|Flt Lt||Bhupinder 21545 F(P)||Unit : No.114 Helicopter Unit||Award Date 22 Oct 97||Announced 26 Jan 98|
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Flight Lieutenant Bhupinder (21545) F(P) is on the posted strength of 114 Helicopter Unit Air Force since 25th March, 1996. During this tenure he has flown 380 hours in the inhospitable terrain of Siachen Glacier without any accident/incident.
On 22nd October, 1997 Cheetah Z-1457 force landed at Amar helipad. Consequently, the helicopter had to be recovered from the site, which was at 19,250 ft and also under constant enemy shelling. Flight Lieutenant Bhupinder was detailed as co-pilot in this recovery operation on 24th October 1997, he along with his Captain were landed at Amar helipad. Despite sporadic enemy shelling, he assisted his captain in starting up the aircraft and executing a safe take off, thereby displaying courage and professionalism of a very high order. The aircraft was subsequently flown back to Base camp safely.
On 26th October, 1997, he was detailed as captain for an air maintenance sortie to Bila helipad. While unloading at the helipad, his aircraft came under heavy shelling. His copilot Flight Lieutenant AK Kurian (121730) F (P) sustained a shrapnel injury in the leg, and the aircraft itself suffered debris damage. Flight Lieutenant Bhupinder maintained his composure and quickly carried out a take off. He safely flew the extensively damaged aircraft to Base camp. Post flight inspection revealed heavy damage to main rotor blades, airframe and Perspex.
Flight Lieutenant Bhupinder has, thus, consistently displayed courage and professionalism of a very high order in the face of enemy.
|Reference:||Gazette of India , 15th August 1998 - No.113 - Pres/98 dated 23rd January 1999|