Colonel B Santosh Babu and some of the other Indian Army personnel, who were killed while valiantly fighting Chinese troops in the Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh in June last year, are expected to be honoured with gallantry awards on Republic Day, sources said on Monday.
Col Babu, the commanding officer of the 16 Bihar regiment, was among 20 Indian soldiers who laid down their lives in the fierce hand-to-hand combat on June 15 in the Galwan Valley, an incident that marked one of the most serious military conflicts between the two sides in decades.
China is yet to disclose the number of its soldiers killed and injured in the clash though it officially admitted to having suffered casualties. According to an American intelligence report, the number of casualties on the Chinese side was 35.
The Galwan Valley clash had escalated the border row in eastern Ladakh and resulted in a large deployment of troops and heavy weaponry by both the armies in the friction points.
“Some of the Army personnel including Col Babu who displayed extreme courage during the Galwan clash are expected to be honoured on Republic Day,” said a source.
The Chinese soldiers used stones, nail-studded sticks, iron rods and clubs in carrying out brutal attacks on Indian soldiers after they protested the erection of a surveillance post by China around patrolling point 14 in the Galwan Valley.
The Indian Army has already built a memorial for the ”Gallants of Galwan” at Post 120 in eastern Ladakh.