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Lance Naik Karam Singh, Param Veer Chakar...

Discussion in 'History of Sikhism' started by Neutral Singh, Jul 5, 2004.

  1. Neutral Singh

    Neutral Singh
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    Lance Naik Karam Singh was born on 15 September 1915, in Barnala, Punjab. He was enrolled in 1 Sikh on 15 September 1941. He had earned a Military Medal in World War II. During the Jammu & Kashmir operations in the summer of 1948 the Indian Army made substantial gains in the Tithwal sector. The led to the capture of Tithwal of 23 May 1948. The enemy fled in utter confusion across the Kishanganga after dumping their arms and equipment in the river. But the enemy quickly recovered from this shock. They re-organised their forces and mounted a strong counter-attack to recover the lost ground. As a result, the Indian Army could not withstand the enemy pressure and withdrew from their positions across the Kishanganga river. Finally, they settled on the Tithwal ride to take on the enemy.

    The battle of Tithwal went on for months. The enemy could not, however, make a dent on the Indian defences. On October 13th, they launched a desperate attack in brigade strength to evict the Indian Army from their strongly held positions. The objective was to recapture Richhmar Gali to the south of Tithwal and to outflank the Indian Army by marching on to Nastachur Pass to the east of Tithwal. Both attempts failed. During this attack, some bitter fighting took place in the Richhmar Gali area on the night of October 13th. The attack commenced with heavy shelling of guns and mortar. The fire was so devastating that nearly all bunkers in the platoon area were damaged. In this action the 1 Sikh played a very important role in beating back the enemy onslaught. Lance Naik Karam Singh was commanding a forward outpost when the enemy launched the attack. His post was attacked by the enemy in vastly superior strength. The outpost was attacked eight times and the Sikhs repulsed the enemy every time. When ammunition ran short, Lance Naik Karam Singh joined the main company position, knowing fully well that due to the heavy enemy shelling no help would be forthcoming. Although himself wounded, he brought back two injured comrades with the help of a third mate.

    Ringed by enemy fire, it was almost impossible for them to break out. Ignoring all dangers, he crawled from place to place encouraging his men to keep up the fight. Often he beat back the enemy with grenades. Twice wounded, he refused evacuation and continued to hold on to the first-line trenches. The fifth enemy attack was very intense. Two enemy soldiers came so close to his position that he could not engage them without hitting his men. Lance Naik Karam Singh, jumped out of his trench and bayoneted the two intruders to death. This bold action so demoralised the enemy that they broke off the attack. Three more enemy attacks which followed were also repulsed by Lance Naik Karam Singh and his men. Lance Naik Karam Singh was an inspiration to his comrades and a threat to the enemy. He was honoured with the highest wartime gallantry medal, Param Vir Chakra, for his outstanding role in the battle of Tithwal.
     
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