Awards for the year 1979


A total of 38 Awards are listed.
Param Vishist Seva Medal : 4 | Kirti Chakra : 1 | Ati Vishist Seva Medal : 9 | Shaurya Chakra : 5 | Vayu Sena Medal : 10 | Vishist Seva Medal : 9 |
Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Dilbagh Singh 2998 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Marshal Dilbagh Singh was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in 1944. In his long career in the Indian Air Force, he has commanded operational formations with distinction and has excelled in planning of operations and their execution. He has made valuable contribution towards combat readiness of the Indian Air Force squadrons, By his outstanding qualities of leadership, administrative and organising ability, initiative and drive, he infused a healthy spirit of competition amongst the operational units of the Indian Air Force. As Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of an Operational Group, he was instrumental in updating the operational and air defence plans, and enhancing the fighting efficiency of the Air Force in his Sector. He has constantly endeavoured to bring about allround improvements in the Indian Air Force.

Air Marshal Dilbagh Singh has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Idandas Werbona Sabhaney 2607 SIGUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Marshal Idandas Warhomal Sabhaney was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in 1943 and served till August, 1978. During his long service career, he held various important assignments with distinction. An Electronics Engineer by profession, and an Associate Member of the British Institute of Radio Engineers, he brought to bear his technical acumen and professional skill on the maintenance aspect of the Indian Air Force. As Air Officer-in-Charge Maintenance, his contribution to the augmentation of production at Base Repair Depots and planning of aircraft serviceability immensely enhanced the flying capability of the entire fleet of aircraft in the Indian Air Force. His significant contribution included embracing of all facets of technology and logistics in the Indian Air Force in a scientific and methodical manner. His profound sense of judgment, organisational capability and realistic planning helped in better utilisation of aircraft with available resources.

Air Marshal Idandas Warhomal Sabhaney has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Harkrishan Lal Kapur 2165 ADMUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Harkrishan Lal Kapoor was commissioned in the Administrative branch of the Indian Air Force in January, 1943. He has since held a wide variety of assignments. He has the distinction of holding the post of Staff Officer to the Chief of Air Staff for 8 years. His contribution towards re-organisation and expansion of the Air Force, operational preparedness, manpower utilisation and personnel policies of the Air Force has been of a high order. As Judge Advocate General of the Air Force, he streamlined, with a systematic approach, the legal procedures for timely dispensation of justice. His keen interest in and long association with sports, won many laurels for the IAF and the Services in the national and international fields. Having distinguished himself as Chairman of Air Force Sports Control Board, he is now the President of Services Sports Control Board, Vice President of the Indian Olympic Association and President of the Hand-Ball Federation of India.

Air Vice Marshal Harkishan Lal Kapoor has thus tendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Vettakkorumakankav Sivarama Narayanan 3549 AELUnit : DRDL  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Vettakkorumakankav Sivarama Narayanan was posted to the Defence Research and Development Laboratory in 1972, as its Director and Project Officer. There, he built up extensive and comprehensive infrastructure relating to rocket tests, flight range fabrication, aerodynamics, structural tests, environmental tests and quality control, He also built up technological competence in the fields of propulsion, navigation guidance, control, structures, computer science and system technology. He activated a number of sister Research and Development Laboratories and production units, in their respective areas of specialisation and production competence, as relevant to the large weapon systems. He also has motivated, trained and built up a team of young dedicated scientists to form the “core" in the various areas of Missile Technology. These efforts have taken the shape of a complete integrated complex system for utilising and harnessing the resources of the various production units into a time-bound and cost-bound hardware development programme. Thereby a nucleus of powerful project management capability for large projects has been established.

Air Vice Marshal Vettakkorumakankav Sivarama Narayanan has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Kirti Chakra
Gp Capt Denzil Keelor 4805 F(P)Unit : Tactics and Combat Development Establishment  Award Date 27 Mar 78 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details : On the 27th March, 1978, while Group Captain Denzil Keelor was flying a combat aircraft at high altitude, its canopy flew off and this exposed him to explosive decompression ad severe wind blast. His eyes, ear-drum and left arm were injured and he experienced great difficulty in controlling the aircraft. Although abandoning the aircraft in the circumstances would have been justified, he decided to recover the aircraft. Under these adverse conditions, wherein he was not able to have a proper view due to wind blast, and that too only with one eye, he brought the aircraft back to base and executed a safe emergency landing.

Again, on 17th May 1978, during a live airto-air sortie, a 23 mm High Explosive shell burst as it left the gun muzzle. Shrapnel damaged the aircraft and caused total failure and a serious throttle restriction. The cone extended fully and the associated engine rumbling and surge gave every indication of engine bearing failure. Without electric instruments and Radio Telephony, Group Captain Keelor had no way of either knowing what had happened or of asking for assistance. Assuming that the engine bearing had failed, he decided to attempt am emergency recovery. With his flying skill and experience, he returned to the airfield, set up a flame out pattern and executed a safe landing. The throttle was stuck at 60% revolutions per minute, and in spite of this he was able to stop the aircraft without damage.

Group Captain Denzil Keelor thus displayed conspicuous courage, exemplary professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.


Gp. Capt. Keelor who had rich and wide combat experience and the destruction of a Sabre aircraft to his credit, was flying a MiG-21 FL on 27 Mar 78, when due to structural failure the canopy of the aircraft detached and flew off. Gp Capt Keelor felt sudden decompression and loss of control, but managed to fly back to base and execute a safe emergency landing without the canopy. Later on 17 May 78, during firing trials one of the 23 mm Cannon Shells exploded causing extensive damage and total electrical failure to his aircraft. He sucessfully executed another safe landing back at his airbase.

Reference: Gazette of India , 28th April 1979 - No.15 - Pres/78 dated 26th January 1979 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Mulk Raj 3518 MEDUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Commodore Mulk Raj was commissioned in the Air Force on 12th August, 1943. He has held various staff and field appointments with distinction. As Medical Officer at the Air Force Academy, he showed promise in the field of Aviation Medicine pertaining to problems of flying training. In 1957, he was the first IAF Medical Officer to be selected for appointment as Senior Medical Officer at the National Defence Academy, Kharakvasala. There he made various improvements and converted the local section hospital into a full fledged independent hospital which saved considerable training hours for the cadets. AVSM 1979

He graduated from the Defence Services Staff College in 1959 and was amongst the first few in his Branch who specialised in Aviation Medicine. During this period he did a project study on “Fighter Cockpit Space", the parameters of which were useful in the design of the cockpit of the jet trainer aircraft. As an Aviation Medicine Specialist, he held the important assignments as Officer Commanding Aero­Medical Unit and in the Directorate of Flight Safety. Thereafter, he was posted as Senior Medical Officer of two major flying stations. In all these appointments he acquitted himself creditably. In 1969, he was posted Deputy Director of Medical Services (Personnel) in Air Headquarters where he made valuable contributions towards career prospects of Medical Officers of the Indian Air Force and towards establishment of the present specialist cadre in the Army Medical Corps. He held the charge of the Command Hospital Bangalore in the rank of Group Captain. His professional skill and sympathetic approach, earned him a high reputation and esteem of the patients. His administrative and organising abilities also raised the efficiency of the hospital to a high level of performance. It was he who, for the first time, introduced the concept of polyclinic for outpatients in Service hospitals.

