Awards for the year 2008


A total of 76 Awards are listed.
Param Vishist Seva Medal : 8 | Ati Vishist Seva Medal : 14 | Shaurya Chakra : 4 | Yudh Seva Medal : 1 | Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry) : 19 | Vishist Seva Medal : 30 |
Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Ajit Vishwanath Vaidya 11848 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Ajit Vishwanath Vaidya VM (11848) F (P) was commissioned in the fighter stream of IAF in Dec 1968.

He has over 3000 hours of accident free fighter flying on various aircraft like the Gnat, MiG-21, Mirage-2000, MiG-29 and the latest SU-30. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor and has been an Air Force Examiner. During 39 years of distinguished service he had held various field and staff appointments. As a Wg Cdr he commanded the Mirage2000 sqn. During his tenure as CO, his sqn participated in Male Operations (Op Cactus) in 1988. He led the first mission which successfully projected the might of IAF over these islands. For his leadership and courage, he was awarded the VM in 1990. As a Gp Capt, he commanded AF Station, Naliya and further went on to command the prestigious AF Station Pune which inducted the initial batches of SU-30 aircraft.

His staff appointments include a tenure in 1985 in Central Air Command where he was instrumental in ensuring smooth induction of Mirage-2000 aircraft in AF Station Gwalior. He had two tenures in Air HQ as Director Air Staff Requirements during which period he systematically worked towards fructifying the induction of various equipment included in the yearly acquisition plans. After doing NDC, he took over as Air Defence (AD) Commander of Western Air Command (WAC) on promotion to the rank of AVM in year 2000. He revised the AD philosophy of WAC and ensured smooth integration of all AD elements. On promotion to the rank of Air Marshal on 18 Oct 04, he took over as SASO, HQ Eastern Air Command. As SASO, he displayed exceptional acumen in upgrading the operational efficiency of all the fighting units of this Command. In Sep 05, he was posted to HQ IDS as Deputy Chief of Integrated Defence Staff (Ops). The first important assignment that came his way which he handled successfully was the damage control and assistance to the afflicted during the earthquake in NW India.

In Apr 06, he was sidestepped to PP&FD Branch in HQ IDS where he is presently working. In his present assignment he has shown exceptional expertise and foresight in ensuring jointness, interoperability and commonality in induction of technology and equipment related to all three Services. His contribution in preparation of the 11th Integrated Defence Plan & LTIPP was noteworthy.

During his 39 years, he has displayed professionalism of the highest order and made notable contributions through his proactive approach, hard work and extraordinary positive attitude to the IAF in particular and to the three Services in general. Air Marshal Ajit Vishwanath Vaidya VM has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Gurnam Singh Chaudhry 11870 F(P)Unit : Training Command  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Gurnam Singh Chaudhry AVSM VSM ADC (11870) F (P) was commissioned as a fighter pilot in the IAF on 29 Dec 1968. He is a Flying Instructor, an Experiment Test Pilot and has flown 4300 hours on several fighter, bomber, transport aircraft and helicopters. He is a graduate of Defence Services Staff College and the National Defence College. The Air Marshal participated in 1971 IndoPak war and flew a number of operational missions. He has held varied appointments which include command of a frontline fighter Squadron, Chief Operations Officer and Air Officer Commanding of prestigious fighter bases. The Air Marshal also served as a qualified flying instructor on deputation to the Govt of Iraq. He was on the staff of Defence Services Staff College

and was one of the founder members of HQ IDS. His other important staff appointments include Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Inspection) and Senior Air Staff Officer (SASO) of HQ SWAC. He was awarded VSM in 1992, AVSM in 1999 and was appointed Air ADC to the President of India in 2007.

As the Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Inspection), through meticulous inspections, the Air Marshal contributed towards sustaining high standards of Air Operations, Maintenance and Administrative functioning of the entire IAF. He also revamped Quality Assurance Service functions and re-worked many equipment specifications. As SASO, the Air Officer managed the complete Air Operations in the South Western Sector and was instrumental in integrating SU-30 MKIs and other newly inducted systems into the War Plans. He was also instrumental in conceptualizing, planning and conducting a large number of joint exercises including Exercise 'Gagan Shakti' in Sep 06. His dedicated efforts made Net Centric Warfare Capability a reality in the South Western Air Command.

As the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief Training Command, through relentless efforts he ensured a high standard of training and was instrumental in implementation of the new pattern of training. Successful conduct of “Aero-India 07", a mega-event of international proportion and repute, was also executed under his leadership in an exemplary manner.

Air Marshal Gurnam Singh Chaudhry AVSM VSM ADC has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Jayant Satchidanand Apte 11900 AELUnit : Maintenance Command  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Jayant Satchidanand Apte AVSM (11900) AE (L) was commissioned in the AE (L) branch on 30 Dec 68. He has held important appointments, such as Chief Engg Officer (CEO) of a fighter base, Chief of Planning & Production of Systems Base Repair Depot (BRD), CO of ADGES Training Institute, Command Engg Officer at Western Air Command (WAC) and Command Signals Officer [CSO (Air)] at Eastern Air Command, Air Officer Commanding, AF Stn Kanpur, ACAS (Eng A) at Air HQ and SMSO at Maintenance Command (MC). He is an alumnus of DSSC. For his distinguished service of exceptional order he was awarded AVSM in 2004.

As CEO, his station was adjudged the best in maintenance for two years. While at WAC, he provided directions to bases, operating different types of weapon systems and successfully coordinated maintenance requirements of all operations including three Trishul Exercises. As CSO (Air), he standardised installation of electronic ex-changes and communication systems for enhanced operational availability. At AF Stn, Kanpur, he achieved enhanced production of aircraft and aeroengines and also led revision of life teams for AN-32 airframes and Viper aeroengines, resulting in improved availability for operations. As ACAS (Eng A) at Air HQ, he initiated key strategic decisions of maintenance support and to improve availability of Russian aircraft, helicopters and aeroengines. Some of the major issues initiated which have long term effect are, enhanced life of thrust vector nozzle of Su-30, repair and maintenance facilities for Bison and Su-30 aggregates and long term aeroengine overhaul plan for MiG-29 and AN-32 with OEMs. At HQ MC as SMSO, he coordinated maintenance activities of BRDs resulting in timely completion of tasks. Under his guidance, indigenization stall at Aero India 2003 and 2007 drew considerable response from the private sector, which has contributed immensely in indigenisation of critical spares. He was instrumental in introducing measures to improve the Average Service Life of components, concept of identifying and keeping Non-Performing Assets to a minimum, initiating the use of IT in managing assets in the form of Monitoring Life of MiG 29 and Su 30 MKI Aggregates and AOG management software. A sustained drive to reduce components classified as 'History Not Known' was initiated to reduce such components. His concept of indigenisation BRD will facilitate human, material and intellectual synergies in producing quality spares. He also initiated the concept of opportunity servicing for increasing fleet availability of IL 76 and Flight Refueling Aircraft.

He took over as AOC-in-C, MC on 02 Apr 07 and extended his philosophy of optimisation to Logistic and Administrative areas. His inputs for improving the effectiveness of IMMOLS (Integrated Materials Management On-Line System) will lead to an analytical and problem solving approach for asset management, thereby discarding non-productive activities like maintaining Floor Level Consumption Records. His drive towards tracking assets lying at HAL since long, have lead to recovery of over Rs 30 Crores in last one year and will improve aggregates availability. His passion for a less paper office and increased use of IT has resulted in improved productivity and efficiency of maintenance.

Air Marshal Jayant Satchidanand Apte AVSM has thus rendered distinguished service of most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Pradeep Vasant Naik 12005 F(P)Unit : Air Head Quarters  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Pradeep Vasant Naik, VSM ADC (12005) F (P) was commissioned in the fighter stream on 21 Jun 69. He has flown over 3000 hours on all MiG-21 variants and MiG-23 BNs. In his distinguished career spanning 38 years, he has held many important command and staff appointments, including command of a MiG-21 Bis Squadron, Chief Operations Officer of AF Station Bareilly, Directing Staff at Tactics And Combat Development Establishment and Defence Services Staff College, and command of two important flying bases. He is an alumnus of the National Defence College. As Air I, Western Air Command (WAC) during Op PARAKRAM, he was awarded the VSM in 2003 for meritorious performance. In addition to above the Air Officer had held the appointments of Air Defence Commander, South Western Air Command, DG Air Force Naval Housing Board (DG AFNHB), and Senior Air Staff Officer (SASO) WAC, before being appointed the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief Central Air Command (CAC), IAF wef 01 Nov 06.

As DG AFNHB, he overhauled its functioning and was instrumental in settling long pending court cases. He revamped the Finance Department, enhancing transparency in AFNHB transactions and significantly improving its public image. During his tenure as SASO, WAC, his involvement ensured optimization of resources and expeditious translation of operational concepts into actionable solutions. His clarity of thought and directions enabled his subordinates to focus on clearly defined objectives, maximizing their output, which was evident during the futuristic 'ExerciseGagan Shakti'.

During his tenure as Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Central Air Command, there was considerable enhancement in flying effort coupled with flight safety. Under his guidance, all strategic assets were further operationalised and extensively exercised, and the first ever Air Show was conducted over Sangam in Allahabad. HQ CAC forces won laurels in Ex INDRADHANUSH in UK. The forces under his control also provided prompt relief to flood affected areas in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, significantly enhancing the image of the IAF at home and abroad. He brought about administrative improvements not only in the work environment but also in the quality of life of personnel below officer rank.

Air Marshal Pradeep Vasant Naik, VSM ADC has thus rendered distinguished service of most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Packiam Paul Rajkumar 12018 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Packiam Paul Rajkumar (12018) F (P) was commissioned as a helicopter pilot in the Flying (Pilot) Branch on 21 Jun 1969. He is presently the Commander-in-Chief of only Joint Operational Command in India, namely, the Andaman & Nicobar Command (ANC) at Port Blair from 02 Dec 06. He is an alumnus of Defence Services Staff College, Army War College and the NDC. For distinguished services of exceptional order he was awarded AVSM in 2003.

In the long and illustrious career spanning 38 years, the Air Mshl had held various field and staff appointments. Some of them have been the Principal Director Operations (Transport and Helicopter), Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Operational Concepts and Doctrines) at Air HQ, Deputy Commandant of National Defence Academy (NDA) and Commandant of National Defence College (NDC). As PD (Ops), he oversaw the Transport and Helicopter operations during 'Op Parakram'. He also initiated the proposal for Helicopter Display Team for the Air Force, which led to the formation of the now internationally renowned 'Sarang' Team - the only helicopter display team in the world. Subsequently, as an Air Marshal, he was the Chairman of the Academic Study Group of the NDA. The previous such Study Group was formed more than 30 years earlier. This Study Group recommended wide ranging changes in the academic curriculum at NDA, resulting in synergy between the purely academic and military subjects, for the first time since its inception. The recommendations have now been implemented in toto at the NDA with the approval of JNU and the COSC. As the Commandant of NDC, he pursued award of M Phil Degree to the participants of the Course. Due of his efforts, the course participants in 2006 have been awarded the M Phil degree from Madras University. All future NDC participants will now be eligible for this degree.

