On March 31 last year, 15-year-old Ramdinthara had gone swimming with his friends when one of them began to drown. Though Ramdinthara managed to pull his friend out, he drowned. Ramdinthara is the only child who was conferred the National Bravery Award posthumously this year.
Started by the Indian Council for Child Welfare in 1957, the National Bravery Award was constituted to recognise children for performing outstanding deeds of bravery and serve as an inspiration for many others.
The list of awardees this year has 22 children.
One of the most prestigious of the National Bravery Awards —Bharat Award — is being given to Tarang Atulbhai Mistry from Gujarat.
Tarang Atulbhai Mistry
On the afternoon of March 8 last year, the 17-year-old boy saved four persons from drowning. On the occasion of Dhuleti, Tarang, like several others, had come to the banks of Narmada to take a dip in the river. Hearing the calls of help, Tarang jumped into the 20-25-foot deep water. He saved the lives of four people that day.
Akanksha Gaute was another such braveheart. On the night of June 2 last year, in Chhattisgarh, a group of miscreants started abusing Akanksha and her father who were on their way home. The miscreants started misbehaving with them. With nine years of training in martial arts and a black-belt in karate, 16-year-old Akanksha was unfazed. She beat up three of them.
Another child who was conferred the National Bravery Award this year is nine-year-old Stripleasemen Mylliem from Meghalaya.
On August 2, 2011, Stripleasemen woke up to see his cousin, 28-year-old Bremmingstar Mylliem, go on a killing spree. Bremmingstar killed his parents and younger sister. Stripleasemen woke up his 11-year-old cousin. Kicking the door open, Stripleasemen dragged his cousin to a neighbour’s house and saved her life. The villagers came and apprehended Bremmingstar and handed him over to police.
Another of the bravehearts, Renu, put an end to the repeated abuse of residents of her shelter home. Renu approached a helpline who put her in touch with the Child Welfare Committee. After being apprised of the conditions at the shelter home by Renu, a team of National Commission for Protection of Child Rights conducted a night-long operation at the shelter. The extent of the abuse at the house — psychological and physical — as well as the corporal manner in which punishment was meted out to