Capt Mahendra Nath Mulla, MVC, Indian Navy

Capt Mahendra Nath Mulla, MVC

During the Indo-Pak war in December 1971, two ships of the Indian Navy under the command of Capt Mulla, senior officer of a frigate squadron, were assigned the task of locating and destroying a Pakistani submarine in the North Arabian Sea.

During these operations on the night of 9th December, the INS "Khukri" was hit by torpedoes fired by the enemy submarine and sank. Having decided to abandon ship, Capt Mulla, without regard for his personal safety, supervised the arrangements for the rescue of his ship's company in a very cool, calm and methodical manner.

Even at a later stage whilst the ship was sinking, Capt Mulla showed presence of mind and continued to direct rescue operations and refused to save himself by giving his own life-saving gear to a sailor. Having directed as many of his men as possible to leave the ship, Capt Mulla went back to the bridge to see what further rescue operations could be performed. In doing so, Capt Mulla was last seen going down with his ship.

His action and behaviour and the example he set have been in keeping with the highest traditions of the service. Captain M.N. Mulla displayed conspicuous gallantry and dedication.