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Family’s lone breadwinner, soldier at 19, avid biker: Kin remember Indian Army’s H Vaisakh

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Chennai: Aged 24, he was the family’s lone breadwinner. Serving the Indian Army from the age of 19, he had managed to secure a loan (that is still being repaid) and recently built a house for his mother and sister, and also purchased a car for the family. Despite the immense responsibility that he had to shoulder from a very young age, he had enthusiastically asked for a posting in Jammu and Kashmir (one of the most dangerous conflict zones in the world), to serve his motherland. “Chasing my dreamz”, accompanied by emoticons of a uniformed soldier, a home, a bike, a car and family is how he describes himself on his WhatsApp about page. That’s Sepoy H.Vaisakh for you, the young Braveheart from Kollam, Kerala who made the supreme sacrifice for India, while fighting terrorists in J&K.

According to his younger cousin Abhijith, it was barely 4 months ago that Vaisakh’s mother and sister had moved into their new home, which Vaisakh had built at the Odanavattom village, their native. Moving into the new residence was a ray of hope for the family, which had been plagued by financial issues. During Vysakh’s childhood, the family had to stay in a rented house for several years, after selling their own house and land to meet their financial liabilities. It was after Vysakh started serving the Army that he saved every bit of his income to take care of his tightly-knit family, which meant the world to him.

“It was about two months ago, following the death of his maternal grandmother, that he stepped into his own home (which he so dearly planned and constructed). Back then, he couldn’t make it on time for the funeral, but he came on leave a couple of days later and performed the rituals. That’s when he told us about his decision to voluntarily ask for posting in Jammu and Kashmir. None from our family have served the Armed forces, but from a very young age Annan (elder brother) was extremely determined on joining the Army” Abhijith recalled to Zee Media.

Naushad, the Secretary of Quilon Mallu Soldiers (a registered non-profit trust working for Armed forces personnel and their families), recalls Vaisakh as a dynamic young man, who always took active part in their events. The trust is now making arrangements at the residence of the soldier, to receive the mortal remains, perform crowd control work amid COVID-19 and help the family during their hour of inconsolable grief. The mortal remains of the soldier are expected to reach the native village by late Wednesday night or on Thursday, following which the public would be allowed to pay their respects at the nearby school, where Vaisakh studied.

“An avid traveller and adventurer, Vysakh loved his Royal Enfield ‘Bullet’ and also had recently purchased a car for the family” his cousin added. Having grown up and played together, Abhijith can’t believe that his elder brother who was always full of life, is no more with them. Mohankumar, Vaisakh’s maternal uncle remembers him as an extremely affable, good-natured person, who was very hardworking and had the sole mission of giving a better life for his modest family. “Getting his younger sister (who recently completed her college education) happily married was among his top priorities, while his own needs and wants came last” 

Five army personnel, including a Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO), were killed in an encounter with terrorists at the Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir, on Monday. The soldiers lost their lives in firing by terrorists in a village close to Dera Ki Gali in Surankote area of the border district of Poonch, after the Army and police launched a joint operation based on intelligence inputs about the presence of terrorists who had infiltrated from Pakistan, by crossing the Line of Control(LoC). During the operation, terrorists brought down a heavy volume of fire on Army troops, which led to five Indian Army soldiers being killed in action. Naib Subedar (JCO) Jaswinder Singh, a recipient of Sena Medal, Naik Mandeep Singh, Sepoys Gajjan Singh, Saraj Singh and H.Vaisakh, made the supreme sacrifice for the motherland.

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