Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was born on 15 March 1977 in Kozhikode, Kerala. Maj Sandeep Unnikrishnan came from a Nair family that lived in Bangalore and had relocated from Cheruvannur to the Kozhikode District of Kerala.
The sole child of ISRO official Shri K. Unnikrishnan and Smt Dhanalakshmi Unnikrishnan He was always awed by the notion of joining the Armed Forces since his younger times.
He was a student studying at Frank Anthony Public School in Bangalore prior to his graduation in 1995 from the Science stream. He excelled in school activities and was a star at sports too. He was also a part of the school’s choir and enjoyed watching films.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan’s Training
He enrolled in his time at National Defence Academy (NDA), Pune, Maharashtra in 1995. He graduated as a part of the 1994th Course of the NDA. His NDA classmates recall him being “selfless”, “generous” and “calm and composed”.
Then he enrolled in the 104 IMA Training at IMA Dehradun and graduated in 1999. He was appointed Lieutenant in the 7th Battalion of the Bihar Regiment (Infantry) on 12 July 1999, at 22 years old. When he joined the operational unit, quickly, he developed his field craft and became a hard-working and dedicated soldier.
As a young Lieutenant, he also participated in “Operation Vijay” in July 1999. He was stationed at the posts that were forward to defend against large artillery fire and small arms fire fired by Pakistan troops. In the evening of December 31, 1999, he commanded a troop of six and was able to construct an encampment 200m away from the other side, despite intense fire and opposition.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan Promotion
He was promoted to the rank of Captain from Lieutenant on June 12, 2003. He was then upgraded to the rank of Major on June 13, 2005. In the “Ghatak Course” (at the Commando Wing (Infantry School), Belgaum), one of the toughest courses offered by the Army and he was the highest performer on the course, receiving the “Instructor Grading” and commendation.
He also took a class at the High Altitude Warfare School (HAWS) in Gulmarg and was trained in High Altitude warfare, counter-surveillance and survival techniques. After serving with the Indian Army in different locations in Siachen, Jammu and Kashmir, Gujarat and Rajasthan Maj Sandeep Unnikrishnan was selected to join the National Security Guards.
Following the completion of his training, He was appointed the trainer for the 51 Special Action Group (51 SAG) of the NSG in January 2007. He took part in various activities within the NSG.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan’s Operation Black Tornado
On the evening of November 26th, 2008, a number of iconic structures located in South Mumbai were attacked. One of the places where hostages were held included the century-old Taj Mahal Palace Hotel. Major Unnikrishnan was the team’s commander of the 51 Special Action Group (51 SAG) and was part of the hotel to free hostages.
They entered the building along with 10 commandos and made it to the sixth floor via the stairs. As the group descended the steps, they started to suspect that the perpetrators were on the third floor. Some women were held as hostages inside a room that was closed to the inside.
It was decided by the team to break the door, and once they had done it, they were confronted with a barrage of gunfire from terrorists. The rounds of fire fired by the perpetrators landed on the Commando Sunil Yadav, who was Major Unnikrishnan’s coworker. Major Unnikrishnan confronted the culprits during a scuffle and helped arrange for Yadav’s escape.
Then, Major Unnikrishnan led an ambush on the terrorists who had fled to a different level within the Hotel. After the fight death, he was shot in the back which proved fatal. His final words as per NSG officials were “Do not come up, I will handle them”. His courage and leadership inspired his team to take down all terrorists and complete the task efficiently.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan was given the highest award for peacetime gallantry in the nation “Ashok Chakra” for his extraordinary courage, unwavering determination, and unwavering sacrifice.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan is survived by his father K. Unnikrishnan and his mother Dhanalakshmi Unnikrishnan.
Neha Unnikrishnan: Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan Wife
Sandeep Unnikrishnan’s wife’s name is Neha Unnikrishnan. More details about her wife are not known.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan: Awards and Honours
He was presented with the highly coveted Ashoka Chakra on 26 January 2009, Operation Parakram Medal and Sainya Seva Medal.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan on Combats and Army operations
He was part of Operation Vijay, Operation Parakram, Operation Guard, Operation Black Tornado and many more.
Major Sandeep Unnikrishnan: Last Words
Don’t bother me and I’ll handle the situation (Upar Mat and Main Unhe Sambhal Lunga) These were the words he last spoke to his fellow soldiers during Operation Black Tornado. Following his death, he was slain and died from the wounds that were caused by terrorists’ bullets in the Taj Hotel in Mumbai.