Niali (Cuttack)/Bhubaneswar: Little did she know that this was her husband’s last phone call to her and she will never be able to hear his voice thereafter.
“I’m going to Srinagar. I will call you once, I reach there. Don’t’ worry,” were the last words of Manoj Kumar Behera, who along with Prasanna Sahoo from the state were martyred in Pulwama terror attack Thursday.
While Sahoo belonged to Naugan village in Jagatsinghpur district, Manoj Behera hailed from Ratanpur village of Niali block in Cuttack district.
His parting words are still haunting his widowed wife, Ililata Behera of Ratanpur village under Niali area in Cuttack district. She is proud of her husband’s supreme sacrifice for the nation’s security.
Ililata is yet to accept the harsh reality that her husband has attained martyrdom. Manoj, who had joined CRPF in 2006, had spoken to Itilata over phone Thursday morning. Hours after, Itilata could not believe her ears when she heard that her husband was among the 45 CRPF Jawans, who have been killed in the worst terror attack at Pulwama, 30 km from Srinagar. Ililata, who married Manoj January 20, 2017 and has a one-year-old daughter,
was in tears while recalling his last conversation with her beloved husband. “I will be leaving for Srinagar today for which I woke up at 3 AM. But will start a bit late since the road is not clear. I will call you again once I reach there,” recalls Itilata sharing the last few lines of the telephonic conversation.
Manoj’s mother Sabitri Behera, whom he called last at around 1 PM Thursday, said he had come on a vacation December 24 last year. “He was very happy. We celebrated his daughter’s birthday January 16. Then he went back February 6,” said teary-eyed Sabitri.
Similarly, a pall of gloom descended on the family of martyred Jawan of Shikhar village under Nuagaon police limits of Jagatsinghpur district.
Parshana, who was posted as a Constable at 61 Battalions of CRPF, had last come to his house in November last year, said his inconsolable wife, who is yet to come out of the shock.
His daughter Sony, who is deeply broken after the tragedy, said, “My father laid down his life for the nation. I and my family are proud of him. He had always had this dream to do something for the country. But as a daughter, I lost my father which is irreparable.”
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik Friday spoke to the families of the two CRPF jawans from the state, who were among 45 personnel killed in a terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir, officials said. “The Chief Minister spoke to the family members of Saheed Prasanna Sahu and Saheed Manoj Behera over telephone and conveyed his deep sympathy,” a statement issued by the Chief Minister’s Office said. “Deeply saddened by the martyrdom of so many @crpfindia #jawans in terrorist attack in #Pulwama district of #JammuAndKashmir. Strongly condemn the cowardly act and condolences to the bereaved families (sic),” Patnaik tweeted.
Rs 10L ex-gratia for martyrs’ kin
Bhubaneswar: The state government Friday announced an ex-gratia of `10 lakh each for the families of two slain CRPF jawans from the state, who were among 45 personnel killed in a terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir, officials said. The ex-gratia was announced after Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik spoke to the family members of the two jawans. “I spoke to the family members of the two martyrs and assured them of all help. I am with them,” Patnaik said.