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Air Commodore Krishen Kumar Bakshi

Service No 5012 Branch F(P)
Date of Birth: 14 Jan 1935
Date Commissioned 08 Oct 1955 Course 66 Course
Service End Retired on 31 Jan 1989
Remarks :
Promotions Gazetted
Wg Cdr : 01 Apr 1976Gp Capt : 01 May 1979Acting Air Cmde : 16 Aug 1983Air Cmde : 19 May 1984
Google the Bharat Rakshak Website for : "K K Bakshi"
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

DatesRankUnitLocationAppointmentPhoto
01 Feb 1974 - 08 Jan 1977Wg CdrNo.10 SquadronJodhpur CO
21 Oct 1980 - 13 Sep 1982Gp CaptAir Force AcademyDundigal CI (Flying)
13 Sep 1982 - 16 Jul 1983Gp CaptFighter Training WingHakimpet Cmdt
03 Aug 1983 - 22 Jan 1985Air Cmde11 WingTezpur AOC
 
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Awards and Decorations


Number of Awards: 2
  
Vir Chakra
Sqn LdrKrishen Kumar Bakshi5012 F(P)Award Date 06 Dec 1971Announced 26 Jan 1972
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Squadron Leader Krishan Kumar Bakshi was a senior pilot in one of the Fighter-Bomber Squadron. On the 6th December, 1971, he was leading a mission over Naya Chor and Dhoran area. While proceeding to the target his Number two spotted a formation of four enemy Sabre aircraft. Though outnumbered he turned towards the enemy aircraft and engaged them in aerial battle and in the ensuring dogfight he shot down one Sabre. In addition he also led a number of offensive air strike missions causing extensive destruction to enemy ground defended positions, Vehicles and troops in the face of heavy ground fire.

Throughout, Squadron Leader Krishan Kumar Bakshi displayed gallantry, professional skill and devotion to duty of a high order.

Unit : 220 Sqn
Reference : Gazette of India , 29th July 1972 - No.92 - Pres/72 dated 18th July 1972
Vayu Sena Medal
Wg CdrKrishen Kumar Bakshi5012 F(P)Award Date Announced 15 Aug 1976
Details :

Wing Commander Krishan Kumar Bakshi was a Flight Commander in a Fighter/Bomber Squadron from January, 1974. He took part in the 1971 operations and was awarded Vir Chakra in December, 1971, for gallantry in the Rajasthan Sector.

On the 4th March 1976, during a routine training flight he was confronted with a serious in-flight emergency involving failure of the starboard engine soon after take off, resulting in engine fire and jamming of rudder control. Wing Commander Bakshi reacted to the emergency in a cool manner, controlled the fire and brought the aircraft down to a safe height despite marginal control The engine casing had burst causing extensive Airframe damage. With remarkable presence of mind and professional skill, he landed the aircraft safely and avoided a serious accident. By this act, he not only saved aircraft but also brought back valuable evidence which would otherwise have been destroyed.

Wing Commander Krishan Kumar Bakshi thus displayed exemplary courage, determination and devotion to duty of a high order.

Unit : 10 Sqn
Reference : Gazette of India dated 26th February 1977 - No.21- Pres/77 dated 6th August 1976

Additional Notes

Remarks: Obituary Notice Note added: 2011-06-24
From Wg Cdr S C Batra :  It is my sad duty to inform that our dear Air Cmde (Retd) Joe KK Bakshi Vr.C. has left for his heavenly abode 22nd June,  at 0630 hrs. He is survived by his wife, son and a daughter and their family  His son Raj spoke to Air Cmde Brother JL Bhargava and the last rights are being performed in Delhi
Remarks: By Air Marshal S G Inamdar Note added: 2011-06-24

Late Air Cmde KK Bakshi, from the 66th Pilots Course, arrived at AFFC, Jodhpur, in Nov 61, to begin his QFI innings with 83rd PC. Then Flt Lts BB Bhadkamkar, AK Sapre (both Mysteres) and SD Karnik, AK Thakur (both Hunters) plus a couple of others, who arrived along with him from FIS, were also, I think, the same PC.

His first Basic Stage pupils on the HT-2  were Flt Cdts DK Patel, HS Sidhu, KS Shergill & SG Inamdar, of the 83rd PC. It was perhaps the first time that the pupils & the instructor graduated as a team from Basic Stage to the Inter Stage, to fly the T6G Texans (Fg Offr Kuldip Rai Med, also came to him as a pupil, at this stage). I owed him a huge personal debt of gratitude all through my IAF journey, for all that he taught me, both in the air and on the ground; principally, he ensured that I passed out successfully, despite me & my not-so-insignificant attitude, attention, confidence and application deficits! His kind visits to me in the office when I was Vice Chief & then Member, UPSC, in 2002 & 2007, were among my moments of great pride and importance!

He was a man with a rare mix of qualities: he had a very tough, forbidding and, at times, decidedly menacing exterior (we used to call him:"Kaalon ka Kaal"...KK... for his rough language and demeanour in the cockpit) but a very warm interior full of genuine interest in & an abiding concern for each of his pupils, after the sortie. I recall a time when he asked me if I understood spoken Punjabi; when I said "no", he nearly exploded saying, "why the xxxx didn't you tell me that earlier, I wouldn't have wasted all those xxxxxxx Punjabi expletives on you in the cockpit for the last two months!"

Very aptly described by Pingo, Mini, Batra and many others in their obit e-mails, Air Cmde Bakshi was all that & more! He was a virtual tiger when it came to fighting for his pupils' interests and cause, NO matter who he was up against! Seeing him, a mere Flt Lt then, walk up to and take on the then CFI (EL Birch) & the CI (DI Springett) in Jodhpur, on issues concerning injustice to his pupils, was a deep imprint and lasting education in downward loyalty and courage, both physical & moral: he had an unusual lot of those two virtues which were there for all to see as he went on to fight the 1971 war, command an HF squadron and Tezpur! There indeed are many fighter pilots; there probably aren't as many true "fighters"!

In the list of birthdays falling on 14 Jan, the Sankranti day (Nanda Cariappa, Kitcha Krishnaswami, Mrs Verna Pinto & Nirdosh Tyagi), I am pained to have to now make one deletion: the name of Air Cmde KK Bakshi, after 45 years of either making a call or sending a card or e-mail to him, every single year!

I grieve the departure of a fiery fighter (pilot) and a great personal benefactor! May his soul rest in peace!    

In Grief,

SG "Inoo" Inamdar.

Remarks: From Air Marshal Philip Rajkumar Note added: 2011-06-24

Late Air Cmde KK 'Joe' Bakshi was a wonderful personality. I first met him when he was attached to No 1 Sqn flying Mysteres

During the Kutch flap in April 1965. We flew together on numerous low level nav and practice strike missions while waiting for the balloon to go up. His debriefs helped me hone my low level tactical formation flying skills. Nothing happened in May,June 65 and the QFI's went back.

By end August, Joe sir was back with us and this time I flew with him during Ops Riddle. For us young Flying Officers his hearty laugh and fearlessness was a great source of inspiration in the crew room. When Adampur was under PAF B-57 attack at night his banter and expletives livened up waits in the trenches. He was a great guy to have around at times like that.

Years later in the late 1980's when I was Chief test Pilot at ASTE, Joe sir was the Director Projects at Air Hq and I had to interact with him a lot. In over 20 years the man had not changed! He was most helpful in arranging for whatever we needed for trial support and even came to trial locations at Pokaran and Jamnagar whenever he could escape from VB.

All of us are poorer for having lost a great friend. May his soul Rest In Peace.

Philip Rajkumar.