Meet Lt. Swati Mahadik, who joins army two years after losing her husband in Kashmir

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Lt. Swati Mahadik on Saturday broke down as she completed her parade marking her entry into the Indian army as a commissioned officer. Her family members and a senior army officer’s wife consoled, hugged her and wiped the tears of joy as she set out to complete the unfinished dreams of her martyred husband.

Swati Mahadik

Her husband, the late Col. Santosh Mahadik had died in an anti-terror operation in Kupwara in north Kashmir in November 2015.

On Saturday, the 38-year-old newly commissioned Lieutenant of Indian army had two children — daughter Kartikee, 12, and 7-year-old son Swaraj- to witness her proud moment. She was also joined by her grieving mother-in-law Kalindi Ghorpade, father Babanrao Shedge and her mother.

This was truly an inspiring example of grit and courage.

Her late husband was an officer from the Army’s elite 21 Para Special forces and according to his colleagues, he was known for always leading from the front.

Late Col. Santosh Mahadik was the Commanding Officer, 41 Rashtriya Rifles, when he wass killed in a gunfight with terrorists in the jungles of Haji Naka area near the Line of Control in Kupwara district of Jammu & Kashmir in November 2015.

In his sacrifice, the expert paratrooper and a combat underwater diver saved the lives of many men under his charge and was later posthumously awarded the Shaurya Chakra by the government of India.

Following her husband’s footstep, Swati had joined joined the Army’s Officers Training Academy (OTA) in October last year.

“Swati Mahadik was today commissined as an officer after she completed her training at the OTA in Chennai,” said a senior Army officer, who did not wish to be named.

He said Swati will join the Army Ordnance Corps in Pune. Another woman — Nidhi Dubey — was also commissioned as an officer today. Nidhi had also lost her husband who was a Naik in the Army.

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