In January, 1982, it was decided that a joint Indo-Soviet Space mission would be launched in 1984. Wg Cdr Ravish Malhotra responded most readily to a call for Indian cosmonaut volunteers. After a very rigorous selection process, including a most stringent medical examination which covered weightlessness and other strenuous mental and physical tests associated with space flights, he was declared fully fit and was selected as one of the two cosmonaut candidates from among 150 highly qualified and experienced pilots of the Air Force.
Wg Cdr Ravish Malhotra underwent an extremely demanding training schedule as cosmonaut at the YURI GAGARIN CENTER in USSR for 18 months and completed the same with great credit and distinction. During his training he displayed unflinching dedication, outstanding zeal, exceptional professionalism and courage. His commitment to his training as a cosmonaut, which involved many challenges and hazards, was total and complete. This not only won him many an accolade from all quarters of the training centre but indeed has been a matter of pride for the nation. He thus kept himself in complete readiness for the First joint Indo-Soviet Space Venture on 3rd April, 1984. Since only one Indian Cosmonaut was to go into space, Sqn Ldr Rakesh Sharma was finally selected for the flight.
Wg Cdr Ravish Malhotra during his entire period of training has thus displayed conspicuous gallantry and courage.