Awards for 106 Sqn


A total of 29 Awards are listed.
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Maha Vir Chakra
Sqn Ldr Jag Mohan Nath 3946 GD(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 26 Jan 63 Announced 26 Jan 63
Details : As Flight Commander of an Operational Squadron, Squadron Leader Jag Mohan Nath has fulfilled a number of hazardous operational tasks involving flying over difficult mountain terrain, both by day and by night, in adverse weather conditions and in complete disregard of his personal safety. He has displayed conspicuous gallantry, a very high sense of duty and a high degree of professional skill.
Reference: Gazette of India, 16th February 1963 - No. 15-Pres/63., dated 26th January, 1963 

Maha Vir Chakra
Sqn Ldr Jag Mohan Nath 3946 GD(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 01 Sep 65 Announced 01 Sep 65
Details : Bar to MVC During the Indo-Pak War 1965, Sqn Ldr Nath was again the Flight Commander with the Strategic Photo Reconnaissance Squadron flying the Canberra aircraft. He led his unit several times over the hostile territory to obtain vital information about the enemy. The unescorted missions, which were in the nature of reconnaissance, entailed flying long distances over the enemy territory and well-defended airfields and installations during day light. Sqn Ldr Nath was fully aware of the risk he was running on each of these missions. Still, he chose to undertake the risky missions himself. It was after great persuasion that he allowed his colleagues to do some risky assignments. The information gathered by him during his missions proved vitally important to Indian air effort. The missions enabled our Air Force to attack vital enemy targets and this adversely affected enemy's war effort. Sqn Ldr Nath was awarded Bar to Mahavir Chakra for displaying courage, determination and devotion to duty
Reference: Gazette of India , 12th February 1966 - No.9 - Pres/65 dated 1st January 1966 

Maha Vir Chakra
Wg Cdr Ramesh Sakharam Benegal 4220 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 17 Dec 71 Announced 18 Dec 71
Details : As the Officer Commanding of an Operational reconnaissance squadron [No.106 SR Squadron, Canberras] he has carried out a very large number of missions over enemy territory and has obtained vital information about enemy Air Force and other installations. These missions have entailed flying unarmed and unescorted vary deep into enemy territory and to heavily defended targets. The information brought back from these missions has facilitated the planning of Army, Air Force and Naval operations and has thus directly contributed to the attrition of the Pakistani war machine, It is further to the credit of Wing Commander Benegal that he has never returned from any of these innumerable missions without having achieved his object in full measure. While flying repeatedly deep into enemy territory in an unarmed aircraft he has displayed gallantry, devotion to duty and professional skill of the highest order.
Reference: Gazette of India , 12th February 1972 - No.20 - Pres/72 dated 20th January 1972 

Vir Chakra
Flt Lt Vinayak Bhiwaji Sawant 4401 GD(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 20 Oct 62 Announced 26 Jan 63
Details : Flight Lieutenant Vinayak Bhiwaji Sawant was employed on operational tasks which involved flying over difficult and mountainous terrain, both by day and by night. The aircraft had to be navigated accurately in the face of adverse weather conditions. Flight Lieutenant Sawant undertook these hazardous tasks cheerfully and displayed gallantry and a high degree of professional efficiency
Reference: Gazette of India , 16th February 1963 - No. 18-Pres/63., dated 26th January, 1963 

Vir Chakra
Flt Lt Gangadhar Ranganath Railkar 5928 GD(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 22 Sep 65 Announced 15 Aug 66
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Gangadhar Rangnath Railkar has been a navigator in a Photo Reconnaissance Squadron since 1962. During the September 1965, operations, he undertook several missions and obtained vital information about the enemy dispositions. He always volunteered for the most difficult sorties and flew several operational missions. The valuable information, which he brought by making reconnaissance flights contributed to a large extent towards our planning and successful execution of operations.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Gangadhar Rangnath Railkar displayed exemplary courage and professional skill of a high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 8th October 1966 - No.72 - Pres/66 dated 30th September 1966 

