The last rites of an Army soldier who died in Manipur after being hit by a bullet was carried out in his ancestral Mavta village in Madhya Pradesh’s Ratlam district on Friday amid protests by his kin that he be accorded the status of ‘martyr’. Lokesh Kumavat (22) had died on duty in Imphal in Manipur on Thursday, an official said.
As it is unclear how he was killed and since the matter was under investigation by the Army and the Imphal police, he has not yet been accorded ‘martyr’ status, due to which the cremation took place without military honours, said Jaoro Sub Divisional Magistrate Himanshu Prajapati said. His family members refused to take the mortal remains on the final journey over the martyr status demand and had to be convinced by local officials to call of their protest.
Meanwhile, a release from the Madhya Pradesh government, in which Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan condoled the death, stated that “Kumawat was posted in the Army’s Imphal unit and got martyred in firing with terrorists”.