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Wing Commander Mahtab Rai Handa

Service No 11276 Branch F(P)
Date of Birth:
Date Commissioned 31 Dec 1967 Course 98 Course
Service End Retired on 31 Oct 1990
Remarks :
Promotions Gazetted
Wg Cdr : 20 Jul 1986
Google the Bharat Rakshak Website for : "M R Handa"
Notes: 1) Ranks shown are substantive ranks at retirement. 2)Branch is at retirement and may not match with branch at Commission 3)Notional seniority is reflected in dates of substantive rank.

Appointments, Postings & Other Service Particulars

17 Jun 1985 - 07 Jun 1987Wg CdrNo.119 Helicopter Unit Commanding Officer
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Awards and Decorations

Number of Awards: 1
Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg CdrMahtab Rai Handa11276 F(P)Award Date 24 Feb 1985Announced 26 Jan 1987
Details :

Wing Commander Mahtab Rai Handa was specially selected as a helicopter pilot for the Fourth Antarctica Expedition. In Antarctica, Wg Cdr Handa showed tremendous zeal and contributed substantially to the flying effort and achievement of the expedition goals against tremendous odds.

On 24 Feb 85, as soon as it was learnt that a naval Chetak had force landed on a floating iceberg and could not be rescued by any available means within the capability of the ship, he took the decision in coordination with the Expedition leader to rescue the naval aircrew and recover their aircraft by the Pratap helicopter. He flew two sorties for rescue of the crew from a floating ice berg which had undulating surface and several cracks. He also helped Wg Cdr Simeos in flying the repaired Pratap helicopter which had suffered heavy damage. This helicopter was flown onto a small ramp on board the ship, after it was exposed to a number of blizzards for 42 days. With his dedicated participation in the flying effort with only serviceable Pratap helicopter, all men and material for the Expedition were airlifted to the new station at Dakshin Gangotri Hills.

For his exceptional devotion to duty, professional skill and competence, coupled with outstanding courage shown during the crisis, the President is pleased to award Vayu Seva Medal to Wing Commander Mahtab Rai Handa.

Unit : Indian Scientific Expedit
Reference : Gazette of India dated 25th April 1987 - No.37-Pres/87 dated 26th January 1987