His present tenure as the Principal Medical Officer of Western Air Command is his fourth assignment in a Command in the same capacity. During his current tenure, he has utilised his wide experience to motivate his medical Officers to have a positive approach in the execution of their duties. This has paid handsome dividends in the form of low rates of preventable diseases, the high standards of hygiene and sanitation and the efficient working of Maternity and Child Welfare Centre in the Command. He has also ensured that all Medical Officers are closely involved in the Flight Safety Programmes of units. His personal involvement in keeping the aircrew fit, considerably improved the operational efficiency of units and kept the accident rate down.

Air Commodore Mulk Raj has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Johney William Greene 4093 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Commodore Johney William Greene was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in 1951. He specialised in fighter operations as Pilot Attack Instructor and Day Fighter Leader. Later in 1965, he received training as a specialist in flight safety and has since devoted much of hit attention towards improving safety in the Air Force. He has held several important command and staff appointments, including command of three fighter squadrons and an operational Wing. He served as Director of Flight Safety at Air Headquarters. He has held all these posts with exceptional competence.

He took an active part in the Goa operations and the 1962 operations. He was awarded Vir Chakra for bravery, in 1965 and Vayu Sena Medal for his role in the 1971 Conflict. In all these operations, he displayed exemplary capabilities of his flying skill and leadership.

As Senior Air Staff Officer, No. 1 (Operational) Group, Air Commodore Greene has, with his professional skill and experience, enhanced the operational capability of the combat and support elements of the forces under his Group and improved their flight safety record. He has also made significant contributions in the fields of fighter tactics, standard operating procedures and flight safety. His meticulous planning and remarkable capacity to find viable solutions to problems has won or him the confidence and admiration of his superiors and the esteem of his subordinates.

Air Commodore Johney William Greene has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Man Singh 4094 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Commodore Man Singh was commissioned in the Indian Air Force 1951 and has since held many imports assignments, including the command of fighter squadron, two air staff appointments in Command Headquarters and the command of two operational Wings. He was awarded Vayu Sena Medal in 1971 for his professional skill and contributions towards conduct of operations in December, 1971. Again in January, 1973, he was awarded Vishisht Seva Medal for render distinguished service of a high order.

In 1976, he took over command of a major fighter Wing and, within a short span of 20 months, transformed it dynamic and operationally oriented base, a number of viable welfare and infused a new spirit among the personnel at the station.

The Wing commanded by Air Commodore Man Singh is the base for an aircraft which had been plagued with various maintenance problems, resulting in a poor rate of utilisation. He worked with dedication throughout 1977 to improve the serviceability and utilisation rate of the aircraft and achieved a breakthrough in October that year. Thereafter, all the squadrons have consistently achieved the authorised flying tasks and a high standard of operational preparedness. The particular aircraft fleet is now a viable strike element of the Force which was amply demonstrated during the Air Force Fire Power Demonstration at Tilpat in 1978. It was due to his unflinching dedication and the result­oriented approach to problems that he brought the standard of performance of his station at par with the best in the Air Force.

Air Commodore Man Singh has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Kanwal Krishan Malik 4335 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Commodore Kanwal Krishan Malik was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in 1952. He has been the commanding officer of an operational station in one of the sensitive areas since 1978. Earlier he commanded another operational station during 1976-77 and held important senior staff appointments, both at command and Air Headquarters. In all these assignments, despite limitations imposed by operational commitments and weather conditions, he was able to ensure high standards of operational readiness, and creditably performed all tasks assigned to him. In recognition, he was award the Vayu Sena Medal in 1973.

When he took over the Command of an operational flying Station in May, 1976, a couple of fatal aircraft accidents had taken place at the station. For want of spares and repairs for periods varying from six months to two years, a large number of fighter aircraft were grounded. Air Commodore Malik formulated comprehensive maintenance plans and personally supervised the implementation of these plans at the Station level and through frequent visits to Base Repair Depots and Equipment Depots with the result that all these unserviceable aircraft were reclaimed for full operational flying within a year. This was a creditable achievement in that his was the only Station in the entire Command at that time which had no aircraft unserviceable for more than six months.

He achieved similar improvement in the serviceability of the supporting specials vehicles. He explored markets for spares and brought these vehicles to a serviceability state within a short period. Some of the maintenance and technical procedures and practices and local improvisation in regard to aircraft and supporting vehicles maintenance, which he had developed, were also introduced at other stations in the area which brought about substantial improvement in the level of flight safety in the command.

He took the same keen interest in the welfare of his men and undertook a number of welfare projects. It was due to his personal initiative that a building was constructed for housing a school on the campus which, in that remote station, was not only a great achievement but also helped in raising the morale of the personnel.

Air Commodore Kanwal Krishan Malik has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Gp Capt Manjeet Singh Judge 3709 LGSUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Air Commodore Manjeet Singh Judge was commissioned in the Logistics Branch of the Indian Air Force in November 1949. Since then he has served with distinction in several important appointments at Equipment Depots, Commands and Air Headquarters. He was the Chief Equipment Officer of the largest Equipment Depot and later served as Deputy Director of Maintenance Planning at Air Headquarters. In both these assignments, he acquitted himself creditably. While he was the Chief Equipment Officer at the Equipment Depot, he ably planned and executed the stocks transfer of all ranges of sophisticated Electronics and aircraft spares. He also displayed outstanding administrative and organising ability when he was in command of a widely scattered Equipment Depot. During 1971 Conflict, despite very limited resources at his disposal, he provided very effective administrative support to the Units operating from that base. In recognition of his services, he was awarded Vishisht Seva Medal.

