Col. Santosh Yashwant Mahadik passed away last November in the forests of Kupwara, Kashmir while battling militants. Deeply inspired by his life, his 32-year-old widow is determined to take forward his work by joining the Army. Swati Mahadik is all set to wear the olive green uniform. She plans to clear the Service Selection Board (SSB) examination and undergo further training at the Officers Training Academy in Chennai.
According to The Hindu, at her husband’s funeral, Swati displayed rare moral courage to sublimate her personal pain for an ideal, her husband had passionately fought. Instead of adopting a revanchist attitude towards militants, Swati, like her husband, entertains a noble and challenging vision to integrate militants into the mainstream.
“Militants are provoked and misguided. They are humans like us. I want to educate them and do something for them as my husband did,” Swati had said in the days after his funeral. “A month after the death of my brother, she shifted to Pune and started gearing up to crack the SSB examination. We supported her and took care of the children. Her daughter Kartiki is in Std. VI and she has been sent to a boarding school at Dehradun and son Swarajya is studying in a boarding school at Panchgani,” said Col. Mahadik’s brother, Jaivant Ghorpade, a milkman.
Swati, a graduate from the University of Pune, began the intense training with tremendous dedication. “On May 25, she was called for an interview, and she has cleared all five rounds. We are proud of her,” Mr. Ghorpade said.