Kollam: The mortal remains of an Indian army soldier from Kerala, who was killed in an encounter with terrorists three days ago, was cremated here on Thursday amidst heavy rain with full military honours.
Vaishakh H of Rashtriya Rifle Battalion was among the five Army personnel, including a Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO), who died in a gunfight with terrorists during an operation in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir on Monday.
Prior to the funeral, his body was kept at his childhood LP school in Kudavattoor village and then at his home for public viewing and a huge crowd, including those who had no connection with the soldier, turned up to pay their last respects.
Kerala Finance Minister K N Balagopal, who was representing the state government, Mavelikkara MP Kodikunnil Suresh and state Animal Husbandry Minister J Chinchu Rani and several senior government and Army officials were also present at the slain soldier’s home to pay their last respects.
After the gun salute, as part of the military honours, when the National Flag was presented to the family, Vaisakh”s mother broke down and called out for her son and subsequently, she fainted.
The crowd gathered at the site were heard shouting anti-Pakistan slogans and ”Bharat Mata ki Jai” during the funeral service.
After the guard of honour, Vaishakh”s remains were cremated as per Hindu rites.
His remains arrived here on Wednesday and were kept at the Military Hospital in Pangode.