IAF chopper crash: Lance Naik Sai Teja laid to rest in Andhra

Chittoor: The last rites of Lance Naik Sai Teja were performed with military honours amid emotional scenes at his native village Yeguvaregadi in Andhra Pradesh on Sunday.

He had died in the December 8 IAF helicopter crash that had resulted in the death of Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) General Bipin Rawat, his wife Madhulika Rawat, and 10 other defence personnel near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu.

Sai Teja was serving as Personal Security Officer to CDS, Gen Rawat. Belonging to the Kuruba community, Sai Teja joined the Indian Army in 2012 as a sepoy. While serving in Bangalore Regiment, he was selected for para commando training. Last year, he was appointed as PSO to CDS.

The soldier’s body, which was identified on Saturday, was brought from Bengaluru to his village by road.

Large number of youth who were holding the national flag in their hands and raising slogans of ‘Sai Teja Amar Rahe’ joined the procession with their motorbikes.

They also showered petals on the ambulance carrying the body. Teja’s parents, wife, children, and other family members were inconsolable.

Sai Teja, 27, is survived by wife Shyamala, son Mokshagana, 4, and a daughter Darshini, 2.