'Life should be big, not long' was the motto shared by Captain Kapil Kundu on his Facebook profile and he lived by it. Martyred at the young age of 22, Captain Kundu proved everyone that you don't need a long life to be in nation's service.
Captain and three other soldiers lost their lives on Sunday when the Pakistani forces opened unprovoked firing and shelling along the LoC in the Bhimbher Gali sector of Rajouri district.
Kundu was just six-days short of his birthday. He would have turned 23 on February 10. A resident of village Ransika in Haryana's Gurgaon district, Captain Kundu is survived by widowed mother and a younger sister.
Slain army officer's mother asked the government to conduct a second surgical strike on Pakistan to avenge the deaths of martyrs. "If my son had lived for another 10-20 years, he would have done more for his nation, but he could not," said the grieving mother Sunita Kundu. "Our son lived for the nation," the family members added.
Captain Kundu's mother shared that he was due to visit the family for his birthday on February 10 and had already booked his ticket for the journey.
Deceased officer's sister, who was very close to him, told media that he used to love his cats and pen poetry. "He loved his job, he had cleared the NDA test in one go," said Captain Kundu's sister.
Forty-two-year-old Havildar Roshan Lal, a resident of Samba district, 27-year-old Riflemen Ramavatar of Gwalior in Madhya Pradesh and Subham Singh (23) of J&K's Kathua district were also killed.
People expressed anger and grief on social media against the incessant loss of lives due to the prevailing tensions along the LoC all year long.
Earlier in the day, two teenagers and a jawan were injured in Shahpur sector of Poonch district in shelling from across the border, a police official said.
A defence spokesman said the Pakistan Army initiated unprovoked and indiscriminate firing of small arms, automatic weapons and mortars around 1110 hours. The Indian Army retaliated strongly and effectively, he said.
In another ceasefire violation by Pakistan in Rajouri district, a police official said six mortars exploded near Neaka Panjgrain and Tarkundi villages in Manjakote sector around 3.40 pm.
The mortars were fired by Pakistani troops and the Indian forces guarding the LoC responded, triggering an exchange of fire between the two sides, he said.
Pakistani troops carried out intense shelling along the IB in Jammu, Kathua and Samba districts and LoC in Poonch and Rajouri districts from 18 January to 22 January.
While there were no ceasefire violations by Pakistan reported along the IB since 22 January, intermittent shelling has taken place along the LoC.