Vikram Batra belongs to a Hindu family in Palampur, Himachal Pradesh. He was a son of a government school principal. He joined the Air Wing of the National Cadet Corps in his college. From his college life, he was interested in serving the nation. He cleared the exam of NCC, get the C certificate. After participating in the Republic day parade, he shared his thought with their parents that he wants to join the Indian Army.
1n 1995, he pursuing MA at Punjab University and start the preparation for Combined Defense Service Exam. In 1996, he joined Indian Military Academy(IMA). In 1997, after concluding training in IMA, he was commissioned as a lieutenant into the 13 JAK RIF.
In 1998, after undergoing many training and postings, he finally posted to Sopore, Baramulla District, J&K .He had many encounters with militants over there. In one operation, Batra was leading the platoon and had killed all the militants before the morning. In 1999, Batra completed his commando course at Belgaum, Karnataka.
In 1999, it was Holi time. Vikram Batra enjoying his vacation with his fiancée Dimple Cheema. In a conversation, Dimple said to Vikram Batra that he has to be careful about war. Then Batra smiled and replied-“I’ll either come back after raising the Indian flag in victory or return wrapped in it. But I’ll come back for sure.”
He returned to his troop from his hometown. After few days,13 JAK RIF reached Dras on 6 June 1999. The 18 Grenadiers failed to capture the peak of Tololing. But 2 RAJ RIF captured the peak on June 13, 1999. After the success of that mission, Vikaram Batra and his platoon were ordered to march from Dras to Tooling. Another mission was planned to capture point 5140, which was assigned to the 13 JAK RIF. Under the command of Lt. Col. Yogesh Kumar Joshi,13 JAK RIF found that the enemy covered some major areas from top to bottom of point 5140. Joshi decided to attack from the east and south sides by two teams, lead by Lt. Sanjeev Singh Jamwal, and Lt. Vikram Batra. Both choose their winning signal, Jamwal chooses “Oh! Yeah, yeah, yeah!” and Batra chooses “Ye Dil Mange More!”.
Artillery fire was used for covering support of these two assault companies while climbing point 5140. Both the companies reached their destination on 20 June. Jamwals company had first captured their objective. It was difficult for Batra to covered the enemy from the rear side of the hill, but Batra did that impossible task with his 5 team members and killed 3 enemies single-handedly in close combat. He was injured but never stopped there, rather lead his troops and captured their objective by sharing his slogan”Ye Dil Mange More!”.
He was promoted as Captain after capturing point 5140. After the great success of 13 JAK RIF, the troop moved to Mushkoh Valley under the command of 79 Mountain Bridge. The next task was to captured point 4875 in the Mushkoh Valley. It was the dangerous mission ever for 13 JAK RIF till now. They had to protect around 30-40km of the National Highway from Dras to Malayan. The Pakistani soldiers easily observed the moment and position of our soldiers, saw the gun positions, army camps from that peak.
On 4 July, the war began. The A and C Coys started their operation of capturing point 4875. But in the meanwhile, Batra was suffered from fatigue and fever. Although its day time, these two troops were consolidated their hold on point 4875 after heavy bombarding and machine-gun attacks, and artillery fire. On 5 July, Pakistani enemies attacked with heavy fire and accuracy from their position in north point 4875. Area Flat was captured by 13 JAK RIF on 5 July, that was the key objective of that mission, without that point Indian Army never succeed in their mission. Unfortunately within a few hours Pakistani enemies counter-attacked our soldiers and climbed faster to capture the peak. Captain N.A.Nagappa was lead a troop to fight against those enemies to acquire the peak. But suddenly he was badly injured. Pakistani soldiers were climbing faster as Nagappa was injured.
Batra observing all those things lying on the bed went to Mr.Joshi and insisted to let him go. As the team of Nagappa needed reinforcement, Vikram Batra and his team were ready to capture the peak 4875 and determined for this in any situation and circumstances. All the members of 13 JAK RIF wanted to join Batra for the honor of their battalion despite the orders of their seniors.
Batra began to climb with 25 members of D Coy at night. When the troop neared the top, they had to climb vertically, where the visibility was almost zero due to heavy fog. Batra found a machine gun of Pakistani soldiers and destroyed it with a grenade. Batra finally located the machine gun post of enemies, but unfortunately, no option was left without a direct frontal assault in daylight. Under heavy fire from enemies’ machine guns and grenade launchers, Batra killed 5 Pakistani soldiers with his AK-47. Batra saw one of his men was shot in this process. With heavy firing, Batra said his teammate Sub. Raghunath Singh evacuates that injured soldier. He also said to Singh, “You have a family and children to go back to, I am not even married”.Batra had continuously given his maximum effort to drag the soldier to a safe place, suddenly a bullet hit his chest from a very close distance, and after few seconds another on his head from an RPG. Batra lies down on that battleground.
He was aware of the great danger of his mission, but instead of all those things, he was never afraid of death. Vikram Batra was awarded Indian’s highest military honor, the Param Vir Chakra. His supreme sacrifices for his country will always be memorable.