Axel, an Indian Army sniffer dog that died last month during an anti-terrorism operation in Jammu and Kashmir’s Baramulla area. In this year’s bravery honors, he will earn a ‘Mention-in-Despatches.’ The declaration came only days before India’s 76th anniversary of independence.
Axel is one of 42 who have received a ‘Mention-in-Despatches’ for exceptional and honorable service. Mention-in-Despatches is more prestigious than other canine recognition medals, such as the Chief of Army Staff Commendation Card and Vice Chief of Army Staff Commendation Card.
As a result, it will be the highest bravery honor given to an army dog in recent years for their participation in a counter-insurgency operation.
The two-year-old German Shephard Army dog gave his life while serving with the 26 Army Dog Unit. Axel joined the unit in December of last year, according to reports.
According to accounts, Axel was part of a counter-terrorism operation with 29 Rashtriya Rifles. After his canine comrade Bajaj cleared and cleaned the building for access, Axel was dispatched on the scene to seek for the terrorists.
Axel cleared the first room meticulously, but as soon as he reached the second, a coward terrorist opened fire on him indiscriminately. According to the official Army account, Axel walked for 15 seconds after being shot before succumbing.
Army soldiers recovered the canine’s body when the gunfight ended. Axel was said to have many wounds as well as a femur fracture.
Aside with Axel, his canine buddy Bajaj has also got a recognition from the Chief of Army Staff (COAS).
According to WION, the Baramulla operation lasted eight hours and resulted in the death of the terrorist, later identified as Kupwara resident Akhtar Hussain Bhatt. The slain terrorist belonged to the outlawed Jaish-e-Mohammed group.