|Wg Cdr||Rajiv Kothiyal 15696 F(P)||Unit : National Flight Test Center, ADA||Award Date 04 Jan 01||Announced 26 Jan 01|
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Wing Commander Rajiv Kothiyal (15696) F(P) was commissioned as a Fighter Pilot in the Indian Air Force on 15th June, 1979. After successful stints in various fighter squadrons, he served as a Flight Commander in a front-line-air-superiority MiG29 squadron. On completion of his tenure, he was selected to undergo the Experimental Test Pilot Course at the United States Air Force Test Pilot School. He graduated successfully from his prestigious institution in May 1990. In February, 1995, Wg Cdr Kothiyal was selected for the challenging assignment of being the Test Pilot for the Light Combat Aircraft (LCA) project. Since then he has been actively involved in every facet of the design and development of the LCA, providing the most important pilot-interface to the LCA project. The successful development of control law for the Digital Fly-by-wire Control system, the Cockpit architecture and the pilotâ€™s check lists and emergency procedures are attributed to Wg Cdr Kothiyalâ€™s professional diligence and application of mind. Having successfully participated in the development activities, Wg Cdr Kothiyal was entrusted with undertaking the maiden flight of the first prototype of the LCA on 04-01-2001. This was the first occasion when an aircraft fully developed in India was to fly with a Fly-by-wire system. This complex system is packed with computerised flying controls, which enable an unstable aircraft to be flown with a very high degree of agility. Wg Cdr Kothiyal meticulously planned the test flight and ensured that every contingency was catered for. Wg Cdr Kothiyal flew the maiden test flight in the most exemplary manner.
Wing Commander Rajiv Kothiyal in this pioneering act displayed exceptional professionalism, courage and bravery that were in keeping with the highest traditions of the Indian Air Force.
|Reference:||Notification No. 56-Pres/2001 dated 26th January, 2001 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 26th May, 2001.|
|Cpl||Akhilesh Kumar Mishra 734502 OR||Unit : AFS Bhuj||Award Date 26 Jan 01||Announced 15 Aug 01|
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Corporal Akhilesh Kumar Mishra is on the posted strength of a fighter squadron located at Bhuj, Gujarat since 10 Apr 2000.
A devastating earthquake struck Bhuj on 26 Jan 2001. Immediately after the earthquake Cpl Mishra immediately ran to rescue the survivors. For the next four days, he worked day and night and saved 19 lives. He had no rescue equipment but only his will, imagination, bare hands and raw courage. Snaking through tiny crevices, he worked his way in and pulled out one boy and three women from the remains of three different buildings in Shivnagar area on 26 Jan 2001. The same night, human sounds were detected in another mound of rubble. Despite parts of the building still collapsing in fresh tremors, Cpl Mishra continued to tunnel his way through different collapsed floors of the buildings. Fully aware of the risk of being buried alive any moment, he worked through the night to rescue a father and child. On 27 Jan 01, Cpl Mishra again volunteered to enter a small passage created by Army engineers through the top concrete slab of Vaibhav Laxmi Apartment in Shivnagar. He scraped through the rubble and tunneled his way through three different levels of the buildings (almost 30 feet) to save Cpl Shah and his wife. Working almost non-stop for six hours, he finally rescued Mrs. Gita Ben trapped below two pillars, a roof and a wooden frame in the early hours of 28 Jan 01. On 29 Jan 01, Cpl Mishra rescued a teenaged girl named Avni, who had been pinned down by two concrete beams. In the night, while the tremors continued, he entered the most unstable part of the wreckage and emerged after about an hour with the last survivor in that complex.
Corporal AK Mishra displayed conspicuous valour and presence of mind in rescue operations, without caring for the grave risk to his life.
|Reference:||Notification No. 128-“Pres/2001 dated 15th August, 2001 published in Part 1 Section 1 Gazette of India dated 9th February, 2002.|