Finally, some relief for martyr kin: Army dependent cards

Following a series of pleas, numerous rounds of talks with senior Army

officials, reports by Newsline and an online campaign, the Army has finally come up with some relief for the family of the late Major Navneet Vats.

To make sure that they can avail free medical treatment at the Command Hospital, the Army has issued the Army dependent card to Veena Vats, mother of the late Major who lost his life fighting terrorists in Srinagar on November 20, 2003. It has also issued the Army dependent card to Nimesh, brother of the late Major.

Neeraj Vats, father of the late Major, had died on July 27, 2013, fighting against weekly dialysis and old age. In her late 70s with acute depression, Veena was left to feed her 28-year-old differently abled son Nimesh without much support.

After a Newsline report about the family on September 17, 2013, some people came forward to help the martyr's family. One among them was Colonel (retired) Rajinder Singh who runs an old age home at Mullanpur, Chandigarh.

The Army also took note of the plight of the martyr's family and a proposal was made to shift the mother and son into a home with the officer-in-charge acting as their local guardian. A senior ranking Army officer of Western Command visited the family and discussed the options with Veena.

Veena who had to undergo treatment for acute depression at a private hospital in Mohali last month will now get free treatment at Command Hospital, Western Command, Chandi Mandir, Panchkula. Nimesh who suffers from Down Syndrome can also avail treatment at the Command Hospital.

"I am really happy about what Army has done. I took Veenaji and Nimesh to the Command Hospital and got their dependent cards made. She was properly examined by a doctor and given medicines for the next 15 days. The doctor said that she had improved a lot," said Charanjeet Singh, a former colleague and a friend of Vats.

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