Vir Chakra
Flt Lt Gopal Krishna Garud 6327 GD(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 22 Sep 65 Announced 15 Aug 66
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Gopal Krishna Garud has been a navigator in a Photo Reconnaissance Squadron since 1962. Photo reconnaissance flights are fraught with danger as these have invariably to be flown unescorted in broad day light. During the September 1965, operations, he always volunteered for the most difficult missions and brought valuable information which contributed to a large extent towards the planning and successful execution of operations.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Gopal Krishna Garud displayed exemplary courage and professional skill of a high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 8th October 1966 - No.72 - Pres/66 dated 30th September 1966 

Vir Chakra
Flt Lt Govind Chandra Singh Rajwar 8103 F(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 17 Dec 71
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Govind Chandra Singh Rajwar, he undertook a large number of hazardous missions and completed them successfully. The information obtained on these missions contributed to a large extent towards our planning and successful execution of operations.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Govind Chandra Singh Rajwar displayed gallantry, professional skill and devotion to duty of a high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 29th July 1972 - No.92 - Pres/72 dated 18th July 1972 

Vir Chakra
Sqn Ldr Charanjit Singh 4823 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 21 Dec 71
Details : During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Squadron leader Charanjit Singh undertook a large number of missions over enemy territory and brought back very valuable information on enemy targets and dispositions which have greatly helped in the successful planning and execution of operations. With full knowledge of the dangers involved, he volunteered and undertook these missions cheerfully. In these missions, he penetrated deep into enemy territory fearlessly during day time.

Throughout, Squadron leader Charanjit Singh displayed gallantry, professional skill and devotion to duty of a high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 29th July 1972 - No.92 - Pres/72 dated 18th July 1972 

Vir Chakra
Flt Lt Mohinder Singh Sandhu 8101 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 30 Dec 71
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Mohinder Singh Sandhu flew a number of operational reconnaissance missions over enemy territory. On the 4th December, 1971, he was detailed for an air mission over Sargodha at night. He carried out this mission successfully.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Mohinder Singh Sandhu displayed gallantry, professional skill and devotion to duty of a high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 29th July 1972 - No.92 - Pres/72 dated 18th July 1972 

Vir Chakra
Flt Lt Nitin Gajanan Junnarkar 7477 F(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 72
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Nitin Gajanan Junnarkar flew a number of hazardous Photo Reconnaissance mission over enemy territory. He has always completed the task assigned to him to the full satisfaction. The information obtained by him on these missions has contributed to a large extent to the successful conduct of operations.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Nitin Gajanan Junnarkar displayed gallantry, professional skill and devotion to duty of a high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 29th July 1972 - No.92 - Pres/72 dated 18th July 1972 

Shaurya Chakra
Wg Cdr Alagaraja Perumal 17150 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 21 May 99 Announced 26 Jan 06
Details :

Wing Commander Alagaraja Perumal was tasked on a vital Photographic Reconnaissance mission on 21st May, 1999 near the Line of Control over Dras, Kargil and Batalik sectors with two MiG-29 aircraft as escorts.

During the mission, at about 0900 hours, after photographing Batalik sector, he experienced a violent jolt accompanied by uncontrolled yaw and roll. The escort aircraft reported bright flash along with debris flying off and smoke emanating from recce aircraft's starboard engine. The aircraft had been hit by a missile. Despite the grave, life threatening situation, Wing Commander Perumal maintained his cool and displaying exceptional skill and courage, he managed to exit the threat zone. One of the engines was completely lost and the aircraft had suffered severe damage. Radio reception was garbled and intermittent, he could not hear the extent of damage caused by missile hit. The aircraft was behaving abnormally by yawing and rolling violently. Even in this dangerous situation, Wing Commander Perumal decided not to abandon the aircraft but retrieve the valuable equipment and above all the precious “mission photographs” on board. He took a daring decision of recovering crippled aircraft to the nearest airfield at Srinagar. He controlled the aircraft and kept in his cool inspite of the requirement of continuous descent to maintain speed over the hilly terrain. He displayed exceptional courage, determination and flying skill in controlling a crippled asymmetric powered aircraft for 45 minutes before executing a landing at Srinagar.

