Mumbai

Thousands bid tearful adieu to Major Kaustubh Rane

Kanika Rane, wife of martyr Major Kaustubh Rane, holding their two-year-old son Agastya at his funeral in Mira Road, Mumbai, on Thursday. Major Rane, who died fighting terrorists in J&K, was laid to rest with full State honours in the presence of thousands of people.

Kanika Rane, wife of martyr Major Kaustubh Rane, holding their two-year-old son Agastya at his funeral in Mira Road, Mumbai, on Thursday. Major Rane, who died fighting terrorists in J&K, was laid to rest with full State honours in the presence of thousands of people.

Over 20,000 people gathered in Mira Road on Thursday to pay their last respects to Major Kaustubh Rane, who was killed during a gun battle with militants in Gurez sector of Bandipora district in Jammu and Kashmir on August 4. At least two militants were gunned down in the operation.

All roads leading to Major Rane’s house in Sheetal Nagar were lined with banners in honour of him. Scores of mourners thronged the house between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. to catch a last glimpse of Major Rane. The body was kept in a wooden casket draped with the Tricolour and carried in an Army truck bedecked with flowers. The funeral procession from the residence to Vaikunthdham civic crematorium began at 9.30 a.m. A sea of people joined the procession waving the Tricolour, showering flowers on the truck and shouting ‘ Vande Mataram ’, ‘ Bharat Mata Ki Jai ’ and ‘Major Kaustubh Rane Amar Rahe ’.

Mumbai, 09/08/2018: Hundreds of people attend the funeral procession of  martyr Major Kaustubh Rane at Mira road, ariund 45kms from Mumbai. Major Kaustubh Rane died while retaliating terrorists attack in Kashmir, laid to rest in full state honour.  Photo: Vijay Bate.

Mumbai, 09/08/2018: Hundreds of people attend the funeral procession of martyr Major Kaustubh Rane at Mira road, ariund 45kms from Mumbai. Major Kaustubh Rane died while retaliating terrorists attack in Kashmir, laid to rest in full state honour. Photo: Vijay Bate.

Large turnout

When the procession reached the crematorium two hours later, people climbed trees, congregated on the terraces of neighbouring buildings and stood on the compound wall of the crematorium to witness the funeral. Large screens were installed all around the crematorium for people, who could not enter the compound, to follow the proceedings.

Major Rane’s family members placed wreaths on the body while trying to hold back their tears and appealed to the people to maintain peace. The slain soldier’s wife Kanika was seen crying inconsolably and carrying their two-and-a-half-year-old son Agastya in her arms.

Major Rane’s father Prakash, who earlier had to be examined by doctors after he complained of uneasiness at the house, lit the funeral pyre at the crematorium. The last rites were performed and Major Rane was cremated with full military honours at 12.30 p.m.

Mumbai, 09/08/2018: Kanika Rane, wife of  martyr Major Kaustubh Rane hold tricolor after the funeral at Mira road. Major Kaustubh Rane died while retaliating terrorists in Kashmir, laid to rest in full state honour at Mira road. Hundreds of people attend the funeral procession. Photo: Vijay Bate.

Mumbai, 09/08/2018: Kanika Rane, wife of martyr Major Kaustubh Rane hold tricolor after the funeral at Mira road. Major Kaustubh Rane died while retaliating terrorists in Kashmir, laid to rest in full state honour at Mira road. Hundreds of people attend the funeral procession. Photo: Vijay Bate.

Apart from local politicians, Army officers, including Lieutenant General Cherish Mathson, general officer commanding-in-chief (GOC-in-C) of South Western Command, Naval Bajaj, Inspector General, Konkan Range, Thane Rural police, and personnel from the three Armed Forces were present at the funeral.

Major Rane’s family, originally hailing from Vaibhavwadi in Sindhudurg district, have been residing at the house in Mira Road for the past 30 years. Despite being posted in Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh the 29-year-old kept in touch with his friends and neighbours.

‘A jovial person’

During his visit on holidays, he would play cricket with children, said a neighbour. “Major Rane was jovial and respected the elders,” recalled another neighbour.

The Doctors’ Association of Mira Road and Bhayander raised over ₹2.5 lakh and handed it over to Major Rane’s family.

(With PTI inputs)


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Printable version | Aug 1, 2022 11:20:42 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/thousands-bid-tearful-adieu-to-major-kaustubh-rane/article24647669.ece