Awards for 223 Sqn


A total of 5 Awards are listed.
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Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Inder Jit Singh Boparai 7691 F(P)Unit : 223 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 86
Details :

Wing Commander Inder Jit Singh Boparai (7691) F (P) has been on operational fighter flying assignments throughout his service career of 21½ years in the Air Force. He has attained 'Fully Operational' status on all the MiG-21 variants and has to his credit over 2000 hrs flying on those types. An Instrument Rating Instructor and Fighter Combat Leader on type, he was a member of MiG-21 formation aerobatic team. It was due to his contribution in no small measure as a Flt Cdr that the Sqn was adjudged the Best Fighter Squadron of the year by Director of Air Staff Inspection for 4 consecutive years. It was also his timely report of K-5 missiles evaluation and flt trials highlighting its limitations that prevented an ineffective weapon being contracted for thereby saving valuable foreign exchange.

With his vast experience and background, ha was selected to Command the first Rakshak Squadron. He was assigned the dual task of raising a new fighter squadron and simultaneously inducting a new fighter aircraft into the Air Force. With tremendous enthusiasm and personal involvement, with extremely limited trained manpower, he not only overcame the initial teething troubles but took on additional task of taking over the group sets for the Base Repair Depot. It was his meticulous planning and foresight in utilising the aircraft that flying effort was built up in a phased manner with proper stagger. The Squadron has flown a total of over 4500 hrs in less than 3 years and considering the heavy constraints of lack of spares and high Aircraft On Ground state – this is a vary creditable achievement indeed.

In May 04, Wg Cdr IJS Boparai became the first pilot to land Rakshak aircraft at Leh, the highest operational airfield in the world, and again it was his personal involvement and guidance which helped in overcoming starting problems at this height. His suggestions have now been incorporated as a standard for all MiG-21s.

With over 500 hrs on type to his credit, in every phase of flying, Wg Cdr Boparai undertook the initial sorties himself, and utilising the aircraft potential to the full has today established the Rakshak as an effective weapon system capable of countering even F-16 type of threat with suitable tactics. Besides the progress of the Squadron, he has put up suggestions which have effectively enhanced operational effectiveness.

For his very high degree of professional competence and dedicated hard work which has resulted in the Rakshak fleet becoming a viable operational weapon system, for his total devotion to duty and his sustained contribution towards betterment of the service, the President is pleased to award Vayu Seva Medal to Wing Commander Inderjit Singh Boparai.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th April 1986 - No.36-Pres/86 dated 26th January 1986 

Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Suresh Chandra Mukul 12930 F(P)Unit : 223 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 92
Details :

Wg Cdr SC Mukul was posted as Commanding Officer of one of the squadrons of the Air Force on 27 Nov 89. He is an A-2 QFI, who has also done FCL and Staff College Courses. The task of this assignment was reequipping the squadron with MiG-29 aircraft and getting the squadron operational in the shortest possible time.

Disposal of earlier aircraft and associated equipment, setting up flight and technical complex in a new location were all done with a great sense of urgency. Newly acquired ac and ground equipment was inspected and taken over from (Soviet) Erection Team with limited man power available in a smooth manner.

Squadron commenced flying on MiG-29 ac in Apr 90 with a nucleus of only a few MiG-29 qualified pilots. New pilots with different backgrounds were progressed speedily through conversion and OST syllabus. It goes to his credit that the Sqn achieved Ops status by August 1990 with sufficient pilots fully ops to take on operational commitments without a single incident/accident.

His Squadron was also given the task of imparting Dissimilar Air Combat Training to the MiG-21 Sqns in the western sector. This training was imparted with all the seriousness and professional thoroughness to pilots of a number of Sqns one after the other. It is to the credit of Wg Cdr Mukul that these DACT camps were always completed on schedule. An interesting development was the regular weekly continuation of DACT missions on completion of DACT camps with the MiG21 Sqns of the neighboring bases; the TRS of the MiG-21s landing at this AF base was looked after by his Sqn technicians. These DACT Camps and the procedure of weekly DACT/Buddy missions has enhanced the Ops preparedness of fighter squadrons tremendously.

For the high standard of professionalism and dedication shown in safe and speedy induction of MiG-29 ac at Wing as well as for achieving Ops Status of the Sqn and efficient running of DACT Camps with MiG-21 squadrons, the President is pleased to award Vayu Seva Medal to Wg Cdr SC Mukul.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 11th April 1992 - No.29-Pres/92 dated 26th January 1992 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Flt Lt Gaurav Chibbar 22926 F(P)Unit : 223 Sqn  Award Date Announced 15 Aug 99
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Gaurav Chibber (22926-T) Flying (Pilot) was on the posted strength of a Fighter Squadron, AF, since 01 June 98. Before coming to this Squadron, he was a Fully Ops Pilot on the Jaguar aircraft with numerous qualifications; like Photo recce and EW. His transformation from a Strike Pilot to an Air Defence Pilot, flying a Russian aircraft for the first time, in such a short duration, is truly praiseworthy.