Wing Commander Alagaraja Perumal displayed gallantry and extraordinary professional courage in recovering damaged aircraft in total disregard to his personal safety.

Reference: Notification No. 36-Pres/2006 dated 26th January, 2006 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 18th March, 2006. 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Flt Lt Ramachandra Shenoy Sudhakaran 4780 GD(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 63
Details : Flight Lieutenant Ramchandra Shenoy Sudhakaran has been employed in a strategic reconnaissance squadron since June 1956. This squadron was assigned the task of surveying certain mountainous regions under hazardous conditions. Flight Lieutenant Sudhakaran played a leading role in achieving the aerial survey. He was undaunted by the risks involved in flying over forward areas in NEFA and J & K . his skill in navigation and aerial photography ahs bee of a high order and the data collected by him proved very useful. Flight Lieutenant Sudhakaran has displayed commendable courage and devotion to duty.
Reference: Gazette of India 26th January 1963 - No. 10-Pres/63 dated 26th January, 1963 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Maharaj Krishan Khanna 4360 GD(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 67
Details :

Squadron Leader Maharaj Krishan Khanna has been a pilot in a squadron since 1959. Since then, he has given a creditable account of his professional ability and has always successfully carried out the tasks assigned to him. He has always volunteered for difficult sorties which proved extremely useful for the Air Force.

Throughout, Squadron Leader Maharaj Krishan Khanna displayed professional skill and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 1st April, 1967 - No.24-Pres/67 dated 26th January 1967  

Vayu Sena Medal
Flt Lt Hariman Singh Soorma 5000 GD(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 67
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Hariman Singh Soorma has been a pilot in a Squadron since October 1962. He has undertaken a number of hazardous operational mission and successfully carried out the tasks assigned to him. Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Hariman Singh Soorma displayed courage and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 1st April, 1967 - No.24-Pres/67 dated 26th January 1967  

Vayu Sena Medal
Flt Lt Gurbaksh Rai Sahni 5457 GD(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 67
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Gurbakash Rai Sahni has been a navigator in a Squadron since August 1963. He has always volunteered for difficult missions and has successfully carried out the tasks assigned to him. Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Gurbakash Rai Sahni displayed courage and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 1st April, 1967 - No.24-Pres/67 dated 26th January 1967  

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Flt Lt Chandrakant Nijanand Bal 7401 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 71
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Chandrakant Nijanand Bal has been serving with an operational Squadron since April 1967. He has flown a total of 1,710 hours. On 22nd January 1970, while returning from a mission at 40,000 ft. he observed an excessive voltage reading and immediately isolated the battery. This was followed by a sudden electrical flash and total electrical failure. He was forced to descend and divert to another airfield, flying with the help of a torch and an emergency light and steering with the help of a small emergency compass. During this descent both engines flamed out once and the starboard engine flamed out thrice at low altitude. Relighting of the engines was successful each time only because he had conserved the battery. He ensured a touchdown at the correct speed and at the beginning of the runway without any damage to the aircraft. By his presence of mind and skilful handling of the situation, he not only saved a valuable aircraft, but also the lives of the crew.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Chandrakant Nijanand Bal displayed professional skill and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 4th September 1971 - No.53 - Pres/71 dated 26th January 1971 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Billore Satyanarayana Raju 5724 ADMUnit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 72
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Squadron Leader Billore Satyanarayana Raju was serving as Officerin-Charge, Photo Section of an Operational Squadron. The photo section, under his personal supervision, produced over 50 000 prints of vital reconnaissance missions maintaining highest quality control. On the 13th December, 1971, aerial photographs were taken of all approaches to Dacca city, and six thousand two hundred prints with twenty enlargements were delivered the next morning. The information collected through these prints was of immense value to our ground forces in planning their operations.

