Second Lieutenant Arun Khetrapal was an Indian Army officer who is remembered for his extraordinary bravery and sacrifice during the India–Pakistan War of 1971. He was born on 14 October 1950 in Pune, Maharashtra.
Arun Khetrapal was part of the 17 Poona Horse Regiment during the war. On December 16, 1971, during the Battle of Basantar in the western sector of the war, he was commanding a Centurion tank. His force was ordered to capture a strategic area, and despite heavy enemy fire, he led his tanks into battle. During the battle, his tank was attacked several times, but he continued to engage the enemy forces.
Ultimately his tank took a direct hit and Arun Khetrapal was seriously injured. Despite his injuries and his tank on fire, he refused to abandon his position and continued fighting until his last breath. His actions played a vital role in successfully achieving the objective. For his extraordinary bravery, Second Lieutenant Arun Khetrapal was posthumously awarded the Param Vir Chakra, India’s highest military decoration for gallantry.
Arun Khetarpal’s courage and selflessness remains an inspiring example of bravery and sacrifice for the armed forces and the nation. His sacrifice is remembered and honored in India, and his story is often told to inspire younger generations.
Paramveer Chakra: 21 Paramveers who became immortal in the pages of history
|Somnath Sharma||Major||3 Nov 1947|
|Jadunath Singh||Naik||6 Feb 1948|
|Rama Raghoba Rane||Second Lieutenant||8 Apr 1948|
|Piru Singh||Company Havildar Major||17 Jul 1948|
|Karam Singh||Lance Naik||13 Oct 1948|
|Gurbachan Singh Salaria||Captain||5 Dec 1961|
|Dhan Singh Thapa||Major||20 Oct 1962|
|Joginder Singh||Subedar||23 Oct 1962|
|Shaitan Singh||Major||18 Nov 1962|
|Abdul Hamid||Company Quarter Master Havildar||10 Sep 1965|
|Ardeshir Tarapore||Lieutenant Colonel||11 Sep 1965|
|Albert Ekka||Lance Naik||3 Dec 1971|
|Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon||Flying Officer||14 Dec 1971|
|Arun Khetarpal||Second Lieutenant||16 Dec 1971|
|Hoshiar Singh Dahiya||Major||17 Dec 1971|
|Bana Singh||Naib Subedar||23 May 1987|
|Ramaswamy Parameshwaran||Major||25 Nov 1987|
|Manoj Kumar Pandey||Lieutenant||3 Jul 1999|
|Yogendra Singh Yadav||Grenadier||4 Jul 1999|
|Sanjay Kumar||Rifleman||5 Jul 1999|
|Vikram Batra||Captain||7 Jul 1999|
Tribute to 21 immortal martyrs from a grateful nation!