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Air Commodore Makarand Ranade

Service No 18586 Branch F(P)
Date of Birth: -- --- --
Date Commissioned 06 Dec 1986 Course 138 Course
Service End No Details
Remarks :
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Awards and Decorations


Number of Awards: 1
 
Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg CdrMakarand Ranade18586 F(P)Award Date 06 Apr 2005Announced 26 Jan 2006
Details : Wing Commander Makarand Ranade (18586) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of a MiG-21 Squadron since 10 Jul 2001 as the Commanding Officer. On 06 Apr 2005, he was authorised to fly a Practice Interception mission by Dark Night. He got airborne in a Mig-21 Bis aircraft. After take off, at 1. 8 km height, during the right turn towards the exercise area, he experienced booster hydraulic system failure with the pressure rapidly dropping to zero. This resulted in aircraft controls becoming hard and ineffective, making maneuvering of the aircraft difficult. Realising the gravity of the situation, he took prompt actions and decided to execute an immediate overweight landing at base. An overweight, flapless approach and landing in dark night conditions in a MiG 21 aircraft with restricted aircraft control calls not only for precision, skill but also for courage and determination. On approach, the very high nose up altitude completely obscures runway view. The approach is low with less separation from ground and there is no visual contact with ground due to dark night conditions. All these factors combine to make approach and landing a high risk manoeuvre with negligible margin of error. However, Wg Cdr Ranade continued with recovery undeterred and unfazed by the challenge of the situation. Wg Cdr Ranade has handled the emergency in a very competent and commendable manner. He has stayed calm and yet quickly grasped the emergency indications and the need to land without delay. By his sheer presence of mind, prompt actions and commendable flying skill, he has managed to recover the aircraft safely. Post flight inspection revealed that a portion of the rear fuselage had got burnt in flight due in the fire caused by burning of the hydraulic fluid around the heat shield. Any more delay in recovery would have inevitably caused the main hydraulic system to fail, thereby forcing the pilot to eject and consequently resulting in loss of a costly aircraft, For this act of gallantry during an emergency by dark night, the Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Wing Commander Makarand Ranade.
Unit : 26 Sqn
Reference : Gazette of India dated 18th March 2006 - No.30-Pres/2006 dated 26th January 2006 & AFD2006 Investiture