Penguin to publish biography of Captain Vijyant Thapar

New Delhi, May 6 (PTI) Captain Vijyant Thapar was only 22 when he was martyred in the Kargil war in 1999. Now two decades after his demise comes his “first-ever” biography giving a rare insight into the heart and mind of one of India’s bravest soldiers.   The e-book, which will be released on May 15, is titled as “Vijyant at Kargil: The Life of a Kargil Hero”. Penned by Vijyant’s father Colonel VN Thapar and writer Neha Dwivedi, a martyr’s daughter herself, the book has been published by Penguin Random House.

A fourth-generation army officer, Vijyant dreamt of serving his country even as a young boy, according to the book.

In this biography, one learns about his journey to join the Indian Military Academy and the experiences that shaped him into a “fine officer”.  Replete with anecdotes from his family and close friends, the book gives a peek into the short but extraordinary life of a man whose name remains etched in Indian history.

“A nation requires heroes to sustain itself. War in Kargil produced one such hero, Captain Vijyant Thapar. Coming generations have a right to such a rich legacy which they can lean on. He lived and died for the conviction that India is great, an ‘idea’ worth dying for,” said his father.

“His life and thoughts must be preserved and passed on to the next generation. This book written by a soldier father on a soldier son is but a pause for the new heroes that will emerge from the ashes of Vijyant,” he added.

At the start of the Kargil conflict, the captain’s battalion was first tasked with capturing the Tololing peak, which proved to be a crucial victory for Vijyant and his team.

On June 28, 1999, two Rajputana Rifles were given the task of capturing the ‘Three Pimples, Knoll and Lone Hill area’. Vijyant was killed by a burst of fire while leading his team in Knoll, which was eventually conquered on June 29, 1999.

In his last letter to his family, which since then has inspired many Indians, he predicted his death and wrote, “…Even if I become a human again… I’ll join the Army and fight for my nation…” He was awarded a Vir Chakra posthumously.

“At a time, when the need of the hour for us as a generation is to be able to look beyond ‘self’, the story of a young 22 year old hero, Captain Vijyant Thapar, who didn’t just grow up with the ingrained ethos of service before self, but went on to put his countrymen, his unit and lastly his friends before his own life, is exactly what we need to read.  'This is for every young individual that goes to bed with the same dream every night- that of making a difference,” said co-author Dwivedi. PTI MG TRS TRS