Number Name Branch Died in Service? Picture?

Wing Commander Pankaj Kathpal

Service No & Branch 22955 F(P)
Date of Birth: -- --- ---- Commissioned: 18 Jun 1994 Course: 153 Course
Service End: Retired on 14 Mar 2019 Voluntary Retirement Nick Name :
Qualifications Held :
Remarks :
Promotions Gazetted
Fg Offr : 18 Jun 1995Sqn Ldr : 18 Jun 2003Wg Cdr : 18 Jun 2007
Badges Qualified
Google the Bharat Rakshak Website for : "P Kathpal"
Notes:1)Branch is at retirement and may not match with branch at Commission 2)Notional seniority is reflected in dates of substantive rank.

Appointments, Postings & Other Service Particulars

26 Mar 2012 - 15 Jun 2014Wg CdrNo.121 Helicopter FlightBombay Commanding Officer
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Awards and Decorations

Number of Awards: 1
Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Sqn LdrPankaj Kathpal22955 ADMAward Date Announced 26 Jan 2006
Details : Squadron Leader Pankaj Kathpal (22955) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of a Mi-17 Helicopter Unit since 12 Jul 2004 and has been the unit supervisor since then.On 31 Dec 2004, in the aftermath of the devastating Tsunami disaster wherein the Andaman & Nicobar Islands were badly affected, the base was called upon to launch three helicopters for relief operations at Carnicobar. A Helicopter Combat Leader, Sqn Ldr Kathpal had flown more than 2500 hours and was a unit supervisor. Moreover, having served at a helicopter unit at Carnicobar earlier, he volunteered to take part in the operation. Sqn Ldr Kathpal with his professional acumen worked out the details of manpower, ration, accommodation and various operational requirements, including the requirements for staging, camping, messing as well as equipments necessary for safe and effective conduct of relief operations.Since he was the only air warrior familiar with the peculiarities of operating in Carnicobar area, he familiarised the complete detachment with the nuances of sea flying and inter-island operations and the detachment was fully operational in record time. Sqn Ldr Kathpal and his crew operated at the peak of human and aircraft limitations In marginal weather and inhospitable terrain. Under his able leadership, the officer conducted landings at restricted and unprepared areas, evacuating casualties and dropping relief material to bring maximum succour to the helpless locals. This was accomplished in such a professional manner as if it were a routine for the team. On 14 Jan 2005, he was tasked to airlift ration and fuel for around 250 people marooned at Katchal Island, The island being a vast jungle, there was hardly any place for the helicopter to land. Sqn Ldr Kathpal displayed utmost professionalism by selecting a restricted clearing in the jungle and successfully carried out the landing, after which the rescue team was able to provide relief material, which was extremely critical considering the fact that the island had been cut off for more than 20 days, and more Importantly, established communication facilities with the island. Moreover, the team, under Sqn Ldr Kathpal, was able to rescue three personnel who had miraculously survived the wrath of the Tsunami and shifted them to the rehabilitation camp,During the entire operations, Sqn Ldr Kathpal flew a total of 56 hours airlifting 72 metric tonnes of relief material and 125 marooned personnel, thus demonstrating true spirit in the midst of adversity and highlighting the professionalism of the Indian Air Force.For his selflessness, devotion to duty and upholding the highest traditions of the Indian Air Force, The Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Squadron Leader Pankaj Kathpal.
Unit : 128 HU
Reference : Gazette of India dated 18th March 2006 - No.30-Pres/2006 dated 26th January 2006 & AFD2006 Investiture
The data in the header section of this page comes from the Gazette of India - Click here to see the source
Note: All the data available here is publicly available in the Gazette of India, published by the Indian Government, or from public domain sources, press releases about Awards and Right-To-Information (RTI) Requests. Additionally data shared by veterans is added to the page with permission. No data with respect to serving officers below the rank of AVM is displayed. Information in Gazette of India and Award citations and photographs as released by the Indian Air Force are the only details displayed.