New Delhi: India’s first Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat’s funeral will take place today (Decemeber 10, 2021) in the national capital. General Rawat, his wife Madhulika and 11 other defence personnel died after the Mi-17 chopper they were on board crashed near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on December 8.
From 11 am, the bodies of General Rawat and his wife will be kept at their Delhi home for family, friends, and the public to pay their final respects. The general public can pay tribute to the Rawats at their Kamaraj Marg residence from 11 am to 12:30 pm, while the military personnel can pay respects between 12:30 pm-1.30 pm. According to media reports, the funeral procession is likely begin at 2 pm while at 4 pm, the actual funeral has been scheduled, at the Brar Square Crematorium.
From the chopper crash, bodies of only CDS General Bipin Rawat, his wife Madhulika Rawat, Brigadier LS Lidder and Lance Naik Vivek Kumar have been identified so far. Brigadier Lidder’s funeral has been scheduled at Brar Square Crematorium at 9 am today. The bodies of others will be kept at the Army Base Hospital till identified. The Army said that the appropriate military funerals of all deceased are being planned and coordinated in close consultation with close family members. The mortal remains will be released to the next of kin for final religious rites as desired by respective families.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh had on Thursday (Decemeber 9) said, “The last rites of CDS General Bipin Rawat will be performed with full military honours. The last rites of other military personnel will be performed with appropriate military honour.”
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday paid his last respect to CDS Bipin Rawat and others who lost their lives in the chopper crash. The Prime Minister visited Palam airbase to pay his last respect.
Apart from General Rawat and his wife, his Defence Adviser Brigadier Lakhbinder Singh Lidder and Staff Officer Lieutenant Colonel Harjinder Singh also died in the crash. Other nine defence forces personnel who died in the chopper crash are Wing Commander Prithvi Singh Chauhan, Squadron Leader Kuldeep Singh, Junior Warrant Officer Rana Pratap Das, Junior Warrant Officer Arakkal Pradeep, Havildar Satpal Rai, Naik Gursewak Singh, Naik Jitendra Kumar, Lance Naik Vivek Kumar and Lance Naik B Sai Teja.
Group Captain Varun Singh, who is the lone survivor from the crash, has been shifted to Air Force Command hospital at Bengaluru for further treatment.
The mortal remains of General Rawat will be taken in a gun carriage for the funeral in Delhi Cantt Brar Square. The Defence Minister, Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt, three service chiefs and other senior military officials will be among those present at the cremation of General Rawat. Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and Uttarakhand Chief Minister Pushkar Singh Dhami are also likely to be present. Tamil Nadu Chief Minister MK Stalin, Governor of Telangana and Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry Dr Tamilisai Soundararajan visited Madras Regimental Centre in Wellington on Thursday and paid floral tributes to General Rawat and others who had died in the chopper crash.
(With inputs from ANI)