|Sqn Ldr||Raj Shekhar Mehta 17212 ADM||Unit : 11 Wing||Award Date 20 Sep 93||Announced 26 Jan 95|
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Squadron Leader Raj Shekhar Mehta was commissioned in Administration branch of IAF on 28 May 1983. He is Deputy Chief Administration Officer at Air Force Station Tezpur.
On 09 September 1993, a herd of wild elephants entered the camp of Air Force Station Tezpur and lodged themselves in dense forest on the Southern Side of the airfield, close to the runway. Attempts to chase them out of the camp by helicopters were futile as the dense forest not only provided them cover but made it nearly impossible to locate their position. The elephants caused an extensive damage to the communication and electric cables, airfield lightening and security fence. Since the elephants were very close to the runway, the flying was adversely affected. On 20th September 1993, it was decided to drive them by organizing a beat. Squadron Leader Mehta, then Station Security officer was assigned the task. A group of 35 men was assigned to him for this job. The group armed with rifles and drums entered the dense forests from Eastern side at around 0930 hours. By 1130 hours, it had combed Â¾ of the jungle and chased the herd to one side. Squadron Leader Mehta led his men, encouraging them constantly during the entire operation. At around 1130 hrs, he was suddenly attacked by an elephant and thrown on the ground. Despite the shock, Squadron Leader Mehta retained his cool and dragged himself away from the direction in which the same elephant was attacking him. In the struggle that ensured, his left thigh was stamped and crushed by the elephant before it moved away from him. Even though seriously injured, he crawled to a distance of nearly 20 feet, picked up his portophone and guided the beat party to chase the herd out. Only on completion of the task, he called up the party for his own rescue. Squadron Leader Raj Shekhar Mehta after the first aid was rushed to the local Base hospital and later shifted to the Eastern Command Hospital at Calcutta for major surgery.
Squadron Leader Raj Shekhar Mehta, thus, displayed courage, determination, initiative and leadership qualities of exceptionally high order. Authority: Notification No. 92-Pres/95 dated 26th January, 1995 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 11th March 1995.
|Reference:||Gazette of India , 11th March 1995 - No.92 - Pres/95 dated 26th January 1995|
|Sqn Ldr||Tony Paul Nanda 17697 F(P)||Unit : 132 FAC Flight||Award Date 15 Sep 94||Announced 15 Aug 95|
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Squadron Leader Tony Paul Nanda is one of the posted strength of a Chetak/Cheetah Helicopter Flight, Air Force, Since 17 January 94.
On 15th September 94, he was detailed to undertake a causality evacuation mission in a Chetak helicopter from Gota village in Riasi district of J&K state. Being aware that the casualties were hit by bullets fired by Anti National Elements, he took due precautions in approaching and landing at the helipad located at a height of 6000' amsl.
He loaded the two causalities quickly and occupied the Pilot seat. The instant the rotors were engaged, the helicopter was fired away from the hill and was hit. One bullet gazed Squadron Leader Tony Paul Nanda's head. Bleeding profusely and in a dazed condition, he gathered his wits and decided that the best course of action was to get airborne.
He took off amidst a spray of bullets and selected the most suitable escape route. Even in the face of great danger, the safety of his helicopter and passengers was paramount to him. Despite his own injury, instead of landing at a nearest airfield he insisted that the aircraft be flown to Jammu, so that the causalities could reach the civil hospital in time. The sheer professionalism, clarity of thought and exceptional courage displayed by Squadron Leader T P Nanda under such dangerous circumstances is in keeping with the highest traditions of the Air Force.
Squadron Leader Tony Paul Nanda, thus, displayed courage, determination, and dedication beyond the call of the duty with utter disregard to his personal safety.
|Reference:||Notification No. 182-Pres/95 dated 15th August, 1995 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 7th October, 1995|