Service No : IC-83609N
Date of Birth : 1994
Place of birth : Mangalore Dist (Kar)
Service : Army
Last Rank : Captain
Arm/Regt : The Corps of Signals
Operation : CI & IS Ops
Awards : Shaurya Chakra
Martyrdom : November 22, 2023
Captain MV Pranjal hailed from Bangalore but grew up in Mangaluru in Karnataka and was born in the year 1994. The only son of Shri M Venkatesh (retired Managing Director of Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Limited) and Smt Anuradha, he always nursed the idea of serving in the Armed Forces while growing up. He was a bright student and excelled in his studies. He did his schooling at Delhi Public School MRPL, Suratkal, and PU from Mahesh PU College, Mangaluru, before moving to the Military College of Telecommunication Engineering at MHOW. After his Class XII, he got a seat at Bengaluru’s RV College of Engineering to pursue chemical engineering but he decided to pursue a career in the Army. He got selected to join the Army through TES-30 (Technical Entry Scheme), after having secured 2nd 'All India rank' in the competitive examination. In the year 2014, he passed out of Officers' Training Academy (OTA) Gaya, located amid an estate of approximately 870 acres in the hilly terrain of Paharpur at Gaya (Located en route from Gaya to Bodhgaya, about 7 km from Gaya railway station). He was commissioned into the Corps of Signals, an important arm that provides communication to the Indian army during war and peace.
Capt MV Pranjal was a passionate photographer, an avid traveler, and a committed Scout Ranger. Whenever he visited Mangaluru during his leave, he made sure to take a class on the Flag Code of India for Bachelor of Education (B Ed) graduates. He was quite knowledgeable about the manufacturing, history, and protocols that needed to be followed. Capt Pranjal had completed his Rashtrapati Scout in 2009 and thereafter he would take classes for budding scouts whenever he visited Mangaluru. In fact, when he outgrew his scout uniform, he purchased a new one with all the accessories and would wear it to classes. After serving for a few years he got married to Ms Aditi in Aug 2021.
Later Capt MV Pranjal was deputed to serve with 63 Rashtriya Rifles battalion deployed in the Kashmir valley for counter-insurgency operations. By the year 2023, he had put in around 09 years of service and had served in various challenging operational areas. He was set to get promoted to the rank of Major in December 2023, but destiny had something else in store for him.
Rajouri Encounter (J&K) : 22 Nov 2023
During Nov 2023, Capt MV Pranjal’s unit 63 RR was deployed in the Rajouri sector of the Kashmir valley, as part of the 'Romeo' force functioning under the operational control of XVI Corps of the Indian Army. As the area of responsibility (AOR) of the unit fell in the region infested with militants, the unit had to undertake counter-insurgency operations regularly. Based on the information from the intelligent sources, the unit decided to launch a search and cordon operation along with 9 Para(SF) and J&K Police on 22 Nov 2023. Accordingly, a joint operation was launched on the intervening night of 21/22 Nov 2023 along with elements of 63 RR, 9 Para(SF), and J & K Police. As planned the joint team reached the suspected Kalakote area of Gulabgarh forest in Rajouri district and launched the cordon and search operation.
As the search operation was underway, the terrorists sensing the danger fired at the troops in a bid to escape. A fierce gun battle ensued thereafter with a heavy exchange of fire from both sides. The terrorists including their leader were holed up in a dhok (Temporary thatched roof mud house) and were targeting the troops from there. Capt MV Pranjal, sensing the lurking danger and in a bid to save the lives of civilians, particularly women and children, came out of his cover to pin down the terrorists. However, while doing so, Capt MV Pranjal got caught in the volley of fire, sustaining bullet injuries. He soon succumbed to his injuries and was martyred. The operation continued and eventually, all the terrorists were neutralized. However, besides Capt MV Pranjal, four other brave hearts from 9 Para(SF) also lost their lives during the operation. The other martyred soldiers included Capt Shubham Gupta, Havildar Abdul Majid, Lance Naik Sanjay Bisht, and Paratrooper Sachin Laur. Capt MV Pranja was a valiant soldier and a fine officer who displayed courage of a very high order during the operation and laid down his life at the age of 29 years in the service of the nation. Capt MV Pranjal was given the gallantry award, “Shaurya Chakra” posthumously on 26th Jan 2024, for his commendable bravery, devotion to duty,
Capt MV Pranjal is survived by his father Shri M Venkatesh, mother Smt Anuradha, and wife Smt Aditi G.