India's first PVC was martyred on 3rd November seventy years agoThe raiders reached Baramulla located at a distance of less than one and a half hour drive from Srinagar. After much vacillation, the King had finally signed the Accession Treaty in favour of India.
The only power-station of Kashmir was destroyed by the raiders. There was no electricity in Srinagar. But, fortunately(!) for India, the raiders decided to loot, kill and plunder Baramulla. They started sending truckloads of war-booty to Pakistan. Indian Army got some very valuable time.
1 Sikh (CO Lt. Col. Diwan Ranjit Rai) under 161 Infantry Brigade landed at Srinagar. The navigation was taken care of by torchlight in the absence of electricity. They first secured the airport perimeter. Thereafter 4 Kumaon and 1 Kumaon landed at the airport.
After securing the airport perimeter, Brigd. L.P. Sen (CO 161 Infantry Brigade), decided to send a strong fighting patrol consisting of two companies of 4 Kumaon and one company of 1 Kumaon towards Badgam at a distance of 5 kilometer from Srinagar. The raiders by that time had started moving towards Srinagar by Muzzafarabad-Baramulla-Patan-Srinagar axis.
In the epic Battle of Badgam, fifty soldiers of D Company of 4 Kumaon under Major Somnath Sharma fought a heavily-armed 500 raiders consisting of Pakistani Army and murderous tribals from Pakistan. Ultimately the unspeakable gallantry of 4 Kumaon soldiers under Major Somnath Sharma stopped the raiders, but they themselves got decimated in the fighting.
On 3rd November, 1947 Major Somnath Sharma was martyred. Major Somnath Sharma of 4 Kumaon belonged to an illustrious military family and he was the first Param Vir Chakra owner (posthumous) of independent India. [His younger brother Vishwanath Sharma became India's Army Chief much later during late eighties.]
On 3rd November every year, Indian Army makes a silent resolve to protect Jammu & Kashmir from our sub-human neighbours at any cost. Let us also make a resolve to give every support to our Armed Forces to protect Jammu & Kashmir. Let us make a resolve not to be the part of vicious propaganda against our Armed Forces.
That would be the real tribute to Major Somnath Sharma, the first Param Vir Chakra owner of India.