The Brave Jump - Award for Dare

G J Brahmbhatt

G J Brahmbhatt, popular as Guru amongst his friends joined the Department of Customs and Excise as Inspector in the year 1975.

In 1979 Guru was transferred and posted in the Preventive Section for anti smuggling work for the entire coastline running from Navasari to Umbergoan including Daman.

Guru was transferred out twice of this charge but his immediate bosses retained him with the anti smuggling squad by stating that his services couldn’t be spared.

Guru worked with this section till 1989 and received the Presidential Award at the Risk of Life in 1982.

He was selected for deputation to Mumbai International Airport as Air Customs officer and in 1992 transferred back to Vadodara.

In 1992 Guru was transferred to Vadodara Central Excise and was promoted as Superintendent in 1994. He was again brought back for anti evasion work in 1997.

In 2001 Brahambhatt was awarded the 2nd Presidential Award for Distinguished Record of Service.

Guru took voluntary retirement from Vadodara Headquarters cell.

During his exciting career Guru was able to arrest big Gun Sukur Narain Bakhia and also interrogate Dawood Ibrahim Keskar and also record his statement.

His wife Shobha  is a graduate and his son holds a Management degree.

His married daughter is settled in Vadodara.

Post retirement Guru is working as Director with a private sector enterprise in Food sector at Vadodara.

Guru Brahambhatt is also the VP in a club of Exporters Importers Association or EXIM CLUB at Vadodara.

Editor writes the Brahmbhatt Saga.

It’s a fascinating and a  story of dare. 

How Brahmbhatt won the Presidential Award at Risk to Life. 

Guru Brahmbhatt in Uniform
Guru Brahmbhatt in Uniform

It was an operation to intercept a vessel carrying large contraband goods near Daman coast.

The vessel involved was ‘Chandrasagar’ registered as UMR 1021 at Umbergoan. It was a powerful speed vessel with twin 450hp engines and could reach Daman coast in less than 100 hours from the Gulf.

As per intelligence the vessel was carrying electronic goods, computers, zip fasteners and watches in large quantities.

The goods belonged to Sukur Narain Bakhia a well established and a big time smuggler of the area. Apparently the smuggled goods were to be unloaded at Daman Bunglow of Bakhia on the coast of Daman.

When Chandrasagar was intercepted the regular Customs CPC was not readily available with Brahmbhatt party and could not reach the area in spite of an urgent request.

Presidential award for risk to life
Citation  for The Presidential Award to Guru Brahmbhatt in 1982 for Risk to Life

Left with no choice Brahmbhatt chose a small Fishing Trawler with Tindel Ratanji at the helm.  The Customs vessel was really tiny as it could barely hold the raid party of seven.

Brahmbhatt had to stand on the top neck of the Fishing Trawler and lead the chase.

When the customs signalled Chandrasagar to stop, instead of stopping, the crew members abandoned the steering controls on the deck and went below the top deck. Thus Chandrasagar started moving around erratically at fast speed without any steering control.

Tindel Ratanji was reluctant to bring the trawler close to a fast moving Chandrasagar because of inherent danger involved in such a maneuver. A simple touch would have sent the fishing trawler spinning out of control and the impact would possibly have broken it apart thereby endangering the lives of all on board.Brahmbhatt then decided upon a new strategy. They abandoned the chase and instead took the vessel to opposite route to Chandrasagar. They then brought the customs vessel as at 90 degrees to enable Brahmbhatt to  jump into ‘Chandrasagar’.

It was a very dramatic and very daring maneuver.  But importantly the jump was successfully made. Soon others followed.  Customs were then able to wrest control of Chandrasagar.  All the eleven smugglers on board were arrested and smuggled goods worth nearly 83 lakhs seized.

Shri Brahmbhatt at the momnet faced three great risks to his life. First he could have fallen into the choppy seas while attempting to jumpand crushed between the two vassels . Second the 11 smugglers on boad Chandradsagar could have turned violent and attacked Shri Brahmbhatt . But for this young young officer's initiative , dedication to duty even in face of imminent risk of life , it wouldn't have been possible to bring the smuggler's vessel under the control of Customs. 

This display of raw courage , gallantry and devotion to duty made Shri Brahmbhatt a worthy recepient of the Presidential Award for Risk to Life . 

Guru receiving risk to life award
Guru Brahmbhatt receiving the Presidential Award for Risk to Life

2nd time Presidential Award for Distinhuished Record of Services

Guru Receiving Meritorious Award
Guru Brahmbhatt receiving the  Presidential Award for 'Specially Distinguished Service'

Guru and Sudha
Guru Bhrambhatt with his wife Shobha in recent times



All facts are true and factual. Text is ok

Officers of such high merit and courage have kept the Service alive ! We are all so proud of you Guru Brahmbhatt ji

Among the friends of GURU, I am also one and feel proud of his excellency. We started career during the same time. Of course l had had a few chances to have connivance of the Hero. I wish him to live happily with sound health during his further life.

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