He is now in command of the largest Logistic Complex of the Indian Air Force holding over two lakh items. Recently, he successfully accomplished the important task of carrying out physical stock verification and identification of all the spares held in his Depot within a very short span of time

Air Commodore Manjeet Singh Judge has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Kumarapalayam Ramasubramanyam Natarajan 4270 AEMUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Group Captain Kumarapalayam Ramasubramanyam Natarajan was commissioned in 1952. He is a graduate of the Cranfield Institute of Technology and has held, with distinction, a number of important posts at flying stations, Base Repair Depots,

Command and Air Headquarters. In May, 1976, he was posted as the Senior Maintenance Staff Officer 1 (Operational) Group. The general state of serviceability in the Group, and the quality of maintenance management needed distinct improvement. His initial efforts to raise the level of the standard of maintenance in general and maintenance safety in particular led, within two years, to a creditable all round improvement in maintenance. Under his able guidance, a number of units in the Group were able to achieve 100 percent serviceability which is an outstanding achievement in the Air Force. He also brought down considerably the maintenance induced accident rate which he accomplished because of his clear understanding of the rooted ills that caused maintenance errors and lapses.

Group Captain Natarajan has all along displayed deep professional knowledge, an analytical approach to maintenance problems and ability to manage available resources to yield maximum results. He has enthusiastically shouldered every responsibility entrusted to him and has set an example to his colleagues by his dedicated hard work, disregarding his personal comfort. As the Senior Maintenance Staff Officer, he has provided the necessary dynamic leadership and sound professional direction. By his personal participation in all maintenance activities, he has gained the confidence of the units and has inspired them to achieve the highest standards of maintenance safety and discipline. The high serviceability state of aircraft and associated equipment have contributed significantly to the operational preparedness of the Group.

Group Captain Kumarapalayam Ramasubramanyam Natarajan has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Kshirode Krishna Sen 4495 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Group Captain Kshirode Krishan Sen was commissioned in the Indian Air Force on 1st April, 1953. He has held a variety of appointments during his long and distinguished career which was recognised by the grant of award of Vayu Sena Medal and Bar to Vayu Sena Medal. He was in Command of an operational Squadron during 1968-71 where he acquitted himself creditably. In January, 1976, when he took over Command of a major operational Station where pilots were trained for conversion on to fighter aircraft, there was a large accumulation of aircraft, awaiting inspection. By dint of his effective planning of the maintenance activities, he not only cleared the backlog of work within a few months but also succeeded in implementing comprehensive programme of job training for technical personnel which led to a great improvement in the maintenance standards of aircraft and safety of operations. These maintenance and operating procedures were even taken note of for adoption at other units.

He worked with similar zeal and ingenuity and ensured that the training schedule of pilots on conversion was adhered to despite the low serviceability of the training aircraft. He thus substantially contributed towards the operational readiness of the fighting element. In 1977, it was decided to activate an Air-to-Air live firing range for all the fighter squadrons of the Indian Air Force. This range was located within the jurisdiction of his Station which lacked many resources to meet the additional commitment. Despite these limitations, he met the assigned task to the entire satisfaction of all the operational Commands.

He introduced new welfare measures to make a congenial living at the base. He provided, among other amenities, additional married accommodation by converting, at very little cost, buildings fit for residential purposes, which had remained unoccupied for want of repairs. As a result, the morale of officers and men and civilian staff under his command has always been high.

Group Captain Kshirode Krishna Sen has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Appakudal Jayaraman Srinivasan 4933 AEMUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Appakudal Jayaraman Srinivasan was commissioned in the Aeronautical Engineering (Mechanical) Branch of the Indian Air Force in 1955. He has served with distinction in a Base Repair Depot, in a Research and Development Establishment and in an operational unit. He has consistently exhibited outstanding qualities of leadership and has always been engaged in inventive activity requiring initiative, intelligence and perseverance. During his last tenure at Air Headquarters, he was incharge of a Project Team, entrusted with the task of establishment of facilities for overhaul of an aircraft, its aero­engine and aggregates.

In December 1971, there was urgent requirement for development of a system to improve the potentiality of a weapon in the Service. He volunteered to take up this assignment in addition to his normal duties. This job involved experimental work in the field un-explored in the country before. As leader of the team, he shouldered the responsibility of the overall design and development and, with his inventive mind, he solved innumerable problems. At a stage, where the prospects of the project looked bleak because of disheartening results, he steered the project to success.

Wing Commander Appakudal Jayaraman Srinivasan has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Sqn Ldr Sivaramakrishan Chandramouli 6571 AELUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Sivaramakrishan Chandramouli has been serving with the Aircraft and System Testing Establishment as a Senior Test Instrumentation Engineer since January, 1972. Soon after his joining, the Unit was reorganised and its flight test commitments increased tremendously. Squadron Leader Chandramouli had no formal training as a test instrumentation engineer. By dint of hard work and deep study, he not only trained himself, but, in a short time, attained an exceptional level of proficiency in this highly specialised field. As more sophisticated aircraft and equipment were offered for trials, each task became a challenge as it posed its own special requirements of measuring

techniques and instrumentation. He successfully carried out these tasks by improvising and developing new techniques and working tirelessly totally unmindful of personal discomfort. He has done pioneering work in developing a technique to measure the effects of aerodynamic, inertial and firing loads on the suspension system of aircraft, with extremely limited resources. This enabled the carriage envelope of new stores to be fixed more accurately than hitherto. He has also carried out photographic modifications on a large number of aircraft which have been very successful in assessing release characteristics and trajectories of many new airborne stores. He is also responsible for electrical inter­phasing of new systems to the trial aircraft and many electrical modifications for the flight trials. He single handedly tackled many other tasks and was able successfully to fulfill all requirements in a short time and at a small expenditure.

Squadron Leader Chandramouli has also been directly responsible for instrumenting aircraft of the Test Pilot School and for the successful conduct of various test exercises by student officers. With his ingenuity, he has evolved a number of simple and highly successful techniques for evaluation of new electrical instruments and photo systems which have considerably improved the operational efficiency of the Air Force and performance of work in the Research and Development in the country.

Squadron Leader Sivaramakrishan Chandramouli has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Shaurya Chakra
WO Ekambaram Raman 210729 ORUnit : Air HQ and Comm  Award Date 29 Apr 77 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

On the night of 28th/29th April, 1977, a defense Security Crops Jawan on sentry duty at technical area gate deserted his post with a service rifle, shot dead two DSC personnel in DSC Billet and took shelter behind double security fencing near the locked gate. All efforts to apprehend him failed. He took position near the gate and threatened to shoot any one who would approach him. When all efforts to apprehend him failed, Warrant Officer Raman Orderly Officer, was briefed by Commanding Officer, and he organized a party of armed airmen and DSC Jawans and surrounded the area where the alleged assassin was standing. Himself armed with service revolver, he gained entry into the technical area through barbed wire fencing and stealthily approached the culprit from behind. At great personal risk and by a clever move, he succeeded in disarming the DSC sentry and obtaining his surrender.