Flight Lieutenant Chibber was the youngest MiG-29 Pilot taking part in the Kargil Operations. He performed admirably in carrying out 29 missions which included Area CAP, Tied Escorts and CRC missions by day and night. As a young leader he led many of these missions ensuring the strike aircraft achieved their objectives unhampered by enemy air opposition. Despite having only 100 hrs on type he made noteworthy contribution towards the success of operations in this sector. In one mission he handled the aircraft radar systems optimally to search and acquire two enemy F-16 aircraft, warding off a possible threat, enabling our strike force to destroy their designated target.

Flight Lieutenant G Chibber had a very good rapport with the airmen and his warm and friendly nature had kept the morale of the men high. In this high pressure situation he had been an asset to the Squadron, admirably performing his duties. He had shown great keenness and involvement in all activities.

For this dedication to duty, perservance and professionalism beyond the call of duty, the Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Flight Lieutenant Gaurav Chibber, Posthumous.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Surat Singh 18563 F(P)Unit : 223 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 06
Details : Wing Commander Surat Singh (18563) Flying (Pilot) was commissioned into the fighter stream of Flying Branch on 06 Dec 1986. In the last 18 years he has been actively involved in the fighter operations in various capacities. During this period, he has held the important assignments of a Directing Staff at TACDE, Flight Commander of an Air Superiority Fighter (ASF) Squadron, DASI inspector, and is presently commanding a Mig-29 Sqn. He Is a graduate of the Australian Command and Staff Course. He has been commended by AOC-in-C twice. Wg Cdr Surat Singh took over the Command of frontline fighter Squadron on 29 Jan 2004. This being a Core Group Sqn, is always on higher state of readiness. On assuming command of the Sqn, his major task was to meet the Core Group requirements. This has been done exceedingly well, wherein all the requirements have been met both qualitatively and quantitatively. The meticulous planning and execution, on Operational and Maintenance front, has yielded rich dividends in the last year and a half. The Sqn participated in two International level 1AF exercises and performed exceedingly well. The detachment during Exercise 'SINDEX' was led by him personally. With his proactive approach and active involvement In all the Sqn activities, the Sqn achieved all assigned tasks with a clean Flight Safety record, The training programme conducted under his guidance ensured a high operational aircrew status. All the aircrew remained current in all the Operational roles. The major emphasis on Dissimilar Air Combat Training, Integrated training, Night Operations, and strengthening of the Air Defence team comprising the aircrew and the Fighter Controller has greatly increased the Operational potential of the Sqn as a Core Group Unit. With his leadership, foresight, professional planning, perseverance, and positive attitude, he was able to provide a new purpose and direction to the air warriors in the Sqn, who were motivated to achieve higher standards all the time. The Sqn was awarded the "Best Overall Operational Performance" trophy. For exceptional devotion to duty, The Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Surat Singh.
Reference: Gazette of India dated 18th March 2006 - No.30-Pres/2006 dated 26th January 2006 & AFD2006 Investiture  

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Lalit Kumar Chawla 19871 F(P)Unit : 223 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Lalit Kumar Chawla (19871) F (P) was commissioned into the Indian Air Force on 17 Dec 1988 as a Pilot in the Fighter stream. He has flown 3670 hours on various Fighter and Trainer aircraft without an accident or incident. He has held important assignments including Directing Staff at prestigious Flying Instructor's School and Flight Commander of a Fighter Squadron in Srinagar during "Op Parakram". He is an A-2 flying instructor, graduate of the DSSC and is presently commanding a Fighter Squadron since 13 Feb 2006. He was commended by AOC-in-C in Jan 2001.

His Squadron forms the Core Group of air defence aircraft of the Western Sector, which is always on higher state of readiness. On assuming command of the Squadron his major task was to meet the core group requirements. The training programme conducted under his guidance has ensured a high operational aircrew status. All the eligible aircrew have remained current in all the operational roles. The major emphasis has been on Dissimilar Air Combat Training, Integrated Training, Night Operations and strengthening of the Air Defence Team, comprising of the Aircrew and the Fighter Controllers. This has greatly increased the operational potential of the Squadron as a Core Group.

The Squadron has excelled in Air Force Fly-pasts and various Command and Air Force level exercises conducted during his tenure. The Squadron also carried out successful operations from Leh airfield in the month of Dec 06 in severe winter conditions and two detachments from Awantipur last year; which were personally led by him. With his dynamic leadership, foresight, professional planning and positive attitude, he has marshaled all the human and material resources placed under his command deftly and economically ensuring that the Sqn achieved its peace time commitments having flown 2915 sorties in an exemplary manner during the last one year. In Mar 2007 under his able guidance, the Squadron celebrated the Silver Jubilee Anniversary in an exceptional manner. The Squadron, entrusted with the responsibility of looking after the Officers' Mess in the airbase, has made substantial improvements in a very short period under his able leadership.

For exceptional devotion to duty Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Lalit Kumar Chawla.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 10th November 2008. No. 34-Pres/2008 dated 26th January 2008 

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