Captain Vijayant Thapar (Dec 26, 1976 – June 29, 1999) was killed fighting the intruders in Drass, Kargil, in the Indo-Pak war of 1999. He was just 22 when he died braving the enemy on the icy heights of Knoll and Three Pimples in Drass.
Brave Captain Vijayant Thapar had premonitions of the future, therefore he thought of penning down ‘a letter that shook the entire country.’
To those who visited Capt. Vijayant’s house after hearing the news, Col. Thapar said: “No, it’s not about, he was just 22. Life is not measured in length but in depth. He is a hero, he will remain immortal in our heart & mind”
“I’ve no regrets, in fact even if I become a human again, I’ll join the Army and fight for my nation,” Capt. Vijayant wrote in his letter to the family.
21 Years after Vijayant’s death, his father, Col. VN Thapar & Neha Dwivedi wrote a book on the valour of his son, the Kargil Hero Capt. Thapar, ‘Vijayant at Kargil: The Biography of a War Hero’.
Excerpt from ‘Vijayant at Kargil: The Biography of a War Hero’: “By the time Virender reached home, his devastated wife could hardly move. She broke down in his arms. Silent tears streamed down her face. They held each other; their perfect family had been broken”
It’s been more than 22 years since Vijayant left, but Col Thapar visits Knoll every year on the day of Vijayant’s martyrdom to relive his son’s memory. His purpose for this visit is also because of a small girl named Ruksana, who is mentioned in Capt. Thapar’s last letter.
Ruksana is a young Kashmiri girl. She is the daughter of a poor wood-cuter, who was shot dead by the terrorist, right in front of her eye. After that day, the girl, Ruksana never uttered a word and became mum.
At the time when the captain met her, she was just 2 years old. He used to get clothes and chocolates for her, every time he met her. Soon, the distance between them increased because of Captain’s postings but Ruksana would wait for him.
When the captain returned, he asked her what’s your name, and then she said, ‘Ruksana’. That was the first time she said something after her father’s demise. Captain further asked her, “Do you want to go to school”. She agreed.
In the letter, Captain Thapar requested his family to keep sending Rs. 50 to Ruksana, that’s how novel he was. Col. Thappar visits Kupwara every year to ensure that Ruksana is well and she is given all the financial assistance that she requires.