Vayu Sena Medal Awardee List for the 8 Sqn

A total of 4 Awards are listed.
Vayu Sena Medal : 4 |
Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Madhukar Shantaram Jatar 4793 F(P)Unit : No.8 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 75
Details :

Wing Commander Madhukar Shantaram Jatar was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in November, 1954. He has been commanding a front line strike Squadron since March, 1972. His devotion to work has led to successful accomplishment of all tasks assigned to him well in time under difficult and trying conditions. A flier of exceptional merit, Wing Commander Jatar stands out as an officer worthy of emulation, who brought to bear his experience in all his work which has led to high operational efficiency of the squadron.

Throughout, Wing Commander Madhukar Shantaram Jatar displayed courage, professional skill and exceptional devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 21st February 1975 - No.16 - Pres/75 dated 26th January 1975 

Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Vasudevan Vatsalan Nair 7693 F(P)Unit : No.8 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 85
Details :

Wing Commander Vasudevan Vatsalan Nair is the Commanding Officer of a frontline Fighter Squadron.

Wing Commander Nair has always displayed leadership of high order, organizational ability, ingenuity, dedication and devotion to duty. Under his able leadership and guidance the Squadron won many laurels bringing repute to the Wing and to the Command. Under his command, the Squadron maintained a safe environment, carried out 5481 hours of accident-free flying notwithstanding severe and unpredictable weather conditions and extended working hours. In the very first year of his command, the Squadron was rated the Best Categorised Squadron (Supersonics) and won the IAF Instrument Rating Trophy. With his guidance in 1983-84, the Squadron won the prestigious and coveted IAF Flight Safety Trophy for being the Best Supersonic Squadron of the Year. These commendable achievements are attributable to ingenuity, hard work, dedication and exemplary leadership of Wg Cdr Nair.

The success of the ceremony of Colour Presentation to the Squadron on 05 Mar 84 was the result of Wg Cdr Nair's administrative excellence, his meticulous planning, hard work and personal involvement coupled with organizational ability under trying circumstances.

A fighter pilot to the core, Wg Cdr Nair has to his credit 2670 hours of supersonic jet flying.

For his outstanding leadership, unflagging zeal, absolute devotion to duty, unflinching loyalty and professionalism, the President is pleased to award Vayu Seva Medal to Wing Commander Vasudevan Vatsalan Nair.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 6th April 1985 - No.29-Pres/85 dated 26th January 1985 

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Sqn Ldr Chandan Sharda 21026 F(P)Unit : No.8 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 00
Details :

Squadron Leader Chandan Sharda (21026) Flying (Pilot) was authorised to fly an air test sortie on 04 Aug 98 on fighter aircraft. During the descent from 11 Km at 6.5 Km he experienced a loud bang and ducked down instinctively. Soon he realised that the right side upper bubble of the canopy had shattered and he had been hit by a chunk on Perspex on his head. He quickly throttled back to idling rpm and descended to 2 Km with airbrakes out, simultaneously dropping speed to 400 Km/h IAS. During the descent he realised that his visor had broken free, there was blood on his shoulder and blood splattered on the rear view mirror which had also been shattered. He had suffered deep cuts on his cheek and forehead and the bleeding was obscuring his vision. Due to the high noise level in the cockpit, R/T was ineffective, necessitating a U/S R/T recovery. To obviate further injury from loose corners of the shattered canopy he attempted to jettison it, which failed to lift free from the railing. During the base leg turn the canopy finally lifted free and a safe landing was made.

Squadron Leader C Sharda has displayed a high degree of courage and acted gallantly with a composed frame of mind even in an injured state, thereby saving a valuable aircraft.

For devotion to duty in recovering the aircraft in a difficult situation, the Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Squadron Leader Chandan Sharda.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 1st July 2000 - No.85-Pres/2000 dated 26th January 2000 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg Cdr Joseph Suares 21209 F(P)Unit : No.8 Squadron  Award Date 30 Nov 04 Announced 26 Jan 06
Details : Wing Commander Joseph Suares (21209) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of a premier fighter Squadron since 21 May 2001 and Is presently the Flight Commander. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor and has 1950 hours of total service flying.On 30 Nov 2004, while operating Air to Ground firing from Tezpur, Wg Cdr Suares was airborne for a range dual check sortie over Dulang Mukh range, with a trainee pilot. While leaving range, the aircraft experienced a sudden total electrical failure. Total electrical failure leads to immediate failure of all communications equipment, vital aircraft instrument as well as navigation equipment. The control system in pitch channel also becomes ineffective making manoeuvering of aircraft difficult. Wing Commander Joseph Suares promptly and correctly assessed the gravity of the situation and decided to recover the aircraft at Jorhat, the closest diversion. Enroute to Jorhat he correctly assessed the weather to be marginal and decided to recover at Tezpur. The multiple . unserviceabilities coupled with tho inclement weather made the task much more difficult for the pilot to land the Mig-21 aircraft. For lowering of undercarriage, Wg Cdr Suares had to gesticulate and shout to the trainee to lower the nose wheel on emergency since it can only be done from front cockpit. He lowered the main wheels himself using the emergency system. He then executed a safe flapless approach and landing. Even without , the tail chute and the anti skid system he safely stopped the aircraft without blocking the runway. Executing recovery of aircraft under these circumstances was a daunting task requiring extreme courage and determination. Any error could prove fatal. The pilot though had the option to eject under such marginal conditions, decided to save the aircraft against heavy odds.Wg Cdr Suares remained calm, composed and was situationally alive to the events while handling an adverse and completely unfamiliar situation. His professional acumen, maturity, and situational awareness in handling an unprecedented and unfamiliar situation made the crucial difference between a safe recovery and an accident.For displaying exceptional courage In handling of a critical emergency, the Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Wing Commander Joseph Suares.
Reference: Gazette of India dated 18th March 2006 - No.30-Pres/2006 dated 26th January 2006 & AFD2006 Investiture  

The Awards Database presented here was made possible by the kind generosity of Air Marshal Bharat Kumar, author of Courage & Devotion to Duty : A Chronicle of IAF's Honours and Awards (1932-2008). Air Marshal Bharat Kumar had very graciously given permission to reproduce the citations from the book on this website.
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Note: All the data available here is publicly available in the Gazette of India, published by the Indian Government, or from public domain sources, press releases about Awards and Right-To-Information (RTI) Requests. Additionally data shared by veterans is added to the page with permission. No data with respect to serving officers below the rank of AVM is displayed. Information in Gazette of India and Award citations and photographs as released by the Indian Air Force are the only details displayed.