Video Producer: Zijah Sherwani
Video Editor: Ashutosh Bhardwaj
Stringer: Nirajanand Sahai
Sepoy Gurbinder Singh, who turned 22 on 2 June 2020, was a native of Tolawal village of Sangrur district in Punjab. He joined the army in 2018 and was recruited to the 3 Punjab regiment. The youngest son in the family, Gurbinder got engaged when he visited home 10 months back in August and was set to get married in November.
Gurbinder was passionate about the Indian Army and his duty towards the nation. According to his mother, Charanjeet Kaur, he spoke about the 'fauj' all day. He last spoke to his family at the end of May and informed them about going to the lower part of the Valley, where he wouldn't have internet connectivity.
Always Dreamt About Joining the Army
Gubinder’s brother, Gurpreet Singh, recalls how he used to keep talking about joining the army as his primary goal in life, inspired by his uncle. He was determined to pursue this dream since he was a child.
His mother fondly remembers their conversations. He used to say, “Mom, do army men ever fall? I can manage to jump from a hill.” He was very proud of serving the army and kept talking about it. He used to ask me, “Mom what are you worried about? Your son is an army man now.”
He always kept her informed about whatever he got from the army and she was happy for him. He used to check up on her, asking her if she had eaten and she always asked him if he had. This was the nature of their conversation.
Family Wished to See His Wedding
His niece, Jasmeen Kaur, was devastated on hearing about her uncle’s early demise. She says “I had so much to talk to him about, but now those words just remain in my heart. We were going to get him married this year. We kept discussing the arrangements, the new clothes we would buy. I never discussed any of these plans with him, including the attire I would wear for his wedding.”
"“It was our biggest wish to see his wedding. We thought we would tease him and enjoy the festivities, but we could never imagine how things would play out. I am overwhelmed with grief as it feels impossible to cope with this huge loss we face.”" - Jasmeen Kaur, Gurbinder Singh’s niece
His mother shares her previous conversations with her late son, highlighting how they were all planning his wedding. I asked him, “What all do you want us to do for the wedding? To which, he replied saying, ‘Don’t worry, we will do everything when I come back home’.”
His sister-in-law, Veerpal Kaur, misses his tight hugs the most. “He hadn’t been home for 10 months and we kept asking him when he will come home on leave. We were awaiting his return. I had so many dreams of seeing his wedding but God had other plans for him. Whenever we met, he greeted me with a tight hug. I had told him that I was very eager to meet him. This is the one thing that upsets me over and over again!”
Proud and Devoted to Serve the Nation
According to his brother, he was always keen to join the army. He spoke about nationalism and loyalty to his country all day.
His niece shares how he motivated her to study so that she can become an officer in the army. “I used to tell him that I don’t want to join the army but I want to become an NRI. I have regrets... if I had agreed with him at that point in time, it would’ve made him happy. At this point of time, my outlook has changed towards joining the armed forces.”
She also states how he made his job look effortless and never complained. “He never told us about the difficulties he faced in the army. He always praised his job and spoke about how respectable the profession is. He wanted to encourage us to join the forces, so never spoke about the hardships he faced himself.”
Sister-in-law Misses Cooking for Her Veerji
“Once he got a big tin of Ghee, along with ingredients for Panjeeri, and I told him he had gotten too much. He replied saying, ‘We will all eat it and of course I’m there to finish it.’ He enjoyed the simple pleasures of life.”
"“He was very fond of eating Kheer, Kada Prashad and Panjeeri. When he came home, on leave, he always asked me to make his favorite things.”" - Veerpal Kaur, Gurbinder Singh’s sister-in-law
. Read more on Videos by The Quint.‘Mom, Army Men Never Fall’: Galwan Martyr Gurbinder Singh’s WordsMan Dons PPE Suit, Takes Migrant Worker To Hospital Amid COVID . Read more on Videos by The Quint.