On February 14, 2017, when Indian Army’s troops were conducting a search operation in Bandipora in Kashmir, the terrorists hiding in the area started firing on them. That was when the Commanding Officer of CRPF’s 45th Battalion, Chetan Cheetah stalled the terrorists, getting fatally shot by them in a fierce gunbattle.
While three other soldiers succumbed to their wounds, Chetan was riddled with bullets across his brain, right eye, abdomen, arms, and in the buttock. However, he did not give up and gave a hard hitting reply to the terrorists.
Even after receiving nine bullet shots that left him severely injured, he had thwarted the terrorist mission.
Chetan was admitted in AIIMS Delhi where he was in coma for 1.5 months before regaining consciousness. His love for the nation and his spirit to fight against the terrorists could not be shaken even slightly.
After a long battle with life and death, Chetan started recovering. Even though he lost his one eye in the fight, he expressed the desire of going back to combat role as soon as he can. People would think that he won’t be able to live his life the way he used to, but that couldn’t shake his determination.
Recently, Chetan joined his team back. Decked in a Khaki uniform, wearing an eye-patch on his right eye, and metal glasses, he left for his duty.
“I am proud to resume my duty again. It is good to be back. This is my second skin,” he said to a website, referring to the uniform.
It was not just a proud moment for him and his family but also for all his team members who were glad to have such a strong and determined man back in their team. The bullet wounds are still visible on Chetan’s hand, where the flesh seems to have been cut off.
“My physiotherapy is going on. And, I am fighting fit. If my force and my country want me to go to field area and do operations. There will be no hesitation,” he says. For now, Chetan will be given office related work as he has not completely recovered to go back to combat duties.
Chetan received the second highest gallantry medal, Kirti Chakra from the government of India. He still regrets the loss of his three peers who succumbed to their injuries in the gunfire. He wishes that he could save them.
Chetan wants the youngsters to give 100 percent to the country. “The duty which I had, I could have escaped, but instead, I faced the bullets,” he says.
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