In this action, Warrant officer Ekambaram Raman displayed great courage, determination and devotion to duty of a very high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 28th April 1979 - No.16 - Pres/78 dated 26th January 1979 

Shaurya Chakra
Flt Lt Puthalath Kandy Raveendran 12821 AE(M)Unit : Air HQ and Comm  Award Date 04 Nov 77 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Puthalath Kandy Raveendran was on attachment as under training Flight Engineer when he was detailed on a TU-124 aircraft to fly Prime Minister and other dignitaries from Delhi to Johrat, on the 4th November, 1977. While the aircraft was in the process of making an approach for landing, disaster struck and aircraft crashed about six kilometers from Jorhat airfield.

Flight Lieutenant Raveendran, who was sitting in a rear passenger cabin, immediately took stock of the situation and organized systematic evacuation of the dignitaries and other passengers from the aircraft. He helped them to leave the aircraft quickly and safely and guided them to a safe distance from the aircraft as the fire was seen around the starboard engine. Even though badly injured, he quickly walked to Air Force Station Jorhat in order to get the urgently needed medical and rescue facilities. This enabled the Station authorities to reach the scene of the accident, along with the medical aid, in the shortest possible time.

In this action, Flight Lieutenant Puthalata Kandy Raveendran displayed courage, initiative and devotion to duty of a very high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 28th April 1979 - No.16 - Pres/78 dated 26th January 1979 

Shaurya Chakra
Cpl Keshav Nath Upadhya 232550 ORUnit : Air HQ and Comm  Award Date 04 Nov 77 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Corporal Keshav Nath Upadhaya was on the posted strength of Air Headquarters Communication Squadron when he was detailed as ground crew on TU-124 aircraft carrying the Prime Minister and other dignitaries from Delhi to Jorhat on 4th November, 1977. The aircraft, in the process of making an approach for landing, crashed about six kilometers from Jorhat Airfield and all the aircrew members were killed.

Corporal Upadhaya sustained injuries during the accident; but he displayed outstanding initiative and exceptional presence of mind in the face of grave emergency in the dark night conditions. He reassured the passengers, and quickly opened the rear door of the aircraft and rendered valuable assistance to the passengers in leaving the crashed aircraft quickly. Along with others, he guided the Prime Minister and other passengers to safety. Notwithstanding his personal injuries, he went back to phy sically assist some of the seriously injured passengers to reach a safe location. After ensuring that all passengers were safe and in total disregard to personal safety and comfort he went back to crashed aircraft and searched for the aircrew members. Corporal Upadhaya helped in locating the bodies and assisted in extricating them from the wreckage. Thereafter, he accompanied Flight Lieutenant Raveendran on foot to Air Force Station, Johrat and guided the rescue party back to the scene of the accident.

In this action, Corporal Keshav Nath Upadhaya displayed exemplary courage, presence of mind and devotion to duty of an exceptional order with total disregard to his personal safety and comfort in spite of his own injuries, in the best traditions of the Indian Air Force.

Reference: Gazette of India , 28th April 1979 - No.16 - Pres/78 dated 26th January 1979 

Shaurya Chakra
Fg Off Sudhir Kumar Sinha 14084 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 04 Apr 78 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

On 4th Apr 1978, Flying Officer Sudhir Kumar Sinha got airborne in a supersonic aircraft on a training flight. Approximately thirty minutes after take off and about 120 nautical miles away from base, his aircraft had a total electrical failure. His very high Frequency Radio/Telephony sets suddenly faded out and within a couple of minutes all other electrical services ceased to function. He was thus left without Radio/Telephony contact or any navigational aids over desert terrain, which had very few land marks, he calculated his course back to base and headed back with the help of the standby compass which was the only direction indicating instrument available to him. The electrical failure also made it impossible for him to use the entire contents of the auxiliary fuel tank and the fuel gauges were inoperative. He, therefore, had to land back at base in the shortest possible time. His electrical trimmer systems were also inoperative and he had to prepare himself for landing out of trim with a forward centre of gravity configuration.

On his return to base, Flying officer Sinha lowered his undercarriage in preparation for landing and found that his nose wheel cocked to one side. With full knowledge of the disastrous consequences which could result on landing with a cocked nose wheel, Flying Officer Sinha elected to go ahead and brought the aircraft under control immediately after touchdown. He thus saved a valuable aircraft which would otherwise have been lost.

In this action, Flying Officer Sudhir Kumar Sinha displayed great courage, determination and professional skill of a very high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 28th April 1979 - No.16 - Pres/78 dated 26th January 1979 

Shaurya Chakra
Sqn Ldr Francis John Williams 7441 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 03 Sep 78 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Francis John Williams was engaged in the flood relief operations in West Bengal when, on 3rd September, 1978, he received information that a marooned family was perched on top of a thatched hut surrounded by swirling water of river Kasai. A portion of the hut had already collapsed and, due to its continuous lashing by the waters of flooded river, the lives of the members of the family were in danger and their evacuation was necessary. This was a hazardous task as there was water and trees around the hut. However, he reached the area in a float modified Chetak helicopter. He went down on a float and hung himself against the 'step'. He pulled out the winch cable and threw it to the bewildered people. Explaining in sign language and with the help of an inflated tube, he pulled in eight emaciated individuals, including seven babies, in the first attempt. The helicopter repeated the mission three times to carry out the recovery of all twenty one trapped people.

In this action, Squadron Leader Francis John Williams displayed great courage, determination and professional skill of a very high order.

Reference: Gazette of India , 28th April 1979 - No.16 - Pres/78 dated 26th January 1979 

Bar to Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Manjit Singh Dhillon 7021 F(P)Unit : No.109 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Manjit Singh, Dhillon was commissioned in the Air Force in 1963. He has undergone advanced Helicopter courses in foreign countries and is in command of a Helicopter Base at present. He has over 4500 hours helicopter flying to his credit. He has taken part in the 1965 and 1971 Indo-Pak conflicts. He was awarded Vir Chakra for gallantry during Indo-Pak Conflict, 1971.

The Bhagirathi river experienced unprecedented floods during August, 1978. Wing Commander Manjit Singh Dhillon conducted the relief operations and under his guidance, 35 tons of food and other supplies were airlifted to stranded pilgrims within a short period. He also directed the evacuation of 362 old and infirm pilgrims and parties of school and college students.

