Agniveer Akshay Lakshman ‘Martyr’ at Siachen Glacier | India’s First Agniveer who sacrificed his life

Agniveer Akshay Lakshman Death : Agniveer Gavate Akshay Laxman, deployed at the Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battlefield, has become the first Agniveer to be martyred in the line of duty since the launch of the Agneepath scheme for recruitment of soldiers. You know that just a few days ago, Agniveer Amritpal had died, which was declared suicide by the Army and because of this he was not given the status of martyr, but for all of us he is also a martyr.

The 14th Corps of the Indian Army i.e. Fire & Fury Corps posted the news of his martyrdom on its Twitter handle. He wrote on his Twitter handle “Quartered in snow to remain silent, when the bugle calls they shall rise and march again ” All ranks of Fire and Fury Corps salute the supreme sacrifice of #Agniveer (Operator) Gawate Akshay Laxman, in the line of duty, in the unforgiving heights of #Siachen, and offer deepest condolences to the family.

Because he was a martyr, he was given a military funeral.

Agniveer Gawate Akshay Lakshman – Family and Lifestyle

Gavate Akshay Lakshman was 22 years old. Akshay’s father, a resident of Pimpalgaon Sarai in Buldhana district, is a laborer and Akshay was the only earning member of his family. Akshay has a younger sister whose name is Shweta and she is currently studying in 12th standard. On December 30, 2022, Akshay completed his training and joined the Regiment of Artillery of the Indian Army. After joining duty, Akshay went home in the month of August 2023.

Only 3 days ago, Akshay had talked to his mother through telephone.

Joining of Indian Army

Akshay’s Uncle Sahebrao Gavate is a retired soldier and he says, “Akshay was a hard working and honest child, his dream was to join the Indian Army and he worked hard day and night to qualify the Army Rally.

Reason behind Akshay’s Death

The cause of Akshay’s death is not known yet. As per Army report, his posting was at Forward Base and he felt restlessness while sleeping. He complained about it, after which he was taken to the nearest hospital. There the doctor gave him CPR for 45 minutes but he could not be saved. After his death he was given a military funeral.

Financial Assistance Given to Akshay’s Family :

When the news of the death spread on social media, politics started getting involved, after which the Indian Army also tweeted from its Twitter handle. The Army wrote, “In view of the conflicting messages on social media regarding financial assistance to the next of kin of the deceased, it is important to clarify that the emoluments payable to the next of kin are governed by the relevant terms and conditions of service of the soldier.”

As per the terms of appointment of Agniveers, the emoluments authorized for the deceased will include:-

  • Non-Contributory Insurance sum of 48 Lakhs
  • Agniveer’s contribution (30%) to the Service Fund, with matching contribution by the Government and interest thereon.
  • Ex-gratia amount of ₹ 44 lakh.
  • Payment of remaining tenure till completion of four years from the date of death (in case the amount is more than ₹13 lakh).
  • Contribution of ₹8 lakh from Armed Forces Battle Casualty Fund.
  • Immediate financial assistance of ₹ 30 thousand from AWWA.

Some Important Points to think upon :-

What is the apparent cause of death?

According to the army report, he felt restless while sleeping, the doctor gave him CPR for 45 minutes but he could not be saved. Most Expected, this is a case of Cardiac Arrest. Why did the Indian Army not give a clear cause of death?

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Why are Agniveers being posted in so many death prone areas?

You know that Agniveer Amritpal also died while posting on LOC and now this matter is of Siachen. The question is, why are Agniveers being posted at such a remote place? We all know that now the training given to Agniveers is in 6 months, the same training was earlier given in the duration of 1 year. Due to short training duration, they are getting less work exposure and in such a situation, posting at a place like Siachen is not only physically tough for them but also mentally very disturbing.

Then why is he being given posting at such a place? Was Akshay given training to live in such areas in the High Altitude Training Warfare school or was he directly sent on posting? the question is big !!!

In another observation, former Navy Chief Admiral Arun Prakash said, “This young Agniveer must have just completed his basic training of about six months. Was it a good idea to deploy him to Siachen where the environment makes such tough demands physically and mentally even on experienced soldiers?”

Why no pension in these cases?

The irony is that the family of a trainee civil servant, even if he dies in an accident due to being drunk during leave or commits suicide, would be entitled to family pension, but the family of this Agniveer in Siachen will not get the pension.

This raises questions on the Agniveer policies of the Indian Army. You cannot compensate the death of a soldier with a few rupees. My advice would be, improve your policies. It should not happen that the youth, who are always ready to join the Indian Army, turn their backs on it.

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