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The 25th anniversary of the Kargil War rekindles memories of bravery and sacrifice. Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja, a fighter pilot who fell defending the Indian borders, remains a symbol of courage. This article features a poignant account from his former commander, highlighting the enduring impact of Ahuja’s loss.

Wing Commander (Retd.) Sanjay Manchanda, who commanded Squadron Leader Ahuja during the Kargil War, expresses his deep regret over Ahuja’s death. He reveals a desire to have called Ahuja back from the mission, a decision that continues to weigh heavily on him even after a quarter-century.

Manchanda recounts Squadron Leader Ahuja’s selflessness. Ahuja, despite facing a technical issue with his own aircraft, remained airborne to guide the rescue efforts for another pilot whose plane had malfunctioned. This act of putting another’s life before his own exemplifies the spirit of sacrifice that defined the Kargil conflict.

Squadron Leader Ahuja’s actions serve as a powerful testament to the unwavering dedication of India’s armed forces. His willingness to face danger and prioritize the safety of his colleagues continues to inspire generations of airmen.

The Kargil War, though brief, was a brutal conflict. As India commemorates the 25th anniversary, Squadron Leader Ahuja’s story stands as a reminder of the immense price paid by its soldiers to safeguard the nation’s territorial integrity.

Squadron Leader Ahuja’s sacrifice serves as a powerful call to action. His bravery and the sacrifices of countless others urge us to strive for peace while honoring the memory of those who ensured our safety.