Immediately after the floods in the Bhagirathi river, on the night of 3rd September, 1978, All India Radio broadcast a warning of expected floods in the areas adjoining Sharanpur, Kamal and Delhi. Wing Commander Manjit Singh Dhillon anticipated that there would be a requirement of relief operations in the Western UP area. He, therefore, immediately mounted Helicopter Flights to monitor the flow of water in the river Yamuna and, thereafter, directed relief and supply dropping missions in the Western UP and the Haryana sectors till the floods in the Yamuna receded. Throughout the period of relief operations commencing from the middle of August, 1978, till their completion in mid September, 1978, Wing Commander Dhillon worked tirelessly and it was by his singular determination and dauntless efforts tint relief was provided in the shortest possible time to the affected areas.

Throughout these operations, Wing Commander Manjit Singh Dhillon has displayed initiative, professional competence and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Wg Cdr Venkataraman Shankar 5197 F(P)Unit : No.49 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Venkataraman Shankar has been the Officer Commanding of a Packet Squadron since 29th April, 1976. Ever since he took over Command of the Squadron, he realised the need to activate his team into a wellknit and cohesive force. As a result, the Squadron has been able to meet all operational and training Commitments that were entrusted to it and has achieved an excellent state of operational status. A man with strong love for flying and decisive and poised in handling emergencies, he was successful in maintaining the morale of the officers and men of his Squadron very high. As a pilot, he has to his credit a total of 6800 hours of accident/incident free flying and 3900 hours of purely operational flying in both Eastern and Northern Sectors. He stands fully qualified for operations in J&K, Ladakh, Nagaland, Mizoram, and Arunachal Pradesh where flying calls for the most stringent standards of professional competence and acumen. By his keen insight into the working of men and material and capability to quickly anlayse situations, he has been able to bring the aircraft serviceability state of his Squadron to an all time high. It is during his stewardship that the Squadron has been adjudged the best Squadron for Flight Safety and has been awarded the Flight Safety Trophy for the year 1977. He has achieved the highest 'A' /Master Green on three different aircraft and has maintained this status for the past 14 years.

Wing Commander Venkataraman Shankar has thus displayed leadership, high professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg Cdr Kamesh Khanna 5795 F(P)Unit : No.18 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Kamal Khanna was detailed on the 12th August, 1977, to carry out engine check on a Gnat aircraft. While carrying out aerobatics, he noticed that Jet Pipe Temperature was high. He decided to return to base. While returning, he experienced buffeting of the nose, revolutions per minute unwinding and JPT going up against the stop. This engine failure was coupled with hydraulic failure and oil pressure dolls eye turning white. Despite so many emergencies, Wing Commander Kamal Khanna kept cool and decided to force land the aircraft on the airfield instead of ejecting. He handled this serious emergency with utmost competence and landed the aircraft safely.

In this action Wing Commander Kamal Khanna displayed exemplary courage, professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Perepuu Sreerama Murthy 6555 AE(M)Unit : AFS Jorhat  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Perepu Sreerama Murthy joined the Air Force in 1962. In November, 1975, he took over as Chief Engineering Officer of a Transport Wing. By his managerial capability and sound professional knowledge, he made a creditable contribution towards a high rate of serviceability and flight operation of ageing Dakota aircraft.

On learning about the loss of contact with the aircraft with Prime Minister on 4th November, 1977, Squadron Leader Murthy mobilised, with commendable speed, specialist and other vehicles with adequate manpower and equipment to proceed to the crash site for rescue work. On arrival at the crash site, he set forth to secure safety of the aircraft systems to prevent any explosion or outbreak of fire. Without any loss of time, he got the area, soaked with spilled fuel around the aircraft, cleared of all rescue and security personnel approaching with naked flames and kerosene lamps. Undeterred by the risk involved, he manoeuvred through the narrow passages, surrounded by sharp and twisted structures, inside the crashed aircraft and isolated the sources of electrical power and also ensured that no risk of explosion existed from the charged bottles. Despite unsafe access to the fuel tanks, due to the aircraft resting on its belly and the darkness, he managed to plug damaged fuel lines.

A crash tender and an ambulance struck in the slushy and damaged track had blocked the narrow approach to the crash site. This blockage affected the rescue operation to the extent that even the car carrying the Prime Minister was held up for nearly half an hour. Squadron Leader Murthy arranged for the recovery vehicles, equipment and manpower and got the blockage cleared to enable movement of all rescue vehicles and thus ensured speedy execution of the rescue operations.

In this action, Squadron Leader Perepu Sreerama Murthy displayed courage, determination, professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Harbinder Singh Sidhu 7682 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Harbinder Singh Sidhu has been on the posted strength of a Packet Aircraft Squadron since January, 1974. He is a qualified Flying Instructor and has been instructing on Packet aircraft since March, 1973. He has amassed an enviable total of 4168 flying hours to his credit, out of which 1100 hours are on instructional flights. He has considerably improved the operational and categorization state of the Squadron. As a result, the Squadron not only cleared the back log in training of pilots caused due to grounding of Packet aircraft but also achieved the distinction of second best categoriscd squadron amongst all the transport squadrons in the Air Force for the year 1977.

On the 6th April, 1978, during a night dual check sortie, he encountered a rare emergency not known in the history of Packet flying. While going round at 300 feet Advanced Ground Landing, when the flaps were raised to take off position, the starboard outboard flap linkage gave way shifting the starboard outboard flap to the right which lifted the starboard aileron and acted as a lock to the aileron controls. The aircraft viciously rolled to the starboard. Undeterred by the seriousness of the situation, he maintained his presence of mind, decided to reduce power on port engine, landed on the runway with the help of rudders alone and saved the aircraft and the precious lives of the crews from an impending disaster. In an earlier accident, he gave a similar account of his high professional skill and cool headedness by crash landing on the runway at night when his aircraft was not able to maintain height due to runway propeller soon after take off'.

Squadron Leader Harbinder Singh Sidhu thus displayed courage, professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Ashok Anand Thosar 8209 F(P)Unit : 104 HU  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Ashok Anand Thosar has been in an operational Helicopter Unit in Western Sector since May, 1976. He has to his credit 3600 hours of living, out of which 2500 accident free hours have been on helicopters mainly over inhospitable terrain. Under his leadership, his unit, accomplished all operational tasks with great success and achieved the distinction of winning Flight Safety Trophy for the year 1977 for the Accident Free Flying record.

