An Innocent Face—Story Of A Marco

Indian Navy’s marine commando Amit Singh Rana is a lead mechanical engineer who was posted to Kashmir to be part of Op Rakshak. He has been awarded Shaurya Chakra for his bravery during Operation Danna and Operation Shok Baba in Jammu and Kashmir.

Marine Commandos & Op Rakshak

Many might not know that Operation Rakshak is an ongoing counter-insurgency and counter-terrorism operation which started during the height of insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir in June 1990. So far Indian Army has lost 753 of it’s brave soldiers during the operation, between 2007 and 2015.

Many might wonder– what is a Marine commando doing in Kashmir?

The fact is, Marcos have been deployed in the Wular lake area of Kashmir for the past many decades for counter terrorists operations. Presently a team of MARCOS is working alongside 5 RR (Rashtriya Rifles) deployed in Kashmir’s Watlab area near Wular lake. Ostensibly the highlands in Jhelum have a certain type of plantation which can be used by the terrorists to hide them and their equipment. MARCOS have been trained to dive underwater and carry out extensive searches in areas such as this.

Story of Marco Amit Singh Rana

In the month of May in 2018, the sailor was deployed for Op Rakshak in J&K. This was a year before article 370 was abrogated in Kashmir. The tension in the valley was apparent!

In the month of sep in 2018, during Op Danna, he as buddy of Lt Cdr Mahesh Kumar, shot dead one terrorist at extreme close quarters whilst giving cover to the Officer, who shot dead another terrorist. That day three terrorists were killed, two of whom were Pakistani terrorists, and a warlike store of weapons was recovered.

Then a few days later on 20-21 Sep, he was involved in a 28 hours long Op Shok Baba, alongwith 14 RR, when 5-6 terrorists were entrapped in a house at village Shok Baba.

Shok Baba is the forest area in Bandipora district of Kashmir.

The terrorists were from the Lashkar-e-Taiba who were hiding in a well-protected mud house/ cow shed. AS Rana and team volunteered to approach the cow shed with a heavy IED to destroy it. As a heavy volume of fire was unleashed by the balance MARCOS, the brave soldier quickly manoeuvred and placed the IED at the cow shed. Whilst manoeuvring in, he was fired upon but came out unscathed backed by close in cover fire by his buddy. The cow shed was blown up by the IED and three terrorists inside were eliminated.

Complete video here.

The sailor was hence instrumental in placing demolition charges under heavy fire from the terrorists which led to their successful elimination. Further, he played a vital role in engaging terrorists at close range and kept them pinned down to allow the operation to progress further. Indian Army commended his role during both operations. For his selfless actions in dire circumstances, Amit Singh Rana, LMEN was awarded “Shaurya Chakra”.

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