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Nitesh Kumar Sahoo

A melancholic mood prevailed in the native village of the Odia IAF jawan Rana Pratap Das, who was a victim of the tragic Indian Air Force chopper crash on December 8. 

The ill-fated IAF helicopter with the Chief of Defence Staff Gen Bipin Rawat, his wife and 12 other military personnel on board crashed near Coonoor in Tamil Nadu on Wednesday. Group Captain Varun Singh (Shaurya Chakra) is the only lucky survivor among the 14 persons. 

Among the deceased, Odia Jawan Rana, hailing from Krushnachandrapur village under Kandala panchayat in Angul district , was serving as a Junior Warrant Officer in IAF. 

Son of Sribatsha Das and Sushama, Rana had joined the IAF in 2005 and was deployed in Bihar. He was the younger son of his elderly parents and is survived by his wife Sibangi, a dentist by profession, and, a one-year-old son. 

The last rites of CDS Bipin Rawat, his wife and Brig LS Lidder is being held in Delhi today, however since the bodies of the remaining 10 others are yet to be identified, the mortal remains of Rana Pratap has been kept in Army Base Hospital in Delhi. 

As per sources, after visual identification and DNA matching of his body with his family members, Rana's mortal remains will be handed over for the last rites believed to be held in his ancestral village likely on Monday.

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