Throughout, Squadron Leader Billore Satyanarayana Raju displayed leadership, professional skill and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 7th October 1972 - No.108 - Pres/72 dated 23rd September 1972 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Flt Lt Prashant Satyadeo Dikshit 7487 F(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 72
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Prashant Satyadeo Dikshit was serving with a Bomber Squadron. He flew a number of operational reconnaissance missions covering vital targets like Chitagong, Cox Bazaar, Sylhet and Dacca. On the 4th December, 1971, he volunteered for night mission over Sargodha and carried it out successfully.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Prashant Satyadeo Dikshit displayed courage, professional skill and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 7th October 1972 - No.108 - Pres/72 dated 23rd September 1972 

Vayu Sena Medal
Flt Lt Philip George 9603 AE(M)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 72
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Philip George was serving as Engineering Officer of a Squadron. Throughout the operations, the Unit maintained 100% serviceability. All the aircraft of the Unit operated from various airfields during day and night on operational reconnaissance missions. This achievement was largely due to untiring efforts of Flight Lieutenant Philip George. His qualities of leadership inspired his men to work cheerfully round the clock.

Throughout, Flight Lieutenant Philip George displayed leadership, professional skill and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 7th October 1972 - No.108 - Pres/72 dated 23rd September 1972 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sgt Satish Kumar Soni 228889 ORUnit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 72
Details :

During the operations against Pakistan in December, 1971, Sergeant Satish Kumar Soni was serving with an operational Squadron in the Eastern Sector. He was airlifted to Tezpur and Gauhati for servicing of aircraft needed for urgent reconnaissance commitments. On both the occasions he, by working day and night, serviced the aircraft at these locations, and thus enabled all the aircraft to complete the missions successfully.

Throughout, Sergeant Satish Kumar Soni displayed courage, professional skill and devotion to duty.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 7th October 1972 - No.108 - Pres/72 dated 23rd September 1972 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Joseph Thomas 6496 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 72
Details :

Squadron Leader Joseph Thomas has been a pilot in the Indian Air Force for ten years.

This officer served in a reconnaissance squadron for four years. In this time he flew 230 sorties of aerial survey, which required very accurate planning and execution. Flying over rugged, mountainous terrain using inaccurate maps he achieved results of a very high standard. On two occasions when his aircraft was crippled by mechanical failures he brought back the disabled aircraft safely to base.

For his professional acumen, presence of mind and unflinching devotion to duty, Squadron Leader Thomas is awarded the Vayu Sena Medal.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 12th May 1973 - No.28 - Pres/73 dated 26th January 1972 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Dushyant Singh 5048 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 74
Details :

Squadron Leader Dushyant Singh was posted to an operational unit on 1st May, 1972. On the 27th June, 1972, he was appointed Project Co-ordinator of Exercise Storm Exchange, which involved carrying out weather reconnaissance in Indian SubContinent in the Royal Air Force Canberra PR 719 on loan to India. In record time he organised personnel attached from various units into a homogenous team and carried out independent operations from a number of airfields without a set pattern of spare parts backing. In this unknown field of weather research he was able to successfully complete all the assigned sorties in collaboration with civilian Scientists, against unpredictable weather conditions, unserviceabiliy of the aircraft involving one engine change and one inspection and he achieved a task output of 165 hours on a single aircraft in less than three months. He has flown over 2891 accident free hours on Canberra aircraft.

