BY OUR CORRESPONDENT
GILGIT: As Havildar Jumma Khan - who was killed at Line of control by cross broader shelling - was laid to rest in his village on Friday, his younger brother Azhar Mehmood pledges to follow the footsteps of his brother.
Havildar Jumma Khan was one of the two Pakistani soldiers to sacrifice their lives after Indian artillery resorted to unprovoked firing along the Line of Control in Bhimber, Kel and Lipa sectors on Thursday.
“We are proud of our brother for the sacrifice that he offered for his homeland,” said Mehmood, who is also in Pakistan army and currently posted at Azad Kashmir where skirmishes between Indian and Pakistan army resulted in death of his brother Jumma Khan.
“Now I’m ready to offer my life for my motherland and that’s something everyone here is ready for,” Mehmood told media after the burial ceremony that took place at Faqir Kote, a small village in Astore valley of Gilgit-Baltistan.
Force commander FCNA Maj Gen Saqib Mehmood, Brigadier Kamran Nazir, among senior government and military officials attended the funeral prayers.
Speaking to media Maj Gen Saqib Mehmood paid rich tribute to Jumma Khan for the valour he showed while fighting the enemies. “We will defend every inch of our soil like Khan did. He was a brave son of soil and he will be remembered.”
He said civilian government and army leadership were on same page to defend the country and its people.
According to Rafiullah Afridi, the funeral prayer was the biggest in terms of attendance in history of Astore valley where difficult mountainous terrain tend to pose a lot of challenges for movement. “It was mammoth gathering and I wondered where all those came from,” Afridi, a resident told Outpost.
Havildar Jumma Khan, who had one son and two daughters, joined northern light infantry (NLI) regiment of Pakistan Army in 1996.
Published in Outpost on October 1, 2016