Patiala, October 9, 2023: Thapar Institute of Engineering and Technology (TIET) unveiled a memorial in the form of a mural at the library of the institute to commemorate the sacrifice of Sub Lt Gur Iqbal Singh Sandhu, who laid down his life for the country during the 1971 India-Pakistan war.
The function was attended by a number of alumni, faculty members, and batchmates of Sub Lt Sandhu. Many Army officers who graduated from TIET attended the function, led by veteran Major General Gurdeep Singh and Rear Admiral Anil Handa.
Er Gursharan Singh Sandhu, the younger brother of the late Sub Lt Sandhu, was present too. Sub Lt Sandhu graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering in 1970. He joined the Indian Navy in May 1970 and was posted aboard INS Khukri during the 1971 war against Pakistan. He was the youngest officer on board.
INS Khukri was a frontline warship of the Western Fleet that played a key role during operations on the Western Naval Front. On December 9, 1971, while carrying out an anti-submarine patrol, an underwater explosion caused by a torpedo severely damaged the ship, resulting in it taking in water. A second torpedo hit caused severe damage, and the ship started sinking. Despite the fact that his chances of survival were dimming, Sub Lt. Gur Iqbal Singh Sandhu fought the odds, displaying exceptional courage and initiative in the face of danger, and made the sacrifice along with 193 officers and comrades in arms led by Commander Mahendra Nath Mulla.