Throughout, Squadron Leader Dushyant Singh displayed courage, professional skill and devotion to duty in the best traditions of the Air Force.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 6th July 1974 - No.85 - Pres/74 dated 26th January 1974 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
MWO Arun Kumar Choudhury 36229 ORUnit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 74
Details :

Master Warrant Officer Arun Kumar Choudhury was enrolled in the Indian Air Force in 1943 and since 1950 he has been an effective aircrew. He has to his credit more than 6000 hours of flying and out of which over 2000 hours are on operational flying. He is also qualified 2nd Pilot on Dakota aircraft and his services were extensively made use of during the 1962 operations. During November and December, 1962, he had flown many day and night operational missions, over the battle areas and had done 224 hours of operational flying. He had also taken part in the Goa Operations and he was a member of the crew of the aircraft that landed first at DIU (GOA). He was commended by the Chief of the Air Staff in 1964 for his exceptional devotion to duty. By his excellent organising ability, high degree of professional knowledge and exceptional devotion to duty, Master Warrant Officer Choudhury has carried out his task relentlessly; and it is largely due to his intelligent and dedicated work that his unit had achieved 100% categorisation amongst the Signallers.

Throughout, Master Warrant Officer Arun Kumar Choudhury displayed professional skill and exceptional devotion to duty in the best traditions of the Air Force.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 6th July 1974 - No.85 - Pres/74 dated 26th January 1974 

Bar to Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Jagbir Singh Rai 6507 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 75
Details :

Squadron Leader Jagbir Singh Rai was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in May, 1962. He was posted to a Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron as a Flight Commander in June, 1973. As a Flight Commander, Squadron Leader Rai carried out the training and supervision of his flight with great zeal and initiative and maintained a high categorization state of aircrew and a very high standard of flight safety. Due to his exceptional organising ability and guidance, his Flight, flew 1,810 hours during the year 1973-74 which is a record of this Squadron ever since its formation. He made efforts to achieve maximum aerial survey task output and has set up a record of surveying 30,000 square miles by Dakota Flight.

Throughout, Squadron Leader Jagbir Singh Rai, displayed exceptional organising ability, professional skill and high sense of devotion to duty in keeping with the best traditions of the Indian Air Force.

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

Vayu Sena Medal
Flt Lt Raghbir Singh Cheema 10926 F(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 76
Details : Flight Lieutenant Raghbir Singh Cheema was posted to a Bomber Squadron in December, 1972. He has flown over 1350 hours. Most of the flying was undertaken from far flung bases and over difficult terrain. Within a period of three months in 1974. he covered most of the year's allotted task of the Squadron by putting in long hours of flying. Flight Lieutenant Raghbir Singh Cheema has throughout displayed professional skill, determination and devotion to duty of a high order.
Reference: Gazette of India dated 22nd January 1977 - No.5- Pres/77 dated 26th January 1976 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Shyam Sunder Singh Chauhan 8780 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 82
Details :

Wing Commander Shyam Sundar Singh Chauhan was commissioned in the Indian Air Force on 2nd August, 1964. A keen and dedicated flier, he has flown over 2700 accident­free hours as Captain. During the period November, 1980 to January, 1981, he played a keen role in planning and execution of sensitive border survey tasks. Flying with tenacity and precision over rugged mountainous terrain, he brought back outstanding results. The information has been of great strategic value in updating our maps and has increased our knowledge of these inaccessible regions.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 22nd January 1983 - No.1-Pres/83 dated 26th January 1982 

Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Dilip Chotu Sambare 7431 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 85
Details :

Wing Commander Dilip Chhotu Sambhare successfully commanded the Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron of the Indian Air Force from Nov 81 to Jun 84. During this tenure, he demonstrated flying skill of a very high order on Canberra aircraft and a correspondingly high level of airmanship, professional competence and specialist knowledge. Under his command, all survey and photographic tasks assigned to the Squadron were successfully completed. Also, the Squadron achieved a commendable accident­free record during the period under conditions of intensive flying and launching of operations from various bases spread far and wide in India.

