Wing Commander Yashpal Singh Dhariwal (22171) Flying (Pilot) was commissioned as a fighter pilot on 19 Dec 92. He has 1300 hours of flying experience on fighters and 1650 hours of Remotely Piloted Aircraft. He is Qualified Internal Pilot Instructor and also the command examiner for Mission Commander / Internal Pilot in SWAC. Presently he is commanding a Remotely Piloted Aircraft (RPA) Squadron at frontline airbase since 20 Apr 09. On 23 Feb 11, he was authorised to fly a circuit and landing sortie as Mission Commander and Internal Pilot Instructor on Heron RPA. The take off was uneventful, during the first circuit while turning from downwind to base leg, he noticed engine RPM reducing below flight idle limits along with engine oil pressure reducing at a faster rate. This was followed by engine cut warning coming on, sensing the gravity of the situation he took charge of the situation, maintaining cool and calm composure, he announced the emergency on intercom to External Pilot and continued to provide all necessary flight parameters towards safe recovery of the aircraft. His pro-activeness, concise transmission and assertiveness helped in safe recovery of Heron RPA with a failed engine. Wg Cdr Dhariwal is a dynamic officer with exceptional professional knowledge achieved through hard work and perseverance. As the Commanding Officer he has led the squadron from the front by ensuring sagacious planning, foresight and achieved enviable status of best RPA serviceability state in the entire RPA fleet, the squadron was commended for 100 % serviceability state twice by HQ SWAC. Under his leadership, the squadron has trained maximum number of External Pilots to facilitate smooth operations of RPA in IAF. His decision making abilities, level of staff work, command and control are of exceptional order. Despite his demanding appointment, he is ever willing to take on any additional service commitment and accomplish it with enthusiasm. For exceptional devotion to duty, quick and correct decision making while handling a complex emergency in air in saving the valuable aircraft, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)' to Wing Commander Yashpal Singh Dhariwal.
Group Captain Hrushikesh Jagannath Page (23566) was commissioned to in the Indian Air Force as a pilot in the flying branch on 17 JU.195. The officer is posted as Commanding Officer of a RPA Squadron since 22 Apr 13. Gp Capt Page is a qualified flying instructor with vast experience on the Mig-21 aircraft. His instructional ability and mentoring of young fighter pilots was appreciated and he was commended by the AOC-in- C. He was instrumental in the planning and execution of the permanent relocation of a training unit in EAC. The officer underwent the Defence Services Staff Course where he was adjudged the Best in Campaign Planning and also awarded the OS Grading. As SAS&IO of a large fighter base, he was, on multiple occasions, adjudged the Best Aerospace Safety Manager in WAC. During this tenure the Officer encountered a critical aircraft emergency which he handled exceptionally and was awarded the Commendation by the CAS. He converted to the RPA fleet and in a short time got categorized as internal pilot and achieved the qualification of Mission Commander. As Commanding Officer of the RPA Sqn the officer has ensured that his unit has performed admirably and competently in all aspects of Operations, Maintenance and Administration. The unit flew a total of 1314 h during his tenure without any human error accident or incident. The unit was adjudged the Best RPA Squadron in the Command and also won all the Ex Eklavya trophies for the year 20I3 - 14.The Directorate of Air staff Inspection too judged the operational capability of the unit as average plus. Under his effective leadership the moral of the unit remained high and the unit achieved many operational milestones. He has submitted various operational oriented papers to enhance the op capability of IAF. He was instrumental in planning and validating the RPA Op Philosophy during the AF Level EW Exercise. For exceptional devotion to duty. Hon'ble President is pleased to award Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty) to Group Captain Hrushikesh Jagannath Page.
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