As the Commander-in-Chief of the ANC, he had drawn up a vision plan for the progress and development of the command upto 2022. His directions for Joint Planning and Operations had led to very high serviceability of all the fleets in the command. The Naval Fleet achieved the distinction of sailing all their 15 ships for many days in August 2007, which had never been achieved in ANC before. The operational capability and integration of the three Services and the Coast Guard component improved tremendously under his leadership, leading to a record number of apprehensions of foreign poachers in Andamans. As the first Air Force Commander-in-Chief of the ANC, he has exhibited a clear vision for Joint operations and contributed extensively to Jointness amongst the services.

Air Marshal Packiam Paul Rajkumar, AVSM has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Yeshwant Rao Rane 12210 F(P)Unit : Southern Air Command  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Yeshwant Rao Rane AVSM VM (12210) F (P) was commissioned a fighter pilot in the IAF on 20 Dec 69. In his distinguished career spanning four decade the Air Mshl has flown 4600 h on various fighter, bomber and trainer aircraft. He has had varied experience covering a gamut of operational, staff and instructional tenures. He is a Cat A2 qualified flying instructor and a Fighter Combat Leader. He has held various challenging field and staff appointments which include Command of two frontline fighter Squadrons, Command of the only Mirage airbase of the IAF and Principal Director in Operational branch at Air HQ. He has also been the Commandant of Air Force Academy (AFA) and has held the post of Air Officer in charge Personnel (AOP) at Air HQ prior to his taking over as AOC-in-C, SAC since 01 Feb 07. He is a graduate of CDM and an alumnus of the NDC. For his operational and distinguished service of exceptional order, he has been awarded VM in 1990 and AVSM in 2002.

Through out his service career and especially so when holding criteria appointments, he has been the epitome of professionalism, probity and personal integrity. While holding the appointment of Commandant AFA, he was instrumental introducing new pattern of ab-initio flying and ground training which enhanced the quality of output and optimised scarce training resources. While holding the appointment of AOP, he was instrumental in implementing Ajai Vikram Singh Committee (AVSC) within the shortest time frame and formulating the process of AVSC-II report in the IAF. He initiated schemes for Assured Career Progression for PBORs, Second Career option and placement for both Officers and Airmen besides ensuring smooth implementation of 'Just in time training' for airmen and 'Distance Education' scheme for formulation of service courses for officers. He was also instrumental in initiating the case for Short Service Commission in flying branch and introducing Fast Track Selection System for induction of officers in IAF.

As Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief Southern Air Command, the Air Mshl has used his vast experience to make significant administrative improvements in the working environment, culture and improved the qu-ality of life of all personnel. His vision of futuristic and strategic importance of the Southern Peninsula has led to the thrust given to the development of infrastructure in the various bases situated in the South. Under his professional guidance, the concept of “Flexi-Air Space" in the Southern Peninsula has been implemented with integration of civil and military radars. Various Air Defence sensors and resources have been effectively mobilized and coordinated for providing effective Air Defence surveillance and coverage of the Sri Lankan and coastal air space in anticipation of the threat perspective for the Southern Peninsula. His guidance and leadership has enabled the forces under his Command to successfully undertake operations in aid of the civil administration while carrying out relief and rescue mission during flash floods, heavy rains and natural calamities on various occasions in the recent adverse conditions.

Air Marshal Yeshwant Rao Rane AVSM VM has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Jai Krishan Gupta 12308 MEDUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Jai Krishan Gupta AVSM PHS (12308) Med was commissioned on 15 Jan 1970 in the Medical branch. He later on specialized in Aviation Medicine in 1975 and served as an outstanding specialist medical officer in two frontline fighter squadrons and as Senior Medical Officer of a large fighter base. For his distinguished service he was awarded the AVSM in the year 2005 and appointed as President's Honorary Surgeon in 2006. Presently the Air Mshl is Director General Medical Service (Air) since 01 Apr 2007. He was on the faculty of Institute of Aerospace Medicine for 15 years where he made significant contribution in the field of Acceleration Physiology and carried out numerous research projects which reached its logical end. He is a recognized Professor and examiner of Aviation Medicine with Bangalore and Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences. He was also posted as DDMS (Civil Aviation) during which a quantum change in the quality of licensing medical evaluation of civil pilots was evident. He has also held staff posts of DPMO and PMO in two operational Commands with distinction. His experience and meticulous planning as Principal Medical Officer SWAC ensured smooth handling of the medical affairs during 'Op Parakram'.

The officer has commanded two prestigious Medical units of Air Force viz. AFCME, New Delhi and Command Hospital Air Force Bangalore with distinction and both the units were brought up to the level of being the centers of excellence during his tenure. As Commandant of Command Hospital (Air Force) Bangalore, he guided the institution in a manner which enabled it be awarded the prestigious Raksha Mantri Trophy.

His tri-services tenure as Director General Hospital Services in the office of Director General Armed Forces Medical Services enabled better jointmanship amongst the tri-services medical fraternity. The officer is a keen sportsman, who has displayed exemplary dedication, portrayed outstanding contribution and commitment towards the service through his dynamic leadership, vision and foresight.

Air Marshal Jai Krishan Gupta AVSM PHS has thus rendered distinguished service of the most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Param Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Pranab Kumar Barbora 12375 F(P)Unit : Eastern Air Command  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Marshal Pranab Kumar Barbora VM (12375) F (P) was commissioned on 13 Jun 70 as a fighter pilot. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor and Fighter Combat Leader with over 3500 h of accident free flying. His impeccable professional credentials include tenure as Directing Staff in Tactics And Combat Development Establishment (TACDE), two tenures with Directorate of Air Staff Inspection and command of a Fighter Sqn. In 1990, he shaped the first ever Air Combat Simulator to hone the combat skill levels of fighter pilots. For contribution to the Combat potential of the IAF, he was awarded VM in 1990. He has also been commended twice by the CAS.

The Air officer contributed immensely towards air operations in Central Air Command where he served as the Air-I. For excellent professional knowledge and single minded devotion to duty he was deputed to Russia as the Air Attaché in 1998. He took on the mammoth task of ensuring the MiG-21 Bis upgrade and the SU-30 Mk-I programme which moved ahead smoothly. He ensured regular supplies of hard to get spares from the Russian industry by maintaining an excellent rapport with the Russians. He commanded a premier air base in the East which undertook flying training of future generation fighter pilots.

As AVM he served in HQ IDS in its formative days to put into place modalities of Perspective Planning and Force Structure of the three services. He was once again brought back to the Inspection Branch for a third tenure as ACAS (Inspection) where he brought about the changes to improve the inspection procedures and overall health monitoring system of the IAF as a fighting force. He was promoted as Air Mshl and appointed as SASO of Eastern Air Command (EAC) in Sep 05. With his considerable experience, knowledge and operational acumen, he overhauled the execution of Command policies in respect of operational training to substantially upgrade the combat capability and potential of the entire fleet of EAC. Under his close supervision the Command successfully conducted two international air exercises, namely COPE INDIA-05 and SINDEX-06 which were well appreciated in India and abroad.

He was promoted and appointed as Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Eastern Air Command on 02 Apr 07. He, with his inspirational leadership qualities, instilled zeal and confidence among st the field commanders. Bringing his per sonal rapport, he ensured that the PVSM 2008 || AVSM 1962 inter-service relationship continued to scale to new heights in the true spirit of jointmanship. Due to courageous decision taken by him, causality evacuation by night was undertaken for the first time from high altitude and inhospitable terrain of Arunachal Pradesh.

Air Marshal Pranab Kumar Barbora VM has thus rendered distinguished service of most exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Trichinapoly Subramanyam Raghu Raman 12664 MEDUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Trichinapoly Subramanyam Raghu Raman (12664) Med was commissioned on 26 Jan 71. In 36 years of distinguished service, he has held several command and staff appointments that include Associate Professor at Armed Forces Medical College, AOC at an Air Force Hospital (AFH), Principal Medical Officer (PMO) at HQ EAC and currently as Commandant, Command Hospital Air Force Bangalore (CHAFB). For his outstanding performance in the Advance Course in Paediatrics, he was awarded the CNS Medal in 1979.

Whilst commanding the AFH Johrat, he conceptualised and created a medical evaluation centre and thereby immensely benefited both the service and civil aircrew of the entire North East region. As PMO at EAC, he integrated the functional aspects of AFH, Hashimara and Military Hospital, Binaguri and thus the scarce specialist medical care was made available even in the most peripheral Air Force units.

Having excelled in the field of Paediatrics and with vast teaching experience, he has many publications in national journals to his credit and has been a guest speaker in many national seminars. In 2001 as Head of the Paediatrics Department, he brought honour when for the first time in services, the CHAFB was recognised as the 'Baby Friendly Hospital' by the Breast Promotion Network of India and UNICEF.

On taking over as Commandant of CHAFB on 01 Jan 06, he restructured the organisation and provided purpose and direction to the personnel. This in turn has facilitated exponential growth in patient care related activities like the implementation of an unique single window concept of health care for outdoor patients, creation of an all exclusive Diabetic Ward for enhanced patient care, introduction of Battery Operated Vehicle for conveying the patients and the introduction of an innovative multi rack cargo van to counter to the challenging task of food distribution at the patients' bedside. Under his command, the work services has witnessed a rapid growth and culminated in the creation of an ultra modern MRI centre, Accident and Emergency Centre, Blood Component Manufacturing Unit and mega renovation of the Auditorium while other projects like Cardiac Catheterisation Laboratory, Radio Therapy Unit and Married Accommodation are nearing completion. He ingeniously conceptualised and established a modern sports complex and children parks at two independent pockets even amidst the acute space constraints. He, with his foresight and vision, also meticulously provided the organ is ational support for the successful conduct of International Congress of Aviation and Space Medicine in Sep 06 and medical support for the Aero India 2006 at Yelahanka.

Air Vice Marshal Trichinapoly Subramanyam Raghu Raman has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Narayanan Vijayakumar 12725 ACCTUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Narayanan Vijayakumar VSM (12725) Accts was commissioned in the IAF on 26 Jun 71 having been awarded the CAS Medal, Best All-rounder Trophy and later, the President's Plaque for Best Trainee Officer of 1971. The Air Officer has held several important field, instructional, command and staff appointments in his career. He has authored many papers on Public/Non-Public Fund subjects and Manag e ment topics. Other significant contributions by him are the successful completion of major redesigning of “AF Officers' Appraisal System" during 1995-98 and educating AF personnel on the “Air Warrior Concept" at units in the IAF through numerous lectures during 2001-02. As AOC, Air Force Central Accounts Office during 2003-04, he had brought in several improvements in the infrastructure, working environment and functional aspects which enhanced substantially the efficiency of the automated pay accounting services in IAF. The Air Officer is academically highly qualified including a Ph D and is the senior most Accountant Officer in IAF for the past three years. He was commended earlier by the AOCin-C and CAS and awarded VSM in 2001.

As ACAS (Financial Planning) at Air HQ wef Sep 04, he had been successful in getting larger share of budgetary allocations for the IAF with the budget for 07-08 standing at a record Rs. 27,259 Cr which is 28% of the Defence Budget. His personal monitoring and control ensured full utilization of the large allocations in the Capital Budget viz Rs 14,821 Cr in 04-05, Rs 12,560 Cr in 05-06 and Rs. 14,767 Cr in 06-07 despite many constraints. He also streamlined the revenue budget allocation system in and made available sufficient funds to all Air Force Establishments.

