ITBP canine, horse decorated with first animal service medals
Dog 'Sophia' and horse 'Thunderbolt'–the four-legged soldiers of border guarding force ITBP–on Monday created history by becoming the first animals which were decorated with special service medals.
While seven-year-old Thunderbolt is part of the Animal Transport unit of the force, 'lifeline' of the force at high-altitude forward posts, 3-year-old Sophia undertakes special sniffing operations to detect IEDs with her handler in Left Wing extremism hit areas of Chhattisgarh.
Indo-Tibetan Border Police chief Krishna Chaudhary decorated the two during the celebrations of the 55th Raisng day of the force here. The two dutifully marched up to the saluting dais and bowed their heads to receive the medals even as the DG offered them 'ladoos' as a token of appreciation for their work.
While Sophia is credited with successfully sanitising events attended by VVIP dignitaries, including numerous functions attended by PM Narendra Modi and has sniffed out numerous Improvised Explosive Devices in the Naxal theatre, Thunderstorm has worked for a number of years in providing rations and ammunition to high-altitude ITBP posts along the China border under hazardous climate, blizzards and thin oxygen.