Wing Commander Sanjiv Sahay was commissioned on the 31st May, 1961. Since then he has been in various fighter Squadrons. On assuming command of a supersonic squadron in July 1979, Wing Commander Sanjiv Sahay took stock of his resources and with single mindedness, meticulous planning and optimum utilization of each resource, he was able to complete 200 hours of inspection on almost all his new aircraft which had fallen due for inspection at the same period. Due to this faultless planning, the serviceability has gradually picked up and for the last year it was at an all time high figure of 70.13% average. His unit has also achieved 100% serviceability five times during this period. During this period, the Squadron achieved a flying output of 2943 hours. This entire flying has been achieved without a single accident and the Squadron has maintained accidentĂ‚Âfree record for the last three years. The Squadron won the Arjuna 1979 trophy for being the best fighter Squadron in the Western Air Command in interSquadron Gunnery Meet and was adjudged the fighter Squadron for 1979 of WAC. In 1980, this Squadron also had an accident-free year and won two trophies the first for being the best Fighter Squadron in WAC and another for being best in Maintenance.
On 9th February, 1981, Wing Commander Sanjiv Sahay was leading a medium level strike mission in front guns for exĂ‚ÂArjuna. After pulling out of the dive, after a front gun attack on SK Range he heard a thud on his aircraft. He experienced a high frequency vibrations setting in and he decided to turn to base giving a call that he suspected a hit by bullet ricochet. He climbed up and decided to carry out an immediate landing by doing a descending circuit. He lowered his undercarriage in line with the landing dumbĂ‚Âbell. He commenced his turn on to finals and throttled back to 85% RPM at 1.3 Km with the intention of lowering full flaps after having turned and aligned with the runway. As soon as he throttled back, he heard a cracking sound from the rear. At this stage, his engine flamed out. At the time of flame out, the height was 1.3 Km. He immediately put the relight switch "ON" observing his height, distance out and speed that the relight would at least take 15 to 20 seconds, he decided to eject. The aircraft was pointing towards the domestic area of HALWARA airfield. He turned right, pulled the aircraft up gently and when the aircraft was facing the green fields, he ejected. Wing Commander Sahay avoided a catastrophe by turning away from populated area. By this courageous act, in such a critical stage, Wing Commander Sahay has set a brilliant example of this presence of mind, bravery and professional acumen.
Wing Commander Sahay has thus displayed high professional competence, leadership, courage and exceptional devotion to duty.