He has successfully undertaken innumerable operational missions, which included VIP commitments, logistic support, relief operations and casualty evacuations. During August, 1977, he gave an excellent account of his professional skill as a Chetak Helicopter Team Leader while conducting Flood Relief Operations in Delhi Area. Again, on 4th September, 1977, he evacuated a dangerously ill Army Jawan from an unprepared and restricted helipad at a height of 13,500 feet and saved a valuable life.

Squadron Leader Ashok Anand Thosar has thus displayed courage, professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Sqn Ldr Gopalasamudram Mahadevan Vishwanathan 9056 F(P)Unit : No.45 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Goplasamudram Mahadevan Viswanathan was commissioned in the Air Force in December, 1964. He has been performing the duties of a flight commander in a front line supersonic fighter Squadron since July, 1976.

He has to his credit 1980 hours of flying on various types of aircraft, of these 1625 hours are on jet fighters. He has maintained an accident-free flying record and it is for this unblemished performance that the he was commended by Chief of the Air Staff on the 26th January, 1975.

On the 16th March, 1978, at about 1100 hours while Squadron Leader Viswanathan was performing the duties of Senior Flying Supervisor in the Air Traffic at a Station, a fighter pilot was coming in for a landing after his training sortie. A bird hit the aircraft at a very low height just a few second before landing. The young pilot decided to eject and transmitted his intentions on the Radio telephone. Squadron Leader Viswanathan, who was fully attentive, realised that the aircraft was at too low a height to permit a safe ejection. Without loosing even a fraction of a second, he advised the pilot to force land straight ahead and thereafter guided him on Radio telephone about the forced landing. His alertness on duty and sound judgment helped in saving the valuable life of a young pilot as well as a valuable aircraft.

Squadron Leader Gopalasamudram Maha devan Viswanathan thus displayed exemplary professional competence and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Flt Lt Shailendra Pratap Singh 12036 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Shailendra Pratap Singh has been on the posted strength of a Helicopter Unit since November 1976. He has a record of nearly 1800 accident-free flying hours. He has flown nearly 400 hours during 1978, a major portion of which was on operational role.

During the flood relief operations in August-September, 1979, Flight Lieutenant Shailendra flew nearly 100 hours on flood relief sorties in Kanpur, Lucknow and Varanasi. As an independent detachment commander, he ensured maximum possible flying sorties to make the relief work more effective. In utter disregard to his personal comforts, he carried out his task in a purposeful manner. He also worked hard for long hours to complete his assignment.

Flight Lieutenant Shailendra Pratap Singh has thus displayed high determination, professional competence and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
Flt Lt Brijendra Singh Siwaich 12413 F(P)Unit : 3 AOP Flight  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Bijender Singh Siwach was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in June, 1970. He has served, with credit, in various Helicopter units ever since his commission. At present he is performing the duties of a Flight Adjutant in an Air OP Squadron. The officer has been an asset to the Squadron and on more than one occasion, he has performed flying tasks out-side the call of his normal duties.

On the 7th July, 1977, Flight Lieutenant Siwach was called upon to rescue five casualties of an Army Mountaineering Expedition from Mun Kun peak area in Shafat Glaciers. The pilot had no previous knowledge of the terrain and used his professional skill to locate and evacuate casualties from an altitude of 17,000 feet. This hazardous task was performed in the face of adverse climatic conditions and he had to carry out three sorties to evacuate the five serious casualties. This flying operation took over six hours.

In this action, Flight Lieutenant Bijender Singh Siwach displayed high professional competence, determination, courage, and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vayu Sena Medal
JWO Khaman Singh Subba 400800 ORUnit : -N.A.- Award Date Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Junior Warrant Officer Khaman Singh Subba was posted as the JWO in-charge of the Helicopter Detachment. On the 2nd September, 1979, there was only one helicopter with the Detachment and it was utilised to carry out flood relief operations in and around Midnapore town in West Bengal between 1430 hours and 1800 hours. Servicing and float fitment were carried out on this helicopter till early morning on 3rd September, 1978, and the relief operations were further intensified with the arrival of 5 more Chetaks that day. The Detachment, with its fleet of 6 helicopters, actively participated in the flood relief operations till 9th September, 1978 and earned appreciation from all concerned.

All this achievement was possible because of the untiring efforts put in by Junior Warrant Officer Subba in maintaining these aircraft. By his tact and professional skill, he effectively utilised the meagre resources and limited manpower available to him. He kept up the morale of his men high by personal example. He remained with them for long hours and guided and supervised their activities which resulted in quick and systematic turn-round of the helicopters.

Junior Warrant Officer Khaman Singh Subba thus displayed determination, leadership, professional skill and devotion to duty of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India dated 19th January 1980 - No.7- Pres/80 dated 26th January 1979 

Vishist Seva Medal
Gp Capt Surya Dev Pathak 3988 ACCTUnit : Air Force Group Insurance Society  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Group Captain Surya Dev Pathak was commissioned in the Accounts branch of the Air Force on 1 Dec 50. During his twenty seven years of service, he has held a variety of responsible appointments and displayed tact, initiative, drive and devotion to duty, of a very high caliber.

In November, 1975, he was specially selected to take over as the first secretary of the Air Force Group Insurance Society, an entirely new field of activity for an Accountant Officer. Air Force was the pioneer in starting the scheme in the Armed Forces and in the absence of previous knowledge, experience and reliable data/statistics had to face numerous hurdles. Group Captain Pathak, however, applied himself to this new and challenging assignment with a very high sense of responsibility and dedication and in collaboration with the Life Insurance Corporation of India, got the scheme started.

Within one year of existence of this scheme, with his skilful management, he made it possible to delink the scheme form LIC thus resulting in a saving of Rs. 12 lacs to the Society, which was transferred to the members in the form of increased Survival Benefits and reduced "Flying Extra Premium". Again in early 1978, through a scheme of re-insurance with banks, he was instrumental in augmenting the yield on Society's investments by Rs. 7 lakhs per annum.

Encouraged by tangible results and the support of members, he formulated a new scheme in April 1978, which envisaged enhanced life cover, better survival benefits, cover to NCs (E) and disability insurance for rehabilitation of disabled personnel. The last mentioned benefit is another "First" on the map of Group Insurance in the Armed Forces.

