|Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)|
|Sqn Ldr||Gurjot Singh Bhullar 22901 F(P)||Unit : 130 SU||Award Date 04 Aug 05||Announced|
|Details :|| |
Squadron Leader Gurjot Singh Bhullar (22901) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of an operational Mi-8 Helicopter Unit of the Air Force since 28 Oct 02.
Sqn Ldr Bhullar was deployed at Belgaum for undertaking flood relief operations in Karnataka. On 04 Aug 05, as the captain of a Mi-8 helicopter, he was tasked to rescue survivors from a village near Ankli town. The survivors were stranded on a slanting tiled rooftop, surrounded on all sides by tall trees and deep flood water. TV antennae and other obstructions of built up area restricted the available airspace to mere two square meters for winching operations that demanded error free precision flying. Analysing the gravity of the situation, he decided to winch the survivors one-by-one. While winching up the first survivor, portion of the roof collapsed and the survivor, on the winch cable slipped and hung precariously in the gap therein. Instead of abandoning the effort, Sqn Ldr Bhullar continued with rescue displaying steady composure and high professional skill. He maintained steady hover above the broken roof for a safe rescue from a height of about 35 meters. Similarly the remaining two survivors were also winched up to safety one-by-one. Pilot's courage was again put to test when the rescue volunteer slipped and the winch cable got entangled in the antennae. This was a potentially dangerous situation, but Sqn Ldr Bhullar, under extreme adversities of weather and fading light close to sunset, remained composed in controlling the helicopter while a crew member disentangled the cable to eventually accomplish a successful winching operation.
Sqn Ldr Bhullar displayed exceptional courage in effecting a successful rescue despite hazards and challenging conditions. Thereafter displaying indefatigable spirit, grit and determination, he continued with the flood relief operations and rescued 170 survivors in the next ten days that included 23 live winching operations.
For this act of exceptional courage, the Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Squadron Leader Gurjot Singh Bhullar.
|Reference:||Gazette of India dated 11th November 2006. - No.104-Pres/2006 dated 15th August 2006|