Awards for 129 HU


A total of 10 Awards are listed.
Vir Chakra : 1 | Vayu Sena Medal : 2 | Vishist Seva Medal : 1 | Mention in Despatches : 6 |
Vir Chakra
Wg Cdr Anil Kumar Sinha 16074 F(P)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date 28 May 99 Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :

Wing Commander Anil Kumar Sinha (16074) F(P), has been the Commanding Officer of a Mi-17 helicopter unit since 27th May 1997.

On 28th May, 1999, Wing Commander Sinha was the leader of a four aircraft formation, which was tasked to fly a live air to ground rocket attack, on feature 5140 located on the Tololing ridge. The enemy, located on this ridge, was bringing down accurate fire on the highway linking Srinagar with Leh.

The enemy was armed with shoulder fired Stinger air to surface missiles and were firing these missiles at the formation. Two of the missiles missed Wing Commander Sinha’s helicopter and was seen in a video recording. It was during this attack that the number three aircraft of the formation was shot down, killing all four crew members. The rocket attack was successful and inflicted heavy casualties on the enemy.

The leadership and sense of commitment, displayed by the officer in the face of danger to himself and his aircraft was in the best traditions of the Indian Air Force.

Reference: Gazette of India , 26th January 2000 - No.18 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Sunil Kaura 18598 F(P)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 98
Details :

Squadron Leader Kaura (18598) F (P) is on the posted strength of 129 Helicopter Unit with effect from 01 May 95. He is holding current CAT/IR 'B' Green on Mi-17 helicopter. His flying experience includes operations in Srinagar, North East, SHBO, air to ground rocketry and bombing, air maintenance and VVIP flying. His total service flying is 2731 hours.

In Aug 96, incessant rains and continuous bad weather resulted in a large number of serious casualties amongst the stranded pilgrims of Amarnath Yatra. Squadron Leader Kaura, was made the Task Force Commander of relief operations and four Mi-17s were placed under his command.

On 25 Aug 96, Squadron Leader S Kaura got airborne in marginal weather for Panchtarni, situated at a height of 12,000', and rescued the first batch of 14 serious causalities, for whom this sortie made all the difference between life and death. Flying in marginal weather conditions and inhospitable terrain, Sqn Ldr S Kaura got airborne immediately for another rescue mission. In a short period of two days he flew a total of 10 missions, rescuing 97 casualties besides air lifting 46 stranded pilgrims and 13 dead bodies.

Undaunted by the vagaries of weather and magnitude of the task, he displayed extreme professionalism, maturity and leadership qualities in planning, co-ordinating and conducting the massive relief operation which went, beyond the normal call of duty. With the attention of the whole nation focused on the Amarnath Yatra tragedy, Sqn Ldr S Kaura led his team of officers and men from the front, in successfully accomplishing the challenging and uphill task of rescuing the pilgrims winning unqualified praise for the IAF from one and all.

For this display of exceptional professional skill and devotion to duty, the President is pleased to award "Vayu Sena Medal" to Squadron Leader Sunil Kaura.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 14th March 1998 - No.29-Pres/98 dated 26th January 1998 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Sqn Ldr Narender Singh Verma 18298 F(P)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :

Squadron Leader Narender Singh Verma (18298-S) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of a Helicopter Unit. On 28 May 99 Sqn Ldr NS Verma was detailed to fly as Captain of No 2 helicopter in a four helicopter formation on a live air to ground rocket firing mission.

The target Point 5140 was located on the Tololing ridge in Dras sub sector at 16,500 feet. Enemy positions to be attacked were entrenched in well-concealed bunkers thereby making target acquisition difficult. The target area was heavily defended as the enemy had deployed Stinger Missiles and 37 mm Anti Aircraft Guns in the sector. These weapons posed a grave threat to the slow moving helicopter which was as such operating at the extreme limits of its performance envelope. For the air strike to be effective the helicopter perforce had to fly close to the target whereby it came well within the effective range of the Stinger Missiles. During the attack Sqn Ldr NS Verma's aircraft was fired upon by missiles. Despite enemy fire Sqn Ldr Verma remained undeterred and in the best traditions of the IAF displayed exceptional courage by pressing on with the attack thereby successfully achieving his mission.

For this act of exceptional courage the Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Squadron Leader Narender Singh Verma.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 11th March 2000 - No.27-Pres/2000 dated 15th August 2000 

Vishist Seva Medal
Sqn Ldr Tushar Gunvantrai Desai 17665 AE(L)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date 26 Jan 95 Announced 26 Jan 95
Details :

Squadron Leader Tushar G Desai was commissioned on 30 August 1984. He has been looking after the maintenance and servicing of Mi-8 helicopters and is the Senior Technical Officer of the unit.

It was his personal involvement in detailed planning that all the ten aircraft (ac) of the unit were made serviceable when the unit moved from Air Force Station Sulur to Air Force Station Jamnagar. This feat was once again repeated at Air Force Station Jamnagar, when under his supervision hundredpercent serviceability was achieved during more difficult times when the spares were not coming so easily.

The officer carried out a modification to the rocket sight camera of Mi-8 ac due to which the film runs even after the trigger is released and the impact point of rocket is thus filmed. This has helped tremendously in analysing the firing techniques of pilots and improvement in operational efficiency.

During an exercise, one Mi-8 helicopter of the unit required a change of the cooler fan assembly at Goa. Normally, both the engines have to be removed to carry out this change. Because of non-availability of specific ground equipment and to avoid further delay, it was decided to do it without removing the engine. Special tools were fabricated by Sqn Ldr Desai at the Naval workshop. The task was completed in the shortest possible time inspite of the fact that the unit was not on an Air Force base.

One helicopter of the unit had carried out a single engine landing at Rajkot airfield. To retrieve the ac it was decided to dismantle it and bring it by road. Under the supervision and guidance of Sqn Ldr Desai, the entire aircraft was dismantled and loaded on specially prepared trailers within three days. Personal liaison and interaction with the civil authorities by the officer resulted in the Post and Telegraphs Department and Gujarat Electricity Board Department detailing teams with special insulated T-bars to raise the high tension cables and telephone wires all along the route till Jamnagar. Thus, the task was achieved well ahead of time, with limited resources and minimal expenditure.

For distinguished service of high order the President is pleased to award 'Vishisht Seva Medal' to Sqn Ldr Tushar Gunvantrai Desai.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1995 Number: 

Mention in Despatches
Sqn Ldr Arvind Sharadchandra Pandey 19557 F(P)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :
Citation Not Available
Reference: Gazette of India No.28 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

Mention in Despatches
Flt Lt Shakul Tyagi 22533 F(P)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :
Citation Not Available
Reference: Gazette of India No.28 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

Mention in Despatches
Flt Lt Vivek Kamthan 22839 F(P)Unit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :
Citation Not Available
Reference: Gazette of India No.28 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

Mention in Despatches
JWO Satinder Singh 657273 ORUnit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :
Citation Not Available
Reference: Gazette of India No.28 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

Mention in Despatches
Sgt Surinder Singh 667911 ORUnit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :
Citation Not Available
Reference: Gazette of India No.28 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

Mention in Despatches
Sgt Virendra Kumar Mishra 678505 ORUnit : No.129 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :
Citation Not Available
Reference: Gazette of India No.28 - Pres/2000 dated 11th March 2000 

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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