The brilliance, skilful managements, zeal, hard work and dedication to service displayed by Group Captain Pathak, in bringing this major welfare measure to its present stature, have been of a very high order. Rashtrapati is pleased to award Vishisht Seva Medal to Group Captain Surya Dev Pathak.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Satwant Singh 5010 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Satwant Singh took over the command of one of the Forward Base Support Units on 20th December, 1976. This unit is situated at a distance of 10 Km from the nearest town. The place is secluded and far away from any habitation. It was an exacting task to give a face lift to the unit. Wing Commander Satwant Singh being an enterprising officer worked with remarkable zeal to bring up the working condition of the unit to a very high order. Besides involving himself totally in the activations form time to time, he continued to reshape the station through dogged perseverance, which was the main reason for the Squadron to achieve the flying task. The promptness with which he handled and settled the problems of personnel won him acclaim from one and all. He thus built up the morale of personnel under his command. His unit has been adjudged the best amongst the Forward Base Support Units in the Western Air Command. The signal honour which the unit has been able to achieve is mainly due to his professional involvement and competence with utter disregard to his personal comfort.

For distinguished service of a high order, Rashtrapati is pleased to award Vishisht Seva Medal to Wing Commander Satwant Singh.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Kunnathidathil Sanjeevan 5615 AE(M)Unit : Air Head Quarters  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Kunnathidathil Sanjeevan (5615) Aeronautical Engineering (Mechanical) was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in November, 1958. After passing out of Air Force Technical College as a triple trophy winner, he had held appointments as Engineering officer/Flight Engineer in fighter, helicopter and transport Squadrons. Subsequently he underwent the Defence Services Staff College Course and the Senior Technical Officers' Management Course wherein he was the winner of the Harjinder Trophy for having stood first in the course. During 1970-74, he held the appointment of Staff Officer (Tech) to three successive Air Officers-in-Charge Maintenance. At present, he is serving as Deputy Director of Engineering at Air Headquarters. As Deputy Director Engineering at Air Headquarters, Wing Commander Sanjeevan has consistently displayed singular drive and professional acumen in solving numerous problems connected with the Maintenance and operation of a type of aircraft resulting in substantial improvement in reliability of engine and appreciable reduction in failure rate.

There were two incidents of runway propeller on the type. The pilot abandoned take off and managed to stop the aircraft just in time in both cases. Air Maintenance operations with the type were, therefore, immediately suspended as a precautionary measure.

A specialist from Manufacturers was called for, who carried out detailed investigations into both these incidents. However, he could not arrive at any definite conclusion with regard to the cause for these two malfunctions. Wing Commander Sanjeevan was detailed as Leader of the Team to carry out further investigation into these two incidents. As a result of his meticulous investigations based on an exhaustive analysis of all information pertaining to the incidents, it was possible to establish the cause of malfunction beyond any doubt. Quality Control Specialist of the firm agreed with the solutions arrived at and commended him for his investigating ability. As a result, the morale of the aircrew operating the type has been raised significantly and resumption of operation for air maintenance tasks has been made possible.

With his devotion to duty and complete involvement in his profession Wing Commander Kunnathidathil Sanjeevan has rendered distinguished service of a high order, for which Rashtrapati is pleased to award him Vishisht Seva Medal.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Dev Nath Rathore 5780 F(P)Unit : No.24 Squadron  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Wing Commander Dev Nath Rathore was posted as Commanding Officer of a Fighter Squadron with effect from 1 Dec 76 when the Squadron moved to another location for reequipping with a new aircraft.

With just a handful of officer and technicians, the Squadron started re-equipping under the personal supervision of Wing Commander Rathore and also commenced training of the staff pilots who had very limited experience on type. Although the tempo of flying had to be kept down due to a number of problems which were being faced in operating these aircraft. It was ensured by the Commanding Officer that sufficient training was imparted to all the pilots undertaking conversion of other pilots who were earmarked to man other similar Squadrons in the re-equipment plan. During his tenure of just over one year, the Squadron has been able to convert a large number of pilots both from supersonic and transonic blocks without any accident or incident.

Wing Commander Rathore showed keen interest an leadership during these conversions and whilst the training was being conducted, he also ensured that the pilots were on the posted strength of his Squadron simultaneously carried out their own Squadron syllabus and were declared fully operational during this period. It was under his command that the Squadron operated three detachments to carry out armament exercises.

Wing Commander Rathore's interest was not limited to training of pilots. The technicians were also given very thorough job training so that various inspections that were falling due were handled in the most professional manner. Although the Squadron was supposed to retain a part of foreign trained technicians in the Squadron in actual fact this did not happen. In due course almost all the foreign trained technicians were posted out to various other Squadrons which had been re-equipped with the new aircraft.

During the period of his command, the Squadron has flown more that two thousand accident free hours by day and night. This was made possible by personal example, professional outlook and matured thinking of the Commanding Officer and absolute supervision at all times. For achieving such excellent results Wing Commander Rathore set an example which is in the best traditions of the service. His professional outlook and selfless devotion to duty were an abject lesson and a morale booster for the personnel under his command. He has thus rendered distinguished service of a high order for which Rashtrapati is pleased to award Vishisht Seva Medal to Wing Commander Dev Nath Rathore.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Wg Cdr Yadavendra Singh 6394 AE(M)Unit : 9 Wing  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Yadavendra Singh was commissioned on 1 Dec 61. He was employed as an Engineering Officer at the Pilot Training Establishment/Elementary Flying School from 1965-68, where he was awarded Commendation by AOC-in-C, Training Command in Jan 68.

While employed on a staff appointment at Air Headquarters between1970-75, he worked very hard and made significant contribution to improve aircraft serviceability in fighter squadrons especially during 1971. He was specially selected for training abroad on first and second line servicing of the latest front line supersonic aircraft. During the first five months of 1975, he worked purely as the Squadron Technical Officer of a Squadron on its re-equipment after which he concurrently assumed the responsibilities of Chief Engineering Officer of a Wing. In that capacity he had been responsible for streamlining and optimizing the working of maintenance organization and raising it to a high level of efficiency and performance to the greater advantage of the fighter squadrons. Being extremely methodical, thorough and meticulous in his work and his dynamic drive have combined to make him a pace setter of very high standards of performance.

Squadron Leader Yadavendra Singh has displayed an outstanding ability in the supervisory role and a deep personal involvement in all spheres of maintenance activities. He has always worked hard with a result oriented practical approach. It is a tribute to his maturity, professional ability and devotion to service that his subordinates cheerfully obey him, his colleagues willingly follow his guidance and those senior to him listen with respect to his advice.

Squadron Leader Yadavendra Singh has been responsible, not only for establishing and functioning an efficient maintenance organization but also for imparting technical knowledge to technical officers and airmen. Due to full personal involvement his Wing had no accident in the year 1977 due to technical mal-practices. During the same year the Wing also had nil MT accident rate. He always placed service before self in the highest traditions of the Indian Air Force. The Station had undertaken the stupendous task of conducting the Fire Power Demonstration with a large number of personnel and diverse aircraft based on the Station. From the technical aspect the entire exercise was without any accident/incident and for this the credit goes to Squadron Leader Yadavendra Singh.

