Major Aditya Kumar (L) and his father Lt Col Karamveer Singh leave after appearing at the Supreme Court in connection with the Shopian firing case

NEW DELHI: Major Aditya Kumar and Rifleman Aurangzeb (posthumously) of the Indian Army will be conferred the Shaurya Chakra, a gallantry award given during “no war and no peace” scenarios, on the occasion of Independence Day.

Major Aditya of the army’s 10 Garhwal Rifles had come into the limelight when his unit had fired at a stone-pelting mob in Shopian on January 27 that left three people dead. Following the incident, the Jammu and Kashmir Police registered a case under sections 302 (murder) and 307 (attempt to murder) of the Ranbir Penal Code against the personnel of the army unit, including Aditya.

In February, Major Aditya’s father, Lt Col Karamveer Singh, moved the Supreme Court for quashing the FIR. The writ petition filed by Lt Col Karamveer reads that the local police had filed a FIR against his son, who was performing his “bonafide duties”. The petition added that an unruly mob were pelting stones at army vehicles part of a convoy and placed the lives of the personnel under peril. When the situation had gone beyond control, a warning was issued to the mob to disperse. But the mob intensified their stone pelting and got hold of a Junior Commissioned Officer (JCO) and were going to lynch him. Warning shots were fired, but the mob refused to spare the JCO’s life. The army personnel then opened fire on the mob.

The petition had added that lodging a FIR only against Major Aditya and not the mob “exposes the extremely sinister design, by which the entire effort is to somehow attack and breakdown the morale of the forces,” adds the petition.

On February 12, the Supreme Court restrained the Jammu and Kashmir Police from taking any “coercive steps” against army officers, including Major Aditya. In March, however, during a hearing on Lt Col Karamveer’s petition, the J&K government told the court that Major Aditya has not been named as an accused. But in July the J&K government told the apex court that a probe into the Shopian case was justified.

On the other hand, Rifleman Aurangzeb who belonged to the Jammu and Kashmir Light Infantry, was abducted and later killed by terrorists in J&K’s Pulwama district on June 14. He was heading to his home to celebrate Eid when the incident took place. The 24-year-old soldier belonged to Salani village in Poonch and had joined the Army in 2012.