New Delhi: Nikita Kaul, wife of Major VS Dhoundiyal, who lost his life in Pulwama encounter yesterday, bid him a last goodbye on Tuesday by saluting him and chanting ‘Jai Hind’ thrice. “I’m really proud. We all love you. The way you love everyone is entirely different because you sacrifice your life for the people who you may have never contacted, but still you decided to give your life for them,” the martyr’s wife said, while standing beside his coffin.

She added,”You are such a brave man. I am very honoured to have you as my husband. I’ll love you till my last breath. I owe my life to you. Yes it’s hurting that you’re leaving but I know you will always be around.”  27-year-old bereaved Nitika also urged everyone to not sympathise. “Rather be very strong because this man holds a position larger than any of us standing here. Let’s salute this man. Jai Hind, Jai Hind, Jai Hind,” she said.

They were married less than a year ago. Reports claimed that Major Dhoundiyal had planned to come home in April to celebrate his first anniversary with Nikita.

Meanwhile, thousands of people, including army personnel gathered at Major Vibhuti Shankar Dhoundiyal’s residence in Dehradun to pay their last respects. Major Dhoundiyal, who belonged to the 55 Rashtriya Rifles, is also survived by his three elder sisters, mother and grandmother.

About Pulwama encounter

Seven people, including an Indian Army major and three Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) militants, were killed in a gunfight in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama district, barely 10 km away from the spot of the deadly February 14 suicide attack on the CRPF convoy.

The fierce gunbattle started late on Sunday after security forces, including the Rashtriya Rifles (RR), Special Operations Group (SOG) of the state police and the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF), surrounded the village following a tip off that JeM militants were hiding in Pinglena village.

The encounter came less than a week after 40 CRPF personnel lost their lives in deadly attack carried out by a JeM suicide bomber Adil Dar on the Jammu-Srinagar highway in Pulwama.