Throughout Squadron Leader Yadavendra Singh has consistently displayed professional ability, dynamic drive, organizing ability and dedication to duty of the highest order for which Rashtrapati is pleased to award him Vishisht Seva Medal.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Sqn Ldr Shishir Kumar Chaturvedi 5814 LGSUnit : 54 Air Stores Park  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Squadron Leader Shishir Kumar Chaturvedi was commissioned in the Indian Air Force in December 1959. He held a number of important appointments including those of Senior Logistics Officer of No. 36 Equipment Depot. In addition, he also commanded an Equipment Depot during its formative stages. He as commended by AOC-in-C Maintenance Command in 1972 and by Chief of Air Staff in 1974 for his outstanding professional skill.

Squadron Leader Shishir Kumar Chaturvedi is presently commanding an Air Store Park. As commanding Officer Squadron Leader Chaturvedi displayed singular drive and high professional acumen in improving the administrative and functional efficiency of the unit. By his persistent endeavour, he was able to start a full fledged Kendriya Vidyalaya from 1 Apr 76 and also got sanction for a permanent Kendriya Vidyalaya in Sep 77. The Unit had practically no facilities for sports. In 1975, a football ground was prepared with the help of local PWD and "Shramdan". This gave a big fillip to the sports activities specially in football. The unit has been annexing the District Football Championship for the last three consecutive years.

Since there was no Senior Admin Officer established at the Unit, all works services had to be planned, processed and progressed by the Commanding Officer himself. During the last two and a half years, works services costing 14 lakhs have been planned and progressed personally by this officer. Considerable quantity of explosive stores had to be moved during the year 1977-78 from and to operating Units. Squadron Leader Chaturvedi accomplished the task of moving huge quantities of explosives with meticulous plan ning without disrupting the normal function of the unit. By his personal endeavour the number of audit objections has been reduced by more than half-from 77 in 1975-76 to 31 in 1977-78. Here again he displayed outstanding professional ability, drive and devotion to duty. In recognition of the good administrative performance of the Unit, his unit was awarded the Trophy for the `Best Administered Unit' for the year 1977.

Shishir Kumar Chaturvedi has rendered distinguished service of a high order for which Rashtrapati is pleased to award his Vishisht Seva Medal.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
WO Krishna Iyer Narayanan 208980 ORUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Warrant Officer Krishna Iyer Narayanan Instrument Fitter has been serving at an operational unit since 18 Mar 74. During this period, he has been employed in both the Daily Servicing Section and Repair and Servicing Section as W.O. in-charge. Though from Instrument Fitter trade and being new to this type of aircraft, his keenness to learn and uncommon zeal at once singled him out for the most responsible supervisory duties. During the formation stages of the Squadron, the technicians were unfamiliar with the equipment while flying activities were extensive. W.O. Narayanan displayed exceptional capacity for hard work and went through the difficult phase most cheerfully. His enthusiasm for work and tenacity of purpose were instrumental in spreading the spirit of dedication amongst rest of the Squadron Senior Non-Commissioned Officers and men. He commended the men placed under him as one team towards common purpose and achievement. During his tenure, he has been on many squadron detachments where the working conditions were far from ideal. Yet, he always exhibited his organizational ability in setting up the Daily Servicing Section and cater at once to the flying commitments without hampering flight safety. During the year 1977, the Squadron was operating at a Forward Base Supply Unit for well over 10 months with the full complement of Daily Servicing Section equipment and personnel. W.O. Narayanan initially proceeded with the detachment and set up the Daily Servicing Section in proper manner. His personal example, professionalism and ability to carry the men along with him have made him an asset to the Squadron. Throughout his tenure, he had been totally dependable, responsible and willing worker. For his services in the Squadron, he was commended by the Chief of the Air Staff during Aug 77.

His selfless dedication to service, total disregard of self and ability to inspire those placed under his command and his colleagues are in keeping with the highest traditions of the service.

Rashtrapati is pleased to award Vishisht Seva Medal to Warrant Officer Krishna Iyer Narayanan Posthumously.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
JWO Gopi Chand Chhabra 236735 ORUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Junior Warrant Officer Gopi Chand Chhabra has been posted to a Signal Unit for the last one year. He has always applied himself, with zeal to overcome any problem. With his initiative, enthusiasm and professional skill, he has ensured a very high rate of radar serviceability. His ingenuity and high professional competence have accelerated the repair and snag rectification of the Radar System.

During his stay in the unit, once he was called upon to undertake major repairs to the main radar, a job which is normally undertaken by RMU party. This contingency necessitated the complete dismantling and assembling after the rectification of the snag. With limited manpower this JWO was able to accomplish this task in the record time of three days by putting in long hours of arduous work beyond the call of his duty. He has taken active part in organising the Unit Radar Stores with great foresight so that the continuous flow of spares is always maintained and there is no breakdown due to nonavailability of spares.

He was successfully implemented a new system of preventive maintenance whereby the technical breakdowns have been reduced to almost zero. Furthermore he has been responsible for supervising the training of Radar Fitters to form a nucleus of expert manpower to tend to various components of Radar Systems and he has organized this complex work admirably. As a result of his hard work this Unit has successfully completed the task despite shortage of spares, distance from repair/supply depot and manpower constraints. Apart from showing the professional skill of high order he has also displayed exceptional sense of devotion to duty and cheerful obedience in the best traditions of the IAF. He has always been a source of inspiration to those working under him.

For his distinguished service of as high order Rashtrapati is pleased to award Vishisht Seva Medal to Junior Warrant Officer Gopi Chand Chhabra.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Cpl Corporal Chandra Mohan Pillai 283406 ORUnit : 4 Base Repair Depot  Award Date 26 Jan 79 Announced 26 Jan 79
Details :

Corporal Chandra Mohan Pillai worked as a Non-Commissioned Officer in the Special Project Section of a repair depot from January 1972 to August 1977. During this period he was employed as one of the few key personnel engaged in the development of an important Armament Store.

Corporal Chandra Mohan Pillai with his keen devotion to duty and inborn tenacity for hard work developed a vital internal assembly of the armament store. He had also fabricated a panel which facilitated time setting of Delay Arming Device to its exacting precision.

Corporal Chandra Mohan Pillai with his innovative ideas, high degree of professional skill and unmatched dedication to duty was rendered distinguished service of a high order for which Rashtrapati is pleased to award him Vishisht Seva Medal.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 1979 Number: 

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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