13 bravehearts saluted in city

A number of people from the region who had braved odds in life and emerged victorious were honoured with bravery awards by Lt General Sanjiv Chachra, General Officer Commanding-in- Chief, Army Head Quarters, Western Command, at a ceremony held on Thursday. A total of 13 people were awarded.

Among those honoured was Harman Singh Sidhu, a resident of Chandigarh, who lost his ability to walk in a road accident in 1996. In 2005, he launched a website to create awareness about road safety. He has also filed a PIL on removing liquor vends from national highways.

Harbans Singh Brahmpuri, an artiste and folk singer, who hails from Brahmpura village in Ludhiana, said he had pledged to fight against female foeticide after he was inspired by a couplet of Guru Nanak. He has held several cultural programmes and activities in the past 36 years to create awareness among people about the social evil. He said he faced many difficulties and even life threatening calls. But he continued with his mission.

Mohammad Iqbal Balwan, president of Doda Welfare Society that is based in Jammu and Kashmir, has been working towards saving people from road accidents and land slides that occur frequently in the region. He organises free medical and blood donation camps. In the mid 90's, an era of militancy in J&K, he took an initiative to work for the poor and helpless people, who were victims of terrorism. The society provides ration and money to the families of the victims of natural disasters. They also help teenager to get quality education.

Mansa resident Gurjeevan, who was a student of Class VIII in 2010, prevented a bank robbery by showing courage and beating up the robbers. The robbers were sentenced to 32-years imprisonment.

Amit Sarohar from Sonepat, who has a sports background, was paralysed in an accident in 2007. One of his friends, who met him in the hospital, encouraged him to play wheel chair rugby, and for the first time India took part in international wheel chair rugby contests. He said he faced several hurdles while playing, as he could neither walk nor hold anything in his hands. He then opted for athletics and won three gold medals at national games held at Panchkula in 2010. After that he won the silver medal in discuss throw at the Asian Para-Olympics Games held in China in 2010.

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