Nearly seven months after 35-year-old Garhwal Rifles Havildar Rajendra Singh went missing in an avalanche while patrolling at the Line of Control (LoC) in Gulmarg, his family was informed about the recovery of his body on Saturday.
In May, the Army declared him a ‘battle-casualty’, Rajendra’s family members told Indian Express. Earlier this month, Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat sent a condolence message to his wife, but she had refused to accept that since Rajendra’s body had not been recovered.
“Rajendra last came to Dehradun in October 2019 for Diwali after which he resumed duty, he was posted in Gulmarg at the LoC. On January 9 this year, we received information from the Army that he had gone missing after an avalanche,” Dinesh Negi, a retired Army Man and Rajendra’s cousin told IE.
After two days, when the Army could not find Dinesh, I had lost hope, Negi added. “During my service, I had been posted in Siachen and I am aware that no one can survive under such snow cover for more than two days. I told this to his family. But his wife Rajeshwari refused to accept his death as the body had not been found. We sent communications to Defence ministry officials with a request to intensify the search,” Dinesh told the media.
State’s CM Rawat also urged Defence Minister Rajnath Singh to intensify the efforts to find Rajendra. On Saturday, Rajendra’s wife received a call from a Subedar Major-rank officer who said her husband’s body had been found near the same place from where he went missing.
Rajendra is survived by his wife Rajeshwari, two daughters and a son. The eldest among four siblings, Rajendra joined the Garhwal Rifles regiment in 2001.