“I will observe and obey the commands of any officer set above me, even to the peril of my life” — Oath of an Indian Army Officer.
The Combined Defense Service Examination is held two times every year in the months of March and October, an average of 4,00,000 people sit for the tests, out of which only 8,000 are made eligible to join the forces.
Before their formal integration into the army the young aspirants take a pledge to serve their nation before themselves, and if need be, sacrifice their lives in the line of duty, for their country.
An oath they take with great pride and happiness.
The mighty ask of that pledge came true for 18 soldiers from the 10 Dogra and 6 Bihar regiments on the fateful morning of 18th September. While most of India slept comfortably in their beds the small town of Uri — an Indian army base along the LoC, was under seize by a group of four militants who crossed the border into India.
In a pre-dawn ambush, the terrorists infiltrated the camps and lobbed 17 grenades in under three minutes at the sleeping soldiers instantly killing 18, and further injuring 30 support staff and personnel.
As the families of the fallen heroes and the rest of the world woke up to the news, everyone at the Ketto India headquarters too, was deeply saddened and shocked at the development.
As the day progressed, what followed was a rhetoric from the Government of India, that every Indian had come to learn and accept. Condemnation of the ‘dastardly attacks’ was followed by an announcement of compensation for the family of the soldiers.
When that money would actually reach their families was a question without answer.
As the catalyst of social change, Ketto decided to take charge of the situation and use every resource available to them to help the soldiers. The team proactively started fundraisers in the name of each of the 18 soldiers.
The idea was simple — the money would directly, immediately and effectively reach their families, the funds would be transferred to their personal bank accounts, there would be no lags, no middle-men and no red tape.
Most of the soldiers hailed from India’s poverty stricken state of Bihar, where the man of the house was usually the sole bread earner for the family and his sudden and tragic death would mean financial mayhem for his dear ones.
Individuals, start-ups, MNC’s, celebrities and schools made-up the 18 entities that came together to adopt a campaign each, for the martyrs. And the list is still counting.
The collective efforts of the campaigners and their supporters have met with great success. The sharing of the fundraisers on social-media has brought awareness and traction to all the pages, ensuring individual contributions from all over the country and beyond. The ripple effect has been significant and vast ensuring financial stability for the grieving families.
In no particular order, here are names of all our fallen soldiers:
Havildar Ashok Kumar Singh, Naik SK Vidarthi , Sepoy Rakesh Singh, Sepoy Ganesh Shankar, Sepoy Rajesh Kumar Singh, Sepoy Harinder Yadav, Havildar NS Rawat, Sepoy Naiman Kuju, Sepoy Uike Janrao, Sepoy Bishwajit Ghorai, Sepoy G Dalai, Subedar Karnail Singh, Havildar Ravi Paul, Sepoy Javra Munda, Lance Naik G Shankar, Lance Naik RK Yadav, Sepoy TS Somnath and Sepoy K Vikas Janardhan
We’ve started the ‘Support Soldiers’ initiative to help families of our martyred soldiers by facilitating crowdfunding for their survival and sustenance. This initiative will remain active for all days of the year, needless to say, especially when we’re hit by tragic and unfortunate news of another brave soldier losing his life while protecting the country at the border.
If you too would like to show support, then adopt a martyred soldier by starting a fundraiser for them, contribute to either of the fundraisers or simply spread the word by sharing the link with your friends and family or you can just write to use at email@example.com.
Support Soldiers — An initiative by Ketto: supportsoldiers.ketto.org
We strive for accuracy and fairness, if you see something that doesn’t look right, write to firstname.lastname@example.org.