Wife of Major killed in Pulwama encounter set to join Army

Pulwama encounter, wife of army officer set to join army, Major Dhoundiyal, Indian army major dead, army personnel killed in pulwama encounter, jammu and kashmir, indian express

Nitika Dhoundiyal, wife of Major V S Dhoundiyal, along with other family members in Dehradun on Monday. (Express Photo by Virender Singh Negi)

Wife of Major Vibhuti Shankar Dhoundiyal, who was killed in an encounter in Kashmir's Pulwama district on Monday, is set to join the Indian Army as an officer.

Nitika Dhoundiyal has already cleared the Service Selection Board (SSB) examination — a test to recruit candidates into the Armed forces as officers. She has also made it through the medical examination and is waiting for the merit waiting list. "I am hopeful that I will get through it too and will join the Army thereafter," she said in a video shared by a journalist on Twitter. As a tribute to her husband, 28-year-old Nitika will wear the stars from her husband's uniform on her first day of service.

Major Dhoundiyal (34), along with three other Army personnel, was killed in the encounter in Pulwama district of South Kashmir on Monday morning. His body was brought to his residence in Dehradun’s Nashville Road area on Monday night. A policeman, a civilian and three Jaish-e-Mohammad militants — including its “operations chief” whose role in the attack on the CRPF convoy last week is being investigated — were killed in the operation.

Read | Pulwama encounter: Dehradun remembers Major Dhoundiyal; Simple, no arrogance, very respectful

Standing in front of his coffin on a rainy Monday night, a teary-eyed Nitika had said, "You lied to me that you loved me. In fact, you loved the nation way more. I’m quite jealous and I can’t help it.” She said she was honoured to have him as her husband. "Till my last breath I’ll always love you, Vibhu. It’s hurting that you are leaving but I know you’ll always be around… I request everyone not to sympathise, rather be very strong. Let’s salute this man,” she said as she paid last respects to her husband.

The body was taken to Haridwar where the last rites were performed with full military honours. BJP MLAs Madan Kaushik, Ganesh Joshi, Khajan Dass, Arvind Pandey, Congress MLA Manoj Rawat, and Congress leader and former Uttarakhand chief minister Harish Rawat were among those who paid their last respects to the Major. All party leaders condemned Dhoundiyal’s killing.