Shortage of resources in men and material during his tenure called for additional and concerted effort oh the part of the Squadron to clear the backlog of priority survey tasks. This was made possible not only by his ability to inspire officers and airmen under his command to put in long hours of hard work, but also by his astute management of limited resources.

He has himself flown many hazardous photo reconnaissance missions successfully, in the face of danger to himself and the aircraft, and made available valuable information of national and strategic importance. His understanding of the urgency of these tasks was invariably sound, and he produced reliable results on every occasion in the critical time frame given to him.

For his devotion to duty, dedication to the Service and a high sense of responsibility in the highest traditions of the Indian Air Force, the President is pleased to award Vayu Seva Medal to Wing Commander Dilip Chhotu Sambhare.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Sqn Ldr Rajender Khurana 13377 F(P)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 89
Details :

Squadron Leader Rajendra Khurana (13377) Flying (Pilot) was commissioned in the Air Force on 02 Jun 75 and is on the posted strength of a Strategic Reconnaissance Squadron since 25 Nov 85.

He has 3150 hours of total flying to his credit of which 1850 hrs are operational flying on Canberra aircraft. He is functioning as the Flight Commander of Canberra Flight. During Aug 87, when there were certain indications of enemy intentions in Siachen area, he was called upon to plan and execute Photo reconnaissance mission over the area. Using his thorough knowledge in the field of Photo Reconnaissance operations combined with past experience of coordinating missions involving different types of aircraft, Sqn Ldr Khurana planned Photo Reconnaissance missions with great zeal and dedication. Of the 22 sorties flown for the purpose of planning and execution of these missions, two were flown over the operational area.

The information obtained from these missions was so valuable for our Army element in the field and at Headquarters that it was widely appreciated by the senior Army and Air Force Commanders directly involved with Siachen Operations.

For his exceptional and exemplary professional standards and fearless flying in the face of enemy, the President is pleased to award Vayu Sena Medal to Squadron Leader Rajendra Khurana.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 22nd April 1988 - No.39-Pres/89 dated 26th January 1989 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg Cdr Uday Kant Jha 20568 F(N)Unit : 106 Sqn  Award Date 21 May 99 Announced 26 Jan 06
Details : Wing Commander Uday Kant Jha (20568) Flying (Navigator) was on the posted strength of a Flight Reconnaissance Squadron since 31 Dec 1997. On 21 May 1999, he was tasked to undertake a vital Photo Reconnaissance mission in Dras, Batalik and Kargll sectors near the Line of Control as navigator of the aircraft. During the mission, at about 0900 hrs, after photographing Batalik sector, aircraft experienced violent jolt accompanied by yaw and roll. The escort aircraft reported bright flash along wlth debris flying off and smoke emanating from the reccee aircraft's starboard engine. The aircraft had been hit by a missile. The officer immediately came back to navigator ejection seat and promptly assisted the pilot in emergency actions. Suspecting missile attack, he helped the pilot to take evasive actions from further missile attacks and advised the pilot to steer course to divert to Srinagar. The grave and life threatening situation did not deter the officer from carrying out his professional duty. Despite very restricted visibility from ejection seat of the aircraft and difficult terrain to map read, he assisted the pilot in giving accurate position and ensured that the aircraft was on right track to Srinagar. Wg Cdr Jha displayed exceptional courage and professionalism in assisting the pilot to reach Srinagar airfield. Wg Cdr Jha. who Is highly qualified on Photo Reconnaissance role was very confident about the photographs taken and knew that it will be very useful for Operations. Disregarding his. personal safety, maintaining a level head without panic, he assisted the pilot to retrieve the aircraft alongwith the mission photographs, which proved invaluable during Operation Vijay. He was a rare navigator in the history of Indian Military aviation who has survived a missile hit. For this act of exceptional courage and professionalism, the Hon'ble President) is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Wing Commander Uday Kant Jha.
Reference: Gazette of India dated 18th March 2006 - No.30-Pres/2006 dated 26th January 2006 & AFD2006 Investiture  

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