Under his able guidance, leadership and personal involvement, the Financial Planning he achieved a number of milestones. A major creditable performance is the savings worth Rs 1,300 Cr effected in nine capital acquisition contracts with HAL during the last three years due to stricter and intelligent scrutiny of price proposals, which helped in sparing precious financial resources for other capital commitments of IAF. Some of the important achievements during his present tenure include finalisation of the vexed and long delayed issue of Warranty Clause for HAL products; finalization of the long case of the Base Year Price revision for HAL products & supplies; getting the Govt letter issued as the first among the Services on the enhanced delegation of financial for IAF; introduction of Resource Management Concept to bring in cost consciousness at AF Stns; extending the Unit Costing System to all AF Stns and streamlining the utilization of the Foreign Travel Budget at Air HQ.

Air Vice Marshal Narayanan Vijayakumar VSM has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Vijay Kumar Dayalu 13096 ADMUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Vijay Kumar Dayalu VSM & Bar (13096) Adm was commissioned in the Administrative branch of the IAF on 17 Jun 72. He has held the appointments of Camp Commandant Air HQ, Chief Administrative Officer of two Stations, Senior Personnel Staff Officer, President, Central Airmen Selection Board (CASB) and Comm andant, Air Force Administrative College (AFAC) prior to his present appointment of ACAS (Air Force Works). He is a graduate of the DSSC. He was awarded VSM in 1994 and Bar to VSM in 2004.

A versatile, innovative and self motivated administrative officer, he has consistently exhibited a very high degree of professionalism and administrative acumen through out career. In the last two tenures as President CASB and Commandant AFAC, his administrative abilities have been par excellence. As the President CASB he was the singular driving force in changing the very face of airmen selections by introducing many innovations to strengthen the selection process. At AFAC as the Commandant, he has been singularly instrumental in imple menting the 'task directive' for introduction of distance learning in training of officers of all branches. In addition to this challenging task AVM Dayalu also set up the Ex-Servicemen Contributory Health Scheme at Coimbatore in an exemplary manner which has benefited the ex-servicemen community immensely.

As the ACAS (Air Force Works) his in-depth knowledge, ingenuity and meticulous planning have ensured initiation of a vast variety of infrastructural works keeping pace with the induction of the latest high-tech systems for the modernization of the Air Force. A close watch on the Special Projects and carry over liabilities has ensured proper utilization of the allotted funds. His analytical approach has constantly spurred his team successfully launch the largest ever Capital Works Plan of the Indian Air Force in 2006-07. This has resulted in providing a threshold to the ever growing modernization needs of Air Force.

He has held additional charge in the duties of President of Defence Services Officers' Institute and has been a very active member in the Air Force Naval Housing Board. His appreciation of the complexities in both these areas was complete. With this, he has provided catalytic directions for the cohesive coordination to the members who benefited from these ventures.

Air Vice Marshal Vijay Kumar Dayalu VSM & Bar has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Amarsingh Ganpatrao Patil 13272 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Amarsingh Ganpatrao Patil was commissioned as a fighter pilot on 23 Dec 72. He has held several important command and staff appointments. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor and a graduate of DSSC.

During his tenure as a flying instructor, he was commended by CAS for matured handling of an emergency involving a foreign student. As a Pechora Squadron Commander, his Squadron was put on the front bench of operational preparedness and assessed as 'Average Plus' by DASI. During his tenure as a Station Commander of a forward Air Defence Direction Centre, his Station was adjudged as the 'Best Control & Reporting Unit' of the Air Force for its overall operational efficiency and prompt deployment during 'Operation Vijay'. During 'Operation Parakram' as Chief Operation Officer of a forward base in the Kashmir valley, he played a pivotal role in deployment of all incoming and outgoing friendly forces in the most effective manner, thus ensuring overall Operational Readiness in the shortest possible time. The Station won the 'Best Operational Wing Trophy' of Western Air Command during his tenure as COO

Air Officer Commanding of a premier fighter base, his inimitable working style and dynamic leadership has continued to contribute towards betterment of working culture and enhanced productivity. The Station has flown a mammoth 10000 hours of flying on the age old MiG-21 (Type-77) and the Chetak/Cheetah helicopter fleets in 18 months. All the courses doing MiG Operational Flying Training have passed out ahead of schedule and additional flying effort was made available for pilots from other Commands. The base under his regime has also done benevolent service to civilians by way of evacuating 108 serious causalities from remote and inaccessible parts of the eastern region by helicopters. All this was possible by his ability to improvise, innovate, guide and motivate his personnel. To cater for futuristic requirements of operations by modern civil & military aircraft from his base, he has worked out a detailed plan to build the requisite infrastructure. In the recent past, as part of Platinum Jubilee Celebration year of the IAF, his Station was tasked to participate in fly-past and undertake arrangements for aerobatic displays. With meticulous planning, right delegation and coordination, these tasks were befittingly carried out to project the true spirit and glorious traditions of the IAF. The Station during his regime has bagged trophies for the Best Fighter Squadron, Best Helicopter Unit, Best Radar Unit, and the pivoted Best Operational Station of the Eastern Air Command.

Air Commodore Amarsingh Ganpatrao Patil has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Ravi Kant Srivastava 13312 AELUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore (now Air Vice Marshal) Ravi Kant Srivastava (13312) AE (L) was commissioned in Engineering Branch of IAF on 01 Jan 73. In his 34 years of service, he has held various important appointments like Principal Director Engg D at Air HQ, Chief Engineering Officer at Air Force Station Borjhar and Director Signal Intelligence at Army HQ. He also has the distinction of commanding a Wireless Experimental unit and an Air Force Liaison Establishment. Presently, he is posted as Air Officer Commanding of a premier Base Repair Depot.

As Chief Engineering Officer, Air Force Station Borjhar, he ensured smooth Induction of Mi-17 helicopters in a Helicopter Unit. He is one of the pioneers of the Boeing 737 Flight of Air HQ Communication Squadron maint enance team which took up the task of induction and setting up infrastructure for servicing. For his organizing acumen and vision he was especially selected to head the Dte of Eng D. As Principal Director Engg D, he was chiefly instrumental in guiding and coordinating a plethora of activities to transform the Dte of Eng D into a professional team. He was also tasked to review technical Air Force Orders at Air HQ which he accomplished in a professional manner.

Air Commodore RK Srivastava is a hardcore professional with high level of dedication, devotion and 'Never Say Die' attitude. Due to exemplary military leadership qualities, clubbed with his inherent engineering skill, the BRD has grown from strength to strength and developed innovative techniques, modern tooling to reclaim few expensive parts of the helicopter aggregated which were otherwise being rendered Cat 'E' and procured from abroad. This has resulted in saving of foreign exchange. His proactive, constructive and visionary approach has resulted in an overall improvement in work culture and productivity of the BRD inspite of spares crunch thereby generating a professional work ethos at the depot. The BRD under his leadership has been adjudged as “Best Aircraft Maintenance Support BRD" in the year 2006.

Air Commodore Ravi Kant Srivastava has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Anil Chopra 13368 F(P)Unit : AOC J&K  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Anil Chopra (13368) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying (Pilot) on 02 Jun 73. In his 34 years of his career he has held important appointments which include command of a premier fighter Sqn, Chief Ops Officer and AOC of a major fighter station. He was also the Team Leader of the MiG-21 Bis upgrade project in Russia and Commandant of the prestigious Aircraft and Systems Testing Establishment. Since Sep 06 he has been the Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Jammu & Kashmir. The air officer is a QFI, Test Pilot, IRIE, and has done staff college. In all these courses he has distinguished himself. He was awarded Vayu Sena Medal in 1989 and Vishisht Seva Medal in 1996.

As AOC J&K he commands a large geographical area with six flying stations and Tactical Air Centers under him. J&K is one area which has witnessed continuous live operations in the Counter Insurgency grid and in Siachen, and IAF aircraft are regularly operating right up to the line of control. In this entire area, the Civil Govt, the para military forces, and the Indian Army are dependent through the year on the Air operations.

The Air officer has been working very closely with Northern Army Command and has taken the initiative to have a fresh look at all joint operational procedures and documents. He has worked towards greatly reducing airborne response time for both the Counter Insurgency operations and the casualty evacuation. The IAF has not only met all the targets of Air maintenance for the year but has actually exceeded by nearly 1000 tons. The Air Officer's performance in the Air Force Exercise Gagan Shakti as Red Force Commander North was indeed commendable. The Air officer leads from the front and uses his vast experience to resolve all issues at his level.

Last winter saw extended closure of the National Highway between Jammu-Srinagar. Also, bad weather isolated many remote areas of the state, especially in higher Himalayas. His leadership and personal involvement in OP Humsafar was commended in writing by the Chief Minister. The Air officer has repeatedly shown selfless devotion to the service, and exemplary courage and professional excellence of the highest order which are in keeping with the best traditions of the IAF.

Air Vice Marshal Anil Chopra, VM, VSM has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Chinnabhandar Narasingara Ranganath 13471 AELUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Chinnabhandar Narasingara Ranganath VSM (13471) AE (L) was commissioned in the IAF on 01 Jul 72. He is a graduate of DSSC and is also a qualified Flight Test instrumentation Engineer (FTIE). He has held many important field and staff appointments which include Senior Test Engineer and Chief Research and Project Officer at Aircraft and Systems Testing Establishment (ASTE), JD of Air Staff Requirements at Air HQ, Chief Engg Officer at one of the premier fighter bases in the eastern sector and Command Technical Training Officer at HQ Training Command. He was commended by the Chief of Air Staff in 1991 and was awarded the Vishisht Seva Medal for distinguished service in 1999. Presently, he is the Air Officer Commanding of a Base Repair Depot (BRD) at Air Force Station, Sulur since 07 Mar 05. After assuming command of BRD, Air Cmde Ranganath steered the depot towards attaining the highest standards of professional excellence resulting in the depot being awarded the Best Aircraft BRD trophy in Maintenance Command for the year 2006. Under his dynamic and able leadership, wide ranging improvements have been made in the working as well as the living environment at the depot which has boosted the morale of all sections of depot personnel. His pioneering effort in providing guest hose facilities for DSC personnel and their families at the depot has been considered by AOCin-C, Maintenance Command as worthy of emulation by other units. It is entirely due to his tenacious approach and determined efforts that Sulur is the first station where the Married Accommodation Project for PBORs has been completed and taken over.

As the AOC of BRD, the air officer is also responsible for providing various administrative services to co-located Wing and its lodger units, but under the functional and administrative control of Southern Air Command. He has displayed exceptional management skills, sagacity, tact and maturity in not only providing efficient admin services but also in providing a harmonious living environment and promoting healthy camaraderie among all personnel at the air force station.

Air Commodore Chinnabhandar Narasingara Ranganath VSM has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Marshal Pramod Vasant Athawale 13472 AELUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Pramod Vasant Athawale VSM (13472) AE (L) was commissioned in the Aeronautical Engineering (Electronics) branch of IAF on 02 Jul 73. Over the years he has distinguished himself with significant contribution in a wide variety of assignments like Aircraft & Systems maintenance and flight testing, Software development and project management. He was awarded Vishisht Seva Medal in 1997.

The Air Officer has been one of the pioneers of software initiative in the IAF. From 1992 to 96, as the first Commanding Officer of Software Development Institute, he undertook a variety of software projects and laid a sound foundation for the in-house avionics software capability in IAF. During 2002-03, as the Chief Engineering Officer of the largest MiG-21 operating base, the officer brought in quiet assurance to the maintenance activity on the base. He streamlined processes bringing up execution and management synergy from a large group of maintenance personnel to improve safety and reliability with enhanced operational productivity.

As Principal Director Ground Electronics at Air HQ, the officer managed the largest set of Systems inventories. He put in exceptional efforts to progress various schemes especially worthy of mention are commissioning of ARSR, SRE and PAR radars; maintenance facilities for EW equipment and repair and overhaul of ST-68 radars.

Air Vice Marshal to his credit has had successful management of vital projects. During 1998-99, as Project Director, he steered the delayed 'Low Level Radar Networking' project to culmination and operationalised the system. More recently in 200506, as the Principal Director of Integrated Air Command and Control System (IACCS) project he has guided the team, during design and prototyping phase through exceptionally sincere efforts, and placed the project on the envisaged roadmap. As Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Sigs & IT), currently he steers the challenging Networking and IT projects, besides overseeing the operational aspects of Communications and IT for the whole IAF.

Air Vice Marshal Pramod Vasant Athawale VSM has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Anil Kumar Khosla 13534 AELUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Vice Marshal Anil Kumar Khosla VSM (13534) AE (L) was commissioned on 07 Jan 74 in the Engineering Branch of the IAF. In 33 years of distinguished service, he has held several important field, command and staff appointments that include Senior Engineer (Electronic Warfare) of a Fighter Base, Chief Technical Officer of Air Defence Radar, Command Systems Officer at two command HQs, Director Training at Air HQ, Station Commander of a tropo unit and Air Officer Commanding of Base Repair Depot (BRD). He is an alumnus of the College of Defence Management.

He is the pioneer of Mirage-2000 Laser Designation Pod (LDP) infrastructure. Subsequent to training in France (Thomson-CSF), he set up state-of-the-art servicing bays of LDP and other EW assets in an exemplary manner. These facilities have become the benchmark for all EW systems inducted subsequently in IAF. His engineering acumen in carrying out indigenous repairs of LDP, resulted in savings of 0.36 million French Francs. His contribution towards modernization of Training Institutes won accolades from all quarters. For the distinguished services rendered, he was awarded VSM in 2002.

While being the Station Commander of Air Force Station Jaipur, he successfully ensured 100% serviceability and high morale of personnel during the subtle phase of post Dec 2001. He was instrumental in acquiring a niche of concessions for IAF from Rajasthan Government. As Air Officer Commanding of a BRD, he inducted many new repair lines and noteworthy field repairs resulting in high serviceability of two vital radars and other communication facilities. He was instrumental in working out “Capacity Assessment" of the BRD, which paid handsome dividends to improve overall production. Indigenisation and innovations undertaken under his guidance have resulted in saving of Rs 25 lakhs in foreign exchange. Under his command, the BRD was declared the best BRD for the year 2003-04. AVM Khosla was appointed as Senior Maintenance Staff Officer of Western Air Command (WAC) on 01 Aug 06. His professional competence, proactive actions with dynamism and perseverance in maintaining constant liaison with Air HQ and various agencies like HAL, BEL and DRDO labs have directly contributed towards the operational capability of the command. The successful performance of WAC during the Gagan Shakti in Sep 06 and various other major exercises bear testimony to the significant contribution by him. The excellent conduct of Air Force Day Parade first time at Air Force Station Hindon in 2006 and the President's Fleet review at Air Force Station Chandigarh in Mar 07 are some of the vivid examples of his all round organizing capabilities to accomplish any challenge task.

Air Vice Marshal Anil Kumar Khosla VSM has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
AVM Raj Kumar Vashisht 13832 AEMUnit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Raj Kumar Vashisht (13832) AE (L) was commissioned as an engineer in the Aeronautical Branch on 06 Jan 75. He has held important appointments of Engineering Officer/Senior Technical Officer of MiG 21 and Mirage-2000 Sqns, Chief Engineering Officer (CEO) of a flying Station, CO of TETTRA School and Base Repair Depot (BRD) and Command Engineering Officer at two Command Headquarters.

As CO, Mirage Tettra School, Gwalior, he instituted effective steps to provide high quality training and brought improvement in overall availability of training aids. He ensured well coordinated control of all engineering activities in support of Op Safed Sagar as CEO at AF Station, Adampur. Final outcome of operations brought laurels to the Indian Air Force. High quality maintenance practices followed at Air Force Station, Adampur brought Best Maintenance Trophy of WAC for two consecutive years. Maintenance Control Centre (MCC) was declared the Centre of Excellence and was replicated on all the bases under HQ WAC.

With his technical expertise and ingenuity as CO of BRD, he could tide over the shortage of spares with indigenisation of critical items and developing new repair schemes to recover Cat-D rotables. These successful efforts saved the exchequer a substantial amount in foreign exchange against imports. Under his leadership, the Depot achieved peak production of all types of aero-engines and was adjudged second best BRD.

In his present appointment of C Eng O, HQ EAC, despite severe constrains of remote locations, adverse weather and poor connectivity, with high level of professional command and control over all aircraft maintenance activities of Eastern Air Command, he ensured that the serviceability and availability of various fleets reached to high levels for the first time. A large number of unserviceable aircraft were brought on line to meet the time bound training tasks which resulted in higher utilisation of the assets. He organised various workshops at the operating bases to bring about high level of maintenance practices amongst technical personnel, thereby achieving better safety standards. With his active supervision and involvement, three international exercises, COPE INDIA, SINDEX and GARUDA III, were successfully conducted at Air Force Station, Kalaikunda.

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

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Ujjal Prabhat Biswas 14090 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Ujjal Prabhat Biswas (14090) F (P) was commissioned into the IAF on 11 Jul 75 in the flying branch. He has been the Air Officer Commanding (AOC) of Air Force Station, Pathankot during the period 02 Jan 2006-30 Apr 2007. The air officer is a Fighter Combat Leader and an A2 Qualified Instructor and has flown over 4200 h on various aircraft types. In the Sqn Ldr rank, he has been commended twice by AOsC-inC and once by the CAS. He is a winner of the 'Scudder Medal' at the DSSC for standing first in the M.Sc degree course and is also the first armed forces officer to be deputed for a 'higher' course of instruction in Japan, in which he excelled. The officer has had a distinguished career during which he has done a number of operational commands (two fighter squadrons and an operational flying base), been an instructor (in the Flying Instructors' School and the College of Air Warfare) and held important Staff assign ments in Air HQ (in the Directorates of Personnel and Flying Training).

During the period 1995-1997, as the CO of a MiG-29 squadron he achieved all flying and other commitments in a commendable manner that included operational flying during the developments in the Kutch area in end 1996 and leading the MiG-29 fleet for flypast over Rajpath during the Republic Day. The tenure culminated with his squadron being declared as the 'Best Fighter Squadron' for the year 1997.

For his high professional competence, the air officer was selected as a member of the Expert Committee on Aircraft Accidents (EXCOM) in 2005. He made significant contribution by carrying out extensive study and analysis of aircraft accidents and suggesting remedial measures. It was after the implementation of the EXCOM that there has been a significant reduction of flying accidents in the IAF.

During 2006-2007 as the AOC of Air Force Station Pathankot, an operational base on the Pakistan border, he led from the front and achieved very high all-round standards. He undertook active flying and also participated in the air-to-ground gunnery meet on the MiG-21 aircraft. The excellent performance of the air officer was ratified by the Directorate of Air Staff Inspection when it graded the forward base he led and all the operational flying squadrons located at the base as 'Average Plus' in all aspects viz. Operations, Maintenance and Administration which is a rare achievement.

Air Commodore Ujjal Prabhat Biswas has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Devinder Singh 14284 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Devinder Singh VM VSM (14284) F (P) was commissioned on 13 Dec 75 in the flying branch of the Indian Air Force. During 32 years of his distinguished service, he has held several important command and staff appointments that include command of a MiG 23 BN fighter squadron, Chief Operations Officer of a frontline fighter base, Command Air Defence Officer at HQ Western Air Command and Defence Attaché to Embassy of India, Prague, Czech Republic. He is a Staff College graduate and a highly experienced Cat A Qualified Flying Instructor with 4600 hours of accident free flying to his credit. He was commended by the Chief of Air Staff in 1986 and was awarded VSM in year 1997 and VM in year 2000.

Air Cmde Devinder Singh took over as Air Officer Commanding of Air Force Station Jamnagar on 20 Jun 05. The station operates many flying and Air Defence units. With his involvement he ensured high serviceability state of their equipment due which all operational commitments were always success fully completed. Through good planning he brought about commendable and substantial changes in the infrastructure of the station. He motivated and encouraged his personnel to always rise to undertake any task.

Under his inspiration, the station developed two important softwares from within the local resources. One of these has been put into use at all stations of the IAF on instructions from Air Headquarters. The second is in final stages of completion dealing with aircraft maint enance. Under his supervision, the station helicopter units successfully rescued three pilots who had ejected-two over the sea and one at night dark phase. He was as also very successful in promoting sports and cultural activities on the station thereby giving opportunity to his personnel and their family members to display their talent.

Under leadership of Air Cmde Devinder Singh, AF Station Jamnagar won the Best Flying Station of IAF trophy for year 2005-06. His station was also adjudged the Best Station of South Western Air Command (SWAC) for year 2006.

Air Commodore Devinder Singh VM VSM has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Gurvinder Jeet Singh Cheema 14292 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Gurwinder Jeet Singh Cheema (14292) F (P) has been on the posted strength of Air Force Station Yelahanka as Air Officer Commanding since 01 July 05.

Air Cmde Cheema has been one of the pioneers of Mi 8/Mi 17 operations in Siachen Glacier. His experience is all encompassing varying from counter insurgency to low intensity conflict operations. As Flt Cdr of a frontline and the first armed Mi-17 unit, he was instrumental in optimising Mi-17 utilisation in Op Pawan (Sri Lanka) towards extensive logistic support, causality evacuat ion and offensive armament support operat ions by day as well as night. The task was accomplished without attrition or accident. He has over 5000 hrs of accident free flying to his credit with over 500 h of flying in Op Meghdoot area. Subsequently, as Sqn Cdr of a Mi-17 unit, he ensured a high operational state and sustained accident free flying for three consecutive years. In two years of command of a forward base in Op Meghdoot sector, he brought up the airfield infrastructure that facilitated night landings by transport aircraft despite diverse constraints.

On assuming command of AF Stn Yelahanka, he systematically analysed aspects requiring enhanced performance to keep pace with increased flying task. The station hosted the first National Geographic air show in 2005 that was marked with a tremendous response from the public. Despite the growing congestion in Bangalore airspace, he ensured conducive flying environment by proper coordination with civil agencies along side beefing up of own support services. The station undertook approx 20,000 hours of flying during the year 2006 which is a land mark accomplishment. His thrust on infrastructure development and improvement of working as well living environment furthered station's output and morale. Concurrently, he relentlessly pursued preparations for Aero India 2007 and ensured continued and sustained liaison with civil, military and associated organisations to wards successful culmination of the show. His proactive approach and acumen for efficient management of resources ensured a secure and conducive environment for the five day long air exposition. As the AOC of the host station, he maximised the output by delegating responsibilities to sub-committees after meticulous scrutiny of detailed action plan. Tasks entrusted to the station were flawlessly executed and were appreciated by Indian and for- eign dignitaries. The biennial air show was a resounding success with an all time high participation from Indian and Foreign entrepreneurs.

Air Commodore Gurwinder Jeet Singh Cheema has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Ati Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Shamsher Jang Bahadur 14570 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Shamsher Jang Bahadur (14570) F (P) was commissioned on 16 Jun 76 in transport stream of the Flying Branch of the IAF. In 30 years of distinguished service he has commanded Communication Flight and the oldest transport (AN-32) Squadron, and held important staff appointments at Air HQ and Command HQ. A postgraduate of DSSC and alumnus of the National Defence College he has been twice awarded Commendations by CAS and once by AOC-in-C. A Flying Instructor with over 6700 hours of accident free flying, he has taken active part in Op Pawan, Op Prakaram and planning of Op Safed Sagar. Air Cmde SJ Bahadur was appointed the Air Officer Commanding of the largest Air Force Base of the IAF on 14 Nov 05. Under his leadership the aircraft of this base participated in various exercises and aerial displays at home and abroad that brought laurels to the IAF. Aircrew qualification status and the operational preparedness of all the four flying units of this base improved considerably, and the Paratroopers Training School surpassed the previous record of highest number of jumps.

His proactive liaison and exploitation of BSNL schemes resulted in net saving of over Rs 19, 55,975/- to the Air Force this year. He ensured that the prestigious events like Centre for Air Power Studies Seminar, visits of Global Chiefs and other foreign delegations were conducted in a befitting manner bringing honours to the IAF.

He with his foresight, perseverance and total involvement provided impetus to the achievements of Air Force Station, Agra. Under his stewardship, the station won coveted trophies for Best in Air Force Land Line Competition, Pride of Central Air Command, Best in Operations and the Best Transport/Helicopter Squadron of Central Air Command for the year 2006-07.

Air Commodore Shamsher Jang Bahadur has thus rendered distinguished service of an exceptional order.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Shaurya Chakra
Wg Cdr Anil Kumar 20742 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Anil Kumar and Wing Commander Rahul Monga were detailed as crew of an IAF microlight aircraft for proceeding on a “'Round-the-world” expedition from 01 June 2007 to 19 August 2007. The expedition flew 10,529 Km, landed at 85 destinations in 19 countries and created a new world record of circumnavigating the world in 80 days, battering the previous world record of 99 days. The mission was flown in a single engine unpressurised aircraft weighing less than 300 Kg, without any redundancy features.

Both the officers faced adverse weather, unfamiliar operating environment and harsh terrain ranging from sub-zero Arctic to scorching deserts and tropical rainforests knowing fully well that survival in case of any eventuality would have been extremely challenging. In these harsh conditions both the officers not only displayed exceptional courage but also professionalism and airmanship of an extremely high order. Inspite of facing severe weather and life threatening technical malfunctions in the small aircraft they continued steadfast in his task despite the risk to their lives, with the aim of bringing glory to the nation and to the IAF.

Wing Commander Anil Kumar and Wing Commander Rahul Monga, thus, displayed thoroughbred soldierly attitude, and conspicuous gallantry in the face of highly challenging task.

Reference: Notification No. 25-Pres/2008 dated 26th January, 2008 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 10th May, 2008. 

Shaurya Chakra
Wg Cdr Rahul Monga 20768 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Anil Kumar and Wing Commander Rahul Monga were detailed as crew of an IAF microlight aircraft for proceeding on a “'Round-the-world” expedition from 01 June 2007 to 19 August 2007. The expedition flew 10,529 Km, landed at 85 destinations in 19 countries and created a new world record of circumnavigating the world in 80 days, battering the previous world record of 99 days. The mission was flown in a single engine unpressurised aircraft weighing less than 300 Kg, without any redundancy features.

Both the officers faced adverse weather, unfamiliar operating environment and harsh terrain ranging from sub-zero Arctic to scorching deserts and tropical rainforests knowing fully well that survival in case of any eventuality would have been extremely challenging. In these harsh conditions both the officers not only displayed exceptional courage but also professionalism and airmanship of an extremely high order. Inspite of facing severe weather and life threatening technical malfunctions in the small aircraft they continued steadfast in his task despite the risk to their lives, with the aim of bringing glory to the nation and to the IAF.

Wing Commander Anil Kumar and Wing Commander Rahul Monga, thus, displayed thoroughbred soldierly attitude, and conspicuous gallantry in the face of highly challenging task.

Reference: Notification No. 25-Pres/2008 dated 26th January, 2008 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 10th May, 2008. 

Shaurya Chakra
Sqn Ldr Shantanu Basu 22947 F(P)Unit : No.114 Helicopter Unit  Award Date 11 Apr 07 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

On 11 April 2007, Squadron Leader Basu was detailed for an air logistic sortie to Amar helipad located on the Siachen Glacier, as the leader in two aircraft formation. Flying over this vast frozen ice mass entails flying in the extremes of climatic conditions over exceedingly inhospitable terrain.

The sortie was uneventful till final approach. On short finals, an overshoot had to be initiated as tail winds were encountered. The helicopter experienced a sudden loss of power and height after crossing the helipad. Sqn Ldr Basu maintained his cool in the unusual emergency and handled the situation in a competent manner displaying a high degree of professionalism. He asked his copilot to keep a close check on the engine parameters and initially tried to recover the aircraft by reducing the power demand smoothly. The engine jet pipe temperature (JPT) also shot up. Unfortunately, the JPT failed to respond to the emergency actions by the pilot and the aircraft contintued to lose height. He therefore took the highly courageous decision of attempting to force land across the Actual Ground Position Line. However, due to the absence of a suitable force landing field in the harsh, snow bound and sloping terrain, the helicopter crashed having no chance of survival of the crew.

Squadron Leader Shantanu Basu displayed exceptional courage and gallantry in the face of imminent death in dangerous circumstances beyond the call of duty.

Reference: Notification No. 164-Pres/2007 dated 15th August, 2007 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 17th November, 2007. 

Shaurya Chakra
Sqn Ldr Pranay Kumar 25603 F(P)Unit : -N.A.- Award Date 02 Sep 07 Announced 15 Aug 08
Details :

On 02 September 2007, Squadron Leader Pranay Kumar was detailed as an additional pilot for a rescue mission. The mission entailed winching up of a citizen stranded in the middle of a gorge of Chambal river affected by flash floods. The prevailing conditions of total darkness were not conducive for operations with unaided vision. The crew took a decision to proceed with the mission on Night Vision Goggles (NVGs) which provided them with better situational awareness.

When the winch cradle was lowered, the survivor could not strap himself to the winch due to extreme fatigue caused by battling the water currents for over six hours. At this juncture, Sqn Ldr Pranay Kumar immediately volunteered to go down to rescue the survivor. Knowing fully well the perils to his own life, he briefed the Flight Gunners on emergency signals and got lowered in the gorge. He guided the crew of the helicopter using hand signals and inspite the darkness and strong water current, managed to reach the survivor. On reaching the survivor he realised that the space was insufficient to get down for strapping the survivor to the harness. He instantly look the decision to physically tie the survivor to himself. Having done this while being half immersed in the strong flow of the water, he gripped the survivor and holding onto him tightly, signalled the Flight Gunner to winch them up. Using all the physical strength that he could muster, Sqn Ldr Pranay Kumar success fully held onto the survivor till the end of the rescue operation.

Squadron Leader Pranay Kumar displayed extra ordinary courage and valouy in adverse circumstances while trying to save the lives of fellow citizens.

Reference: Notification No. 106-Pres/2008 dated 15th August, 2008 published in Part 1, Section 1, Gazette of India dated 8th November, 2008. 

Yudh Seva Medal
Gp Capt Atanu Guru 16794 F(P)Unit : MONUC  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Group Captain Atanu Guru VrC (16794) Flying (Pilot) was commissioned as a Helicopter Pilot in the flying Branch on 04 Jun 82. A Qualified Flying Instructor with over 5550 h of flying, he has commanded an operational helicopter unit and has been a Directing Staff at DSSC. He has been the Contingent Commander of the Indian Aviation Contingent at Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo, and is currently the CO of the Mi-35 Attack Helicopter Sqn based at Goma, He as awarded VrC in 1990 for display of conspicuous gallantry.

On 25 Nov 06, in a swift and violent move, rebel groups occupied Sake, a town near Goma. The situation rapidly escalated adversely with Goma town itself coming under an imminent treat of being taken over by the rebels. The situation was critical, the operating conditions marginal and the resources meagre. He involved himself in the joint planning with the Indian Brigade Commander and charted a robust, yet UN sensitive operational plan, synergising mission accomplishment with basic UN ethos of proportional force, least collateral damage and no attrition. He led from the front, carrying out missions by day and night in inclement weather conditions, undeterred by hostile fire from the rebels. Manning the Operations Room while not flying, he was personally directing the pilots airborne, and monitoring every move of the attack helicopters and the ground forces. Throughout the operations, he brought his experience to bear in a critical environment where a measured, but effective response was required, ensuring that no fratricide took place. He took calculated and judicious risks in launching the missions in adverse conditions of high altitude, poor visibility and persistent spells of rain and thunderstorms. Through his deft handling of the rapidly changing situation, he ensured that the scant helicopter resources were optionally utilized to blunt the rebel offensive, both through offensive engagement and conveying crucial inputs on rebel movements to the ground forces. This demolished the game plan of the rebels and they were forced to retreat. Thus, not only did Comma remain secure, but Sake and the nearby ridges too were flushed off the rebels.

Group Captain Guru is a decorated veteran of the Indian Peace Keeping Force at Sri Lanka, where he operated a similar attack helicopter. Both MONUC and North Kivu Brigade have roundly complimented his professional acumen and the excellent synergy in operations with the Indian Army Brigade. His ability to remain focused and clam in challenging situations has indeed been exemplary.

For his steadfast resolve in face of adversity, inspirational leadership, commendable contribution too peace enforcement operations in the region, and distinguished service of a high order, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Yudh Seva Medal' to Group Captain Atanu Guru VrC.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg Cdr Nilanjan Biswas 18081 F(P)Unit : 1 Base Repair Depot  Award Date 28 Mar 07 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Nilanjan Biswas (18081) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of a Base Repair Depot (BRD) since 27 Sep 04 as Chief Test Pilot.

On 28 Mar 07, Wg Cdr Biswas undertook the first post production sortie on AN-32 aircraft after major overhaul. On completion of air test profile, during rejoin when the undercarriage was lowered, the port and nose wheel undercarriage locked down, however, the starboard undercarriage was stuck in the up position. All emergency actions failed to lower the starboard undercarriage. Additional actions including landing the aircraft on port wheel only and a go around were not effective.

This emergency was unprecedented in the history of AN-32 operation with the IAF. Wg Cdr Biswas did not get perturbed by such a grave emergency and decided to carry out an emergency landing on port wheel and nose wheel only. Under such a condition the aircraft could easily get out of control and crash, leading to catastrophic consequences for both the occupants as well as the aircraft. He landed the aircraft with minimal fuel and on touch down switched off the engines. On the landing roll, he controlled the aircraft in such a way that it remained on the runway for most part of the landing roll and the right wing was lowered to touch the ground only at very low speeds. Thus, the aircraft suffered minimal damage only on the starboard wing tip and rear fuselage with no damage to the engines. The damages to aircraft are repairable at site. No damages were suffered by the aero engine and the propeller of the aircraft. Throughout the flying Wg Cdr Biswas was in control of the situation and his cockpit resource management was immaculate. His professionalism and courage in handling of the emergency saved the airmen from loss of life as well as extensive damage to the aircraft.

For this act of exceptional courage, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Wing Commander Nilanjan Biswas.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Wg Cdr Ajay Shukla 18793 F(P)Unit : MONUC  Award Date 25 Nov 06 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details : Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of Personnel Holding Section, on deputation to the UN Mission in Congo since 27 Feb 06. He is working as a squadron pilot in the Mi-35 Attack Helicopter Squadron at Goma.

On 25 Nov 06, a renegade warlord made deep advances towards Goma town, with the town coming under an imminent threat of being taken over. The Mi-35 attack helicopters were immediately pressed into action to prevent the fall of Goma. Leading from the front, Wg Cdr Ajay Shukla got airborne for fire support and reconnaissance in support of the Indian Brigade. In face of repeated hostile fire from the rebels on his helicopter, including that by Rocket Propelled Grenades, he remained undeterred and continued with the mission. Soon he detected heavy militia activity inside a well camouflaged camp and targeted it successfully with 57 mm rockets, leading to destruction of a key rebel command centre. This action by Wg Cdr Shukla delivered a crippling blow to the rebels and precipitated a severe disruption in their co­ordinated offensive. He flew a total of 10 crucial operational sorties, both by day and night. The sorties were carried out in very demanding conditions of hazardous terrain, inclement weather and enemy action. An experienced pilot on Night Vision Goggles, Wg Cdr Shukla was also at the forefront of all night operations. He took calculated risks and displayed exceptional skills in handling the night targeting devices to effectively scan for movement of rebels on the critical nights of 26 and 27 Nov 06. Crucial inputs provided by him exposed the game plan of the advancing rebels and enabled immediate friendly reinforcements to be sent. Throughout the operations, his accurate weapon delivery had a devastating effect on the vanguard rebel elements threatening Goma and on their camps being used for reinforcements, thereby, preventing Goma town from falling into the hands of the rebels and helping recover Sake town.

Wg Cdr Shukla is a very qualified and extremely professional Air Warrior. During this crisis, his gallant contribution towards keeping Goma town secure from the rebels has been exceptional. His actions have won accolades from all quarters for the IAF and have contributed immensely towards UN efforts at peace enforcement in this troubled region.

For this act of exceptional courage and steadfast resolve in face of adversity during the operations, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Wing Commander Ajay Shukla.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)
Flt Lt Amit Sharma 26715 F(P)Unit : No.114 Helicopter Unit  Award Date 11 Apr 07 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Flight Lieutenant Amit Sharma (26715) Flying (Pilot) was on the posted strength of a Cheetah Helicopter Unit at Air Force Station Leh since 17 Jul 06.

On 11 Apr 07, Flt Lt Sharma was detailed for an air logistics support sortie to Amar helipad located on the Siachen Glacier, as the co­pilot in the No.l of a two aircraft formation. The Siachen Glacier is the highest battlefield in the world. Flying over this vast frozen ice mass entails flying in the extremes of climatic conditions over exceedingly inhospitable terrain. The margin for error in this environment, while flying the single engine Cheetah aircraft, is practically nonexistent. Amar post has the highest helipad in the world with density altitude exceeding twenty thousand feet and is located on the Actual Ground Position Line (AGPL). The sortie was uneventful till final approach. On short finals, an overshoot had to be initiated as tail winds were encountered. The helicopter experienced a sudden loss of power and height after crossing the helipad. The engine jet pipe temperature (JPT) also shot up. In spite of the best efforts of the pilots, the aircraft crashed about 300 meters ahead of Amar helipad, in direct line of sight of the Pakistani post.

Flt Lt Sharma maintained his cool in this unusual emergency and handled the situation in a competent manner displaying a high degree of professionalism. He kept a close check on the engine parameters and assisted the captain in attempting to recover the aircraft. He also cautioned the captain about the unusually high JPT. Unfortunately, the JPT failed to respond to the emergency actions by the pilots and the aircraft continued to lose height. The pilots therefore took the highly courageous decision of attempting to force land across the AGPL. However due to the absence of a suitable force landing field in the harsh, snow bound and sloping terrain, the helicopter crashed, giving no chance of survival to the crew. Flt Lt Sharma, a true air warrior, made the supreme sacrifice in the service of the country, displaying exceptional courage beyond the call of duty in the best traditions of the IAF.

For this act of exceptional courage, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry)' to Flight Lieutenant Amit Sharma (Posthumously).

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Gp Capt Gurinder Pal Singh 15417 F(P)Unit : AFS Yelahanka  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Group Captain Gurinder Pal Singh (15417) Flying (Pilot) was commissioned on 07 July 1978. In 29 years of distinguished service, he has held several prestigious appointments that include Air Force Examiner on AN-32, Avro and Kiran aircraft at Aircrew Examining Board, CO HQ Central Air Command Communication Flight, Directing Staff at DSSC, DDPO (Transports) at Air HQ, Chief Operation Officer (COO) at AF Station Agra and CO of an AN-32 Squadron prior to his present appointment as the Chief Instructor at Fixed Wing Training Faculty (FWTF), AF Station Yelahanka.

He is an A-2 flying instructor. His leadership by example and management style were inspirational in stimulating his subordinates towards achieving higher goals and objectives. This is evident from the fact that a small unit like HQ CAC Comn Flt, under his command produced ten Qualified Flying and Navigation instructors. While in command of an AN32 Squadron, he simultaneously performed duties of COO at AF Stn Agra for almost a year. He once again exhibited the same zeal and professionalism in building up the ops status of the unit and achieved higher than the stated goals in the special role and formation flying.

He took over as Chief Instructor FWTF on 19 July 2004. His unflinching passion for excellence and professionalism was evident from the fact that in Jan 05, amidst hectic preparations for the Aero India, he wrote a service paper on review of transport pilot training at Yelahanka that effected in reduction in training duration by six months, despite an increase in solo content. The reviewed syllabi led to improvement in operational status and manning levels of the transport fleet due to early availability of transport pilots. This also facilitated increase in intake of transport pilot trainees, thereby complementing the long term induction plan of the IAF.

Under his leadership, the FWTF flew a mammoth 13,160 hrs in the year 2005, the highest ever by the faculty at Yelahanka. However, this record was surpassed in 2006 by flying 13,765 hrs, another remarkable feat. He is a systematic and meticulous individual himself, demanded high standards and exactitude in all spheres of flying activity, which resulted in award of the 'Training Command Flight Safety Trophy' to FWTF for the year 2004-05 and 2005-06, in succession. This was accomplished despite ongoing runway, tarmac and associated works services for Aero India 2005 and 2007. He was also instrumental in ensuring a sound Tarmac Management and a methodical Static Display during Aero India 2005 and 2007. His proactive participation in almost all spheres contributed significantly in smooth conduct of both the Air Shows.

For his exceptional devotion to duty, consummate leadership and exemplary professionalism, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Group Captain Gurinder Pal Singh.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Gp Capt Rajat Sharma 17008 F(P)Unit : No.44 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Group Captain Rajat Sharma (17008) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 29 Dec 82. During his 25 years of distinguished service he has held the challenging appointments of Flight Commander (Flt Cdr) of a premier Transport Sqn and Chief Operations Officer (COO) of two major airbases. He is presently commanding a Strategic Airlift Sqn and has 7400 h of accident free flying.

An accomplished professional, the officer was commended by the CAS in 1999 for professional competence. In 2001, as Flt Cdr, he carried out the path breaking night landings at high altitude airfields in Leh and Thoise on IL-76 thereby upgrading operational potential. As COO at Nagpur, despite manpower/infrastructure constraints, he displayed immense resourcefulness and ensured timely and safe induction of an IL-76 Sqn. At Agra, he was instrumental in enhancing operational effectiveness by resurrecting operations from blast pens and the Station was adjudged the "Pride of CAC".

On assuming command of an IL-76 Sqn, he resolved to improve the operational status of aircrew and aircraft serviceability, which had suffered after relocation of the Sqn and achieved laudable success on both fronts. The operational and categorization status of Sqn aircrew improved substantially in a short span of time as also the availability of aircraft facilitating achievement of all assigned tasks. A believer in leading from the front, he flawlessly executed the post hurricane relief operation to USA ordered at very short notice. During exercise 'Gagan Shakti' he ensured timely execution of all assigned missions despite resource constraints. With his innovative ideas and untiring effort, he started the Station Officers Mess and rapidly brought it up. It is his motivation, leadership and faith in subordinates that makes such demanding achievements possible. He has served the Air Force with dedication and outstanding professional integrity.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Group Captain Rajat Sharma.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Narmdeshwar Tiwari 18270 F(P)Unit : No.1 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Narmdeshwar Tiwari (18270) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 07 Jun 86. In the past he had held important appointments which include Directing Staff at DSSC, Test Pilot's School and Flt Cdr of Fighter Sqn. Presently he is the Commanding Officer of a Mirage-2000 Squadron since 13 Dec 04.

The officer has ensured a high degree of supervision in flying activities that has significantly contributed to an improvement in the quality of training. His hands on management style has been responsible for a perceptible improvement in the morale of the Sqn. A record number of upgradations of operational status of aircrew have been achieved in his tenure. The Sqn has also flown a record 4650 h, a perceptible increase over the past years thus resulting in 11 pilots achieving fully ops status during his tenure. More importantly, the task was achieved without a single accident. During his tenure, he also led numerous important detachments, involving foreign air forces like the USAF for Cope-India 05. The Sqn was one of the very few units that took part in all the three phases of the Air Force exercise where they performed very well in a variety of roles by both day and night. The task was achieved in a very professional manner.

On the maintenance side, he has used his expertise as a test pilot to study complex snags and suggest methods for effective technical management. This has resulted in a positive change that is visible on the tarmac as well as the maintenance line. He has taken active interest in pursuing administrative requirement for the Sqn, which has resulted in a vast improvement on the working environment of all the sections. The overall command and control exercised by him has produced a well knit and professionally potent unit.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Narmdeshwar Tiwari.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Nagesh Kapoor 18557 F(P)Unit : No.35 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Nagesh Kapoor (18557) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 06 Dec 86. He has held the appointments of Flt Cdr (Flt Cdr) of a MiG-29 Sqn and Senior Flight Safety and Inspection Officer (SFS&IO) of Air Force Station Adampur. Presently he is the CO of a MiG-21 Sqn. During his tenure as the Flt Cdr he was deployed at a forward air base for six months during 'Op Parakram'. During his tenure as the SFS&IO, the base had nil accidents/incidents attributable to human error. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor, Fighter Combat Leader and also a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College, having topped the course in 2003. He has over 2700 h of accident / incident free flying. He has been awarded twice with the 'Commendation by the CAS' and once with the 'Commendation by the AOC-in-C Western Air Command'.

During his present tenure as CO of a MiG21 Sqn, Wg Cdr N Kapoor has harnessed his resources in an exceptional manner. This has ensured that the Sqn flew almost twice as many hours in the last one year as compared to the previous year. His immaculate planning and foresight has ensured that the operational status of the Sqn has always been very high. There has been a period of almost one year in between wherein all pilots of the Sqn were operational and had current Instrument Rating. While achieving all of the above Wg Cdr Kapoor ensured a healthy and safe flying environment resulting in a nil accident rate.

During the recently concluded Command Gunnery Meet, Wg Cdr Kapoor's Sqn competed with the technologically superior Mirage and Jaguar Sqns. It is to the credit of his leadership and motivational capabilities that the Sqn emerged victorious in both the team events that it took part in. The Sqn also performed exceptionally well in the biannual inspection by the Directorate of Air Staff Inspection. During all detachments, exercises and inspections he has led from the front. During his tenure, the Sqn merged with another MiG-21 Sqn. His painstaking and tireless efforts ensured that the merger was smooth and the operational capability of the unit did not diminish even during the days of transition.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Nagesh Kapoor.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Awadesh Kumar Bharti 18781 F(P)Unit : No.30 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Awadesh Kumar Bharti (18781) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 13 Jun 87. In 20 years of distinguished service, the officer has crossed several important milestones. He is a Fighter Combat Leader and a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College. He was the Flight Commander of a Sukhoi-30MK Sqn. He has also held a staff appointment as the Joint Director of Air Defence operations at Air HQ. The officer has been awarded 'Three Stars' for accident free flying (superlative performance). He was also commended by the CAS in 1997 for dedication to duty.

Wg Cdr AK Bharti was appointed as the CO of a Sukhoi-30 MKI Sqn on 16 Aug 05. The Sukhoi-30 MKI Phase III aircraft have been inducted recently and he had the onerous responsibility of making the various weapon systems operational and evolving tactics for the same. In spite of numerous teething troubles that are bound to engulf a nascent fleet, by his effective leadership and innovative approach, he made the weapon systems operational in the shortest possible time frame. Tactics were also evolved to extract the maximum from this very versatile aircraft. Under his leadership, the Sqn successfully participated in an Air Force level exercise called Gagan Shakti and helped prove the evolving concept of 'Air Dominance Force'. The Sqn also won accolades after exercising with the Royal Air Force of United Kingdom during ExerciseIndradhanush 2006 and, with the French Air Force during Exercise-Garuda 2007.

The Sqn was inspected by the Directorate of Air Staff Inspection in Nov 06. The Sqn was assessed in a multitude of missions that the aircraft was capable of. In many of the crucial missions, the Sqn was assessed 'Above Average' and also 'Exceptional'. The Sqn achieved an overall grading of 'Average Plus'. All this was possible because of Wg Cdr Bharati's very high standards of professionalism and his able and dynamic leadership.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Awadesh Kumar Bharti.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Aman Nautiyal 18789 F(P)Unit : No.28 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Aman Nautiyal (18789) F (P) was commissioned on 13 Jun 87 in the Flying Branch. In 19 years of distinguished service, he has been a Directing Staff at Tactical and Air Combat Development Establishment (TACDE) for a period of seven years, during which he instructed 25 courses, and was instrumental in the initial spade-work for conduct of Helicopter Combat Leaders Courses. Additionally, his work for the smooth induction of the MiG21 up-graded Bison aircraft into TACDE has ensured that this aircraft is performing to the best of its abilities at this establishment. He was also part of the team that ensured great success for the IAF during Exercise Cope India-I (2005) with the USAF, wherein he was head of the White Force.

He is a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College where he stood overall second. He also underwent Fighter Combat Leader course where he stood first and won all the trophies at the end of the course. A highly experienced fighter pilot, he has more than 2350 h of accident/incident free flying to his credit. He was commended by the CAS in 2002.

Wg Cdr Aman Nautiyal was appointed the CO of a Frontline Fighter Sqn on 01 Jul 05. Till date, in spite of depleting seniority levels in the MiG-29 fleet, in terms of pilots, engineering officer and airmen, he has ensured good operational orientation of his squadron through comprehensive, meaningful and focused flying and ground training, while maintaining the highest standards of flight safety. By providing good leadership and harmonious functioning, he has ensured high morale and motivation and a positive vibe which bodes well for the future of his Sqn personnel. During the inspection by Directorate of Air Staff Inspections from Air HQs in April 2006, apart from displaying exceptional performance in the missions led by him, the Sqn was assessed 'Above Average' on the ground, and 'Average Plus' overall. Also he was assessed as exceptional by the Aircrew Examination Board (AEB) of Air HQs during Apr 06.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Aman Nautiyal.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Kenneth Allen 18805 F(P)Unit : No.127 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Kenneth Allen (18805) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 13 Jun 87.

He is presently on the posted strength of an operational Mi-17 Unit as the CO since 28 Apr 06. He is a Helicopter Combat Leader instructor who has been involved in formulation and development of helicopter tactics at Tactics and Air Combat Development Establishment and has been the Directing Staff of all Helicopter Combat Leader courses conducted till date. He was also a member of the first IAF Contingent for the United Nations mission to the Democratic Republic of Congo as the Flt Cdr of the Mi-25 Sqn.

During his tenure as CO, the unit has seen a marked improvement in operational orientation, maintenance and administration. The notable achievements of the unit have been the first ever casualty evacuation by night using Night Vision Goggles and first troop induction by night into Arunachal hills. Despite constraints of aircraft serviceability, he was instrumental in significant impr- ovement in the unit's operational status, quantum rise in operational role training by almost three times, night effort by two times and Night Vision Goggle training by almost eight times within the initial six months, and 100% categorisation of all unit aircrew within 10 months. All of this was achieved with nil accident and incident (human error). This could not have been possible, but for total involvement, meticulous planning, foresight of a high order and exceptional leadership displayed by Wg Cdr Allen, which ensured quality output from his subordinates.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Kenneth Allen.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Rajiva Ranjan 18810 F(P)Unit : MiG Operational Flying Training Unit  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Rajiva Ranjan (18810) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 13 Jun 87. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor, Fighter Combat Leader and a graduate of the DSSC. He has flown various variants of MiG21 and Mirage 2000 aircraft amassing a grand total of 3600 h of flying, which very few in his seniority bracket achieve. The officer has been commended by CAS in 1998 & 2003. He took over as CO of MOFTU 'A' on 06 Jun 05.

Wg Cdr Ranjan is a dynamic officer with exceptional professional knowledge and skills which he has achieved through hard work and perseverance. During his tenure as CO, he has led the unit from the front, individually flying more than 1050 sorties in less than two years. During the same period, the Sqn has flown a total of 6500 sorties, a feat very few fighter Sqns can be proud of. To achieve this feat, the Sqn maintained an average serviceability close to 85% on the ageing MiG-21 fleet and put a feather in its cap by achieving 100% serviceability for 26 days. He was also instrumental in carrying out the highest number of innovations by any Sqn in EAC. In addition to completing all the training tasks ahead of time, the Sqn also took part in a number of exercises at the Command level and played a vital role in the Jorhat and Guwahati fly pasts, as a part of the IAF awareness campaign. While achieving all this, the Sqn's track record of quality training and accident free flying stood testimony to his excellent supervision and management.

While according very high priority to quality training and operational preparedness of the Sqn, he never lost sight of the morale and welfare of his personnel. His concern, zeal and enthusiasm served as a great motivator to all air warriors. His regular involvement with all ranks also resulted in the Sqn reaching a very high degree of satisfaction level, in turn, leading to the Sqn being declared as the best fighter Sqn in EAC in 2005-06. Thus, this indefatigable and self-motivated officer has demonstrated an exceptional capacity to lead his men to better productivity under demanding and stressful conditions.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Rajiva Ranjan.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Kanthalloor Saraswathy Suresh Kumar 18822 F(P)Unit : No.9 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Kanthalloor Saraswathy Suresh Kumar (18822) F (P) was commissioned as a Fighter Pilot in the Flying Branch on 13 Jun 87.

He is presently the CO of a frontline Mirage Sqn. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor with more than 3500 h of accident free flying. He is a graduate of Defence Services Staff College and has held various important appointments prior to the present appointment. In 2004, he was commended by CAS for devotion to duty. He is one of the very few pilots to achieve more than 1000 h of accident free flying on Mirage-2000.

Under his command, he has been able to motivate the unit to a very high level of performance. The operational capabilities of the Sqn kept on improving along with the training of under trainee (U/T) pilots of the Sqn. The Sqn was appreciated by Air HQ and HQ CAC for involvement of Sqn in various out station commitments and progress of U/T pilots training. In the year 2006, he was given the responsibility of leading a combined Mirage -2000 detachment to Singapore for Exercise Sindex-06/ OS. The exceptional result achieved during the exercise is a result of his meticulous planning and thorough professionalism. Leading by example, Wing Commander Suresh has been able to instill confidence, enthusiasm and a sense of pride in his men, binding the unit into a strong and potent team of professionals. The Sqn being adjudged the best fighter Sqn in the Command bears testimony to this fact.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Kanthalloor Saraswathy Suresh Kumar.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Sunil Kashinath Vidhate 18825 F(P)Unit : No.29 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Sunil Kashinath Vidhate (18825) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 13 Jun 87. Presently, he is the Commanding Officer of a frontl ine Fighter Sqn since Mar 05.

Wg Cdr SK Vidhate has been a Joint Director in the Directorate of Personnel at Air HQ and a directing staff at the prestigious Tactics and Air Combat Development Establishment. He is a 'Pilot Attack Instructor', 'Fighter Strike Leader' and a graduate of Defence Services Staff College with Instructor grading. He was commended by AOC-in-C in 2001 for his immense contribution towards enhancement of squadron's war fighting ability. As 'Second in Command' of a MiG27 Sqn he was instrumental in earning his unit a rare distinction of 'Above the Average' grading in operational competence during the inspection by Directorate of Air Staff Inspection team in 2003.

This is the first MiG-27 Sqn selected to undergo indigenous avionics upgrade. Wg Cdr Vidhate, with his meticulous planning and resolute commitment, left no stone unturned in ensuring exemplary quality of upgraded aircraft and their efficient induction into Air Force while operating from Ozar, with stretched out resources. Successful induction of MiG-27 upgrade aircraft marks substantial increase in the war waging potential of IAF. Within two months of new induction he through his diligent efforts trained the Sqn pilots on upgrade aircraft and participated in the 'Air armament firing Competition' held in January 2007. In its first ever field trials, the Sqn achieved exceptional results in air to ground firing and was adjudged the best overall squadron in marksmanship while competing with other modern fleets of IAF. This remarkable achievement which boosts the offensive punch of IAF, would not have been possible without the outstanding leadership and professionalism of Wg Cdr Vidhate.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Sunil Kashinath Vidhate.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Shailendra Sharma 19189 F(P)Unit : No.51 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Shailendra Sharma (19189) F (P) is the Commanding Officer of a MiG-21 BISON Sqn since 25 Jul 05. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor, an Instrument Rating Examiner and has a total of 3325 hours of accident free flying. Earlier he was Flight Commander of a Mirage-2000 Squadron, and has led a large number of Air to Air refuelling fly-past demonstrations. Also as Joint Director Air Defence at Air Headquarters, he was in-charge of planning an international ferry of Mirage-2000 aircraft with AAR and he participated in an exercise with the South African Air Force. On assuming Command of the present Squadron, it had only one flying supervisor and one trainer captain. At the end of completion of the first year in Command of the Squadron, it had nine supervisors, eight trainer captains by day and five trainer captains by night. All this was achieved in spite of the BISON fleet having low aircraft serviceability. Under the officer's able command and proactive approach towards flight safety the Squadron has achieved an accident free record in the last two years. During his tenure, numerous service papers on innovations were forwarded by the squadron. In the last DASI inspection, he led from the front and the squadron did exceedingly well. This has been possible only due to the officer's tireless involvement, sincerity, selfless dedication to his duty and the willingness to put in long hours of work.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Shailendra Sharma.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Deep Raj Sirohi 19517 F(P)Unit : 125 Sqn  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Deep Raj Sirohi (19517) F (P) has been the CO of a Mi-25/35 Sqn since 08 May 06. This is a frontline Attack Helicopter Squadron located in a border base and tasked with a very important operational role in support of the Army.

As the CO of the Sqn, he brought about significant changes in the employment philosophy of Attack Helicopter operations in support of the Army. The endeavour was to exploit the operational flexibility and enhanced capabilities of the upgraded Mi35 towards maximization of its operational potential for off base night operations. His deep involvement and dogged pursuit of the revised employment philosophy ensured quick implementation of the concept and improved understanding of the employment of Attack Helicopter in support of Army, which has been well appreciated by HQ Western Command, Army.

Presently, the Sqn he commands is the only Attack Helicopter Sqn and therefore, it has to shoulder the training and operational requirements of both the Army and the Air Force. With clever management of resources and manpower, Wg Cdr Sirohi ensured that all the assigned tasks were met - this included inter service command level exercises, national tasks like Republic Day/ Independence Day celebrations, Presidential Fleet Review and other Air Force and Army commitments. Despite shortage of aircraft and numerous Sqn commitments, he ensured unstinted support for HCL course at Tactics and Air Combat Development Establishment (TACDE) thereby enabling completion of course on schedule. TACDE has deeply appreciated his commitment. Under his leadership, the Sqn has drawn accolades from diverse quarters for a professional approach to all operational commitments.

As CO, Wg Cdr Sirohi has led from the front and induced a vibrant team spirit amongst his subordinates. He has ensured that all Sqn personnel remain highly motivated and instituted a proactive, excellence seeking work ethos as the Sqn's identity. During the Directorate of Air Staff Inspection, the Sqn under his command has been adjudged 'Average Plus' in operations, maintenance and administration.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Deep Raj Sirohi.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Inderpal Singh Walia 19518 F(P)Unit : No.222 Squadron  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Inderpal Singh Walia (19518) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 11 Jun 88. He is the CO of a MiG-27 ML Sqn since 25 Apr 05.

He has more than justified the faith placed in him by his superiors by exhibiting exemplary competence, professionalism and dedication. The officer has worked tirelessly and volunteered to accept any additional jobs and is highly motivated for upholding the standards of service. He underwent the prestigious Fighter Strike Leader course. His subsequent absorption as a Directing Staff in Tactics and Air Combat Development Establishment (TACDE) is a testimony of his industriousness and ability. At TACDE as OIC Training, he was not only responsible for the conduct of various courses, but also to develop combat and strike concepts and tactics for the IAF with the ever changing threat scenario. Further, he was chosen to undergo the staff course at UK in Aug 02. With his determination and perseverance, he achieved a very high grading in the course thereby projecting the high standard of IAF's professionalism abroad.

He took over the command of the Sqn and achieved exceptional standards with his display of professionalism through personal example. Under his leadership, he guided the Sqn in achieving better operational and rating status. He ensured timely completion of jobs entrusted to him by thorough planning and excellent coordination with very high standards in quality output. Wg Cdr Walia, with conscientious, painstaking and thorough hard work, has contributed immensely to the IAF. During the DASI visit, his unit was graded Average Plus under his able guidance.

In Oct 06, he was entrusted with the planning and directing a bilateral defence exercise Sindex 06/2 at Air Force Station Kalaikunda, involving fighter Sqns from both the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) and the IAF. His knowledge, coupled with professionalism and active participation at each stage, resulted in the safe and fruitful conduct of the exercise from which both the Air Forces gained the maximum.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Inderpal Singh Walia.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Lalit Kumar Chawla 19871 F(P)Unit : No.223 Squadron  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 

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Amitabh Raja Shendye 19904 F(P)Unit : No.109 Helicopter Unit  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Amitabh Raja Shendye (19904) F (P) was commissioned as a Pilot in the Helicopter stream on 17 Dec 88. He has held the appointment of Flight Commander in two operational Helicopter Units and has also commanded a Helicopter Unit. He is a Qualified Flying Instructor (QFI) and a Unit Instrument Rating Instructor and Examiner (UIRIE) with over 5100 h of accident free flying to his credit. He is also a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College. For his operational achievements, he has received commendation by the CAS and by AOCin-C, Eastern Air Command.

In his long and distinguished flying career, Wg Cdr AR Shendye has flown almost all the helicopters in the inventory of the IAF and has participated in numerous operations and rescue missions. He was actively involved in Op Bajrang and Op Rhino against ULFA activists from 1990-92. From 1993-95, he took part in Op Meghdoot on the Siachen Glacier. During, Op Parakram, as Flt Cdr, he coordinated the deployment of his helicopter unit along the border in five different detachments. In the aftermath of the Tsunami, he was the Flt Cdr of the IAF contingent which was deployed in Sri Lanka for relief operations as part of Op Sea Wave. He carried out the maximum flying in the inhospitable LTTE infested areas, for which he received Certificate of Appreciation from the Government of Sri Lanka and letter of appreciation from AOC-in-C Southern Air Command.

During his tenure as the CO, his helicopter unit has been tasked with a number of rescue and relief missions. He has displayed sterling leadership qualities by ensuring a high operational and maintenance status and successfully executing each assigned task. He has also led from the front, by choosing to undertake the most difficult mission himself. He carried out casualty evacuation and flood relief operations near Kolhapur from 0513 Aug 05 displaying professional skills of a very high order amidst adverse weather conditions. During the operation, a total of 28475 kgs of relief supplies were airlifted and 42 people were rescued from the flooded area, flying a total of 64 sorties in 24 hours. He was responsible for effective planning in carrying out casualty evacuation and relief operations near Rajahmundhry from 21-26 Sep 05, near Mettur dam on 24 Oct 05, near PondicherryCuddalore from 25 Nov 05-01 Dec 05 and from river Amaravati on 11 Dec 05.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Amitabh Raja Shendye.

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

Vayu Sena Medal (Devotion to Duty)
Wg Cdr Sandeep Bansal 20438 F(P)Unit : Suryakiran  Award Date Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Wing Commander Sandeep Bansal (20438) F (P) was commissioned in the Flying Branch on 16 Dec 89. He is a fully operational Mirage2000 Pilot who flew missions during Kargil operations and commanded a Mirage-2000 detachment in western sector during Op Parakram. He is a cat A Qualified Flying Instructor who stood first during Instrument Rating and Instruction Examiner course. He is a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College, where he was adjudged as the Most Spirited Officer and was awarded Thimmayya Medal for standing first in the Overall Order of Merit. For his dedication to service, he was commended by the CAS in 2002.

Because of his professional competence of a very high order, Wg Cdr S Bansal was appointed as a CO and Team Leader of Suryakiran Formation Aerobatic Team on 06 Jun 05. Since then, he has performed creditably and led the Suryakiran team with distinction and ensured very high display standards winning laurels for IAF and making Indians proud of the IAF. Leading the nine aircraft team for more than 85 displays in two years, he has always displayed with maturity, confidence, precision and flying skills of the highest order.

With his foresight, immaculate planning and close supervision, the team was able to successfully accomplish highest ever display tasking during the IAF's Platinum Jubilee year of 2006-07. Additionally, he has also completed significant tasks of compiling Briefing Guide for the team, revision of the Suryakiran training syllabus and procured better training aids. All these measures have resulted in more effective and safer training capabilities.

For exceptional devotion to duty, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vayu Sena Medal' to Wing Commander Sandeep Bansal.

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

Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Ajit Singh 13409 LGSUnit : 25 Equipment Depot  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Ajit Singh (13409) Lgs was commissioned in the IAF on 14 Jul 73. He is an alumnus of DSSC and of the illustrious National Defence College.

The officer worked on manual system of provisioning, in vogue in IAF during Mid70's. Having learnt the intricacies involved, he was chosen among the first batch of Indian Air Force Officers to undergo Computer Training in 1977. During Mid-80's, he was involved in developing and commissioning of an "On-line Inventory Manage ment System" at an Equipment Depot. From there, he was deployed on yet another automation project - to develop an on-line software for the Personnel Branch at Air HQ. Thus, Air Cmde Ajit Singh has been a pioneer in the field of Computers.

Besides such diverse and un-connected assignments, the officer has handled all possible roles of logistics functions at various levels. As a Senior Logistics Officer in the field, he looked after the logistics support function of Gwalior, the premier base of Indian Air Force. As a Command Logistics Management Officer, he was in-charge of logistics activities of an entire region, under an Operational Command of Air Force. As Director Purchase, he handled the Central Procurement process of Air HQ, primarily involving foreign vendors.

The officer has successfully commanded an Air Stores Park for over two years engaged in extending the supply and distribution logistics to Air Force bases in Western Region. He is presently commanding the biggest Equipment Depot in Indian Air Force for nearly two years now. His sharp logistics acumen and innovative approach have helped in resolving many long standing vexed issues. Functioning of depot went fully on-line, with a major thrust on Integrated Materials Management Online System (IMMOLS) which is the computerized way of undertaking logistics activities. Being computer savvy, he instilled a sense of professionalism in pers onnel, leading by example and instrumental in ushering in a new work culture. Depot got its Audit clearance within a year of his taking over the reins and is now headed for paperless working environment. His unending zeal and enthusiasm brought about a quantum impro vement in the Station which earned awards for "Best Equipment Depot" and the "Best Environment" trophies for 2006. For his distinguished service of high order, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vishisht Seva Medal' to Air Commodore Ajit Singh.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Gp Capt Praduman Singh 14513 LGSUnit : 54 Air Stores Park  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Group Captain Praduman Singh (14513) Lgs was commissioned on 16 Jun 76 in the Logistics Branch of IAF. In 30 years of distinguished service he has held field and staff appointments that include Senior Logistics Officer at two Fighter Wings, computerized AOG Monitoring system at Air HQs, JD Eng Jaguar at Air HQ, CLMO SWAC, and PD Prov at Air HQs in the new AOL concept.

Group Captain Praduman Singh has been on the posted strength of an Air Storage Park (ASP) since 29 Aug 05. On taking over as JD Eng Jaguar (Q) in Aug 2000, the officer was assigned the task of improving the low aircraft serviceability by streamlining Jaguar aircraft spare provisioning and procurement system and make the AOG spares quickly available. He streamlined the system to procure AOG spares on fast track through Air Attaché London and critical spares from HAL out of their stock reserved for production of aircraft which reflected in considerable improvement in Jaguar fleet serviceability. He undertook the task of sale and transfer of spare valued at 16.82 Crores to HAL from an Equipment Depot in 2001. These spares which were held as non moving with IAF since inception of Jaguar aircraft in 1978-80 were gainfully utilized towards manufacture of 17 twin seater aircraft by HAL.

In the ACAS (Lgs) sub branch during 1999-2000 the issue that was