After 45 yrs, 1971 war hero's family sees his grave

After 45 yrs, 1971 war hero's family sees his grave

The battle of Hilli on the Eastern frontier was the most crucial and pitched battle in  1971 Indo-Pak war. The Pakistani resistance at Gangasagar in erstwhile East Pakistan fell because Lance Naik Albert Ekka of the 14 Guards muzzled the enemy, losing his life.

45 years later, on Monday his family was able to pay a visit to his grave on the outskirts of Tripura’s capital Agartala, the epicentre of the war that resulted in the creation of Bangladesh. 

On Monday Balamdina, the widow Lance Naik Albert Ekka, recipient (posthumously) of Param Vir Chakra (PVC) , India’s highest war-time gallantry award  and his son Vincent and a delegation from Jharkhand, his native state, visited the burial site where Ekka was buried in Dukli area in the outskirts of Agartala and collected “sacred soil” from his graveyard.

End of last year, the Tripura government with the help of Indian Army collected the Urn of Ekka and sent it to Jharkhand. But a controversy erupted after Jharkhand Chief Minister Raghubar Das handed over the urn containing the “soil of the grave”. Ekka’s family had raised ‘doubts’ on the authenticity of the ‘sacred soil’.

According to Army sources, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar himself looked into the matter and thus a visit to the graveyard was organised so that the family can see for themselves and collect the ‘sacred soil’, government sources added.

On Monday, Ekka’s family along with a team from Jharkhand were taken to the War memorial and Ekka’s grave by senior officers of Assam Rifles along with Tripura government officials. While Ekka’s wife paid tribute, Assam Rifles troopers offered gun salute.

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