Who Was Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan? Remembering The 26/11 Hero On His Birth Anniversary

Who Was Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan? Remembering The 26/11 Hero On His Birth Anniversary

Among the many heroes who laid their lives to protect hostages from the terrorists, Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was too at the fore front

Ruddhi PhadkeUpdated: Friday, March 15, 2024, 04:46 PM IST
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L Unnikrishnan with his son Major Sandeep’s pic in the backdrop | X

November 26, 2008, a day that's etched in the memory of ever person in every corner of the world. Feeling of being held hostage, Fear for seeing loved ones being killed in front of sight and the fear of losing life in next few minutes is not new to many Indians. India has seen several incidents in which terrorism has cast a scar on their minds. November 26, 2008 was the day when India faced one of the biggest threats when Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists launched an attack on Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Oberoi Trident, Taj Hotel and Nariman House claiming 166 lives including security personnel.

Among the many heroes who laid their lives to protect hostages from the terrorists, Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was too at the fore front. Remembering him on his birth anniversary, here's look at his life journey in a bid to know more about the Braveheart. Major Sandeep was honoured with Ashok Chakra posthumously.

Personal life

Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was born in Kerala's Kozhikode on March 15, 1977. He was the only son of retired ISRO officer K. Unnikrishnan and Dhanalakshmi Unnikrishnan. His schooling was done in The Frank Anthony Public School, Bangalore. He completed his graduation in 1995 in the ISC Science stream. His was always enthusiastic about joining the armed forces right since his childhood. He was married to a girl named Neha.

Army life

1995- Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan, AC(P) joined the National Defence Academy (India) (NDA), Pune, Maharashtra in 1995. He was a part of the Oscar Squadron (No. 4 Battalion) and a graduate of the 94th Course NDA. He also held a Bachelor of Arts degree.

1999- He graduated from IMA and got commissioned as Lieutenant in the 7th Battalion of the Bihar Regiment (Infantry) of Indian Army. He held an important role in Operation Vijay in 1999

2005- He was promoted to the rank of Major. He was appreciated for his performance during the 'Ghatak course' (at the Infantry wing Commando School, Belgaum).

2007- After his active and successful role in different locations including Siachen, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat (during 2002 Gujarat Riots), Hyderabad and Rajasthan, he was selected to join the National Security Guards. He joined 51 SAG NSG on January 20, 2007.

His role in 26/11 attacks

During the 26/11 attacks, he led his team to rescue hostages trapped in Mumbai's Taj Hotel, where 80 hostages were killed and 240 were injured. Around 8.30pm on the fateful night of 26th July 2008, Major Sandeep's squad left no stone unturned in rescuing the hostages. After they heard cries of help from the hostages, the team members not strategically but fearlessly positioned themselves right in front of the door beyond which the hostages were trapped.

After indiscriminate firing started, Mar Unnikrishnan not only rescued his injured team member but after that proceeded fearlessly to confront the terrorists in a bid to free the hostages. While MAjor Unnikrinshnan lost his life after being shot in the right arm, other team members could manage to eliminate terrorists in the room.

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