Major (Retired) Vinayak Dwarakanath Gupte (77) who had fought all the three wars of 1962, 1965 and 1971 died last week after a prolonged illness at his residence in Pune. He is survived by wife Sulabha, two married sons Ajit,Vijay, daughters-in-law and grandchildren.
Born in Pune on July 30, 1935, Gupte underwent training at National Defence Academy. After completing training at Indian Military Academy at Dehradun, he joined the Assam Regiment in1957. During his service with the Indian Army between 1957 and 1982 he fought the China war in 1962 and both the wars against Pakistan in 1965 and 1971.
In the 1962 war, Gupte had raised Ladakh Scouts battalion and played an important role in creating airfields at Ladakh. Taking into account the terrain difficulty and high altitude, it was very tough to create an air field there and Indian Army as well as Indian Air Force achieved this feat.
Gupte also worked as a cricket umpire for Ranji matches as well as test matches and one-day internationals. He officiated at more than 1,400 matches and was adjudged as the best umpire in Australia for India’s tour in Australia. He was working as an umpire till recently.