remote rugged mountainous terrain with extreme weather conditions, especially in the winter season. The unit troops were deployed on various forward posts and often undertook patrol to monitor the area in between the manned posts. The area, located at an altitude of 14,500 feet, witnessed inclement weather with heavy snowfall in the first week of Feb 2022. The area also recorded 90 mm rainfall between January 1 and February 8—more than 20% excess than normal. Also, heavy snowfall often blocked the roads and hampered the movement of troops which necessitated frequent clearance operations. Rfn Vishal Sharma and his comrades were part of one such patrol cum snow clearance team on 06 Feb 2022.
As the troops were traversing through the planned route in Chume Gyater area near Yangtse, closer to China border, a horrific avalanche struck them. The magnitude and suddenness of the avalanche did not give any time to Rfn Vishal Sharma and his comrades to take any evasive actions. As a result, Rfn Vishal Sharma and six other soldiers got trapped under tons of snow. A massive rescue operation was launched by the army and specialized equipment too were airlifted to aid the search. After searching for nearly two days, the rescue team eventually managed to locate the bodies of the soldiers on 08 Feb 2022, but by that time they had lost their lives owing to prolonged exposure to extreme cold conditions. Besides Rfn Vishal Sharma, the other brave hearts included Hav Jugal Kishore, Rfn Arun Kattal, Rfn Akshay Pathania, Rfn Rakesh Singh, Rfn Ankesh Bhardwaj and Gnr Gurbaj Singh. Rfn Vishal Sharma was a valiant and committed soldier, who laid down his life in the line of his duty.
Rfn Vishal Sharma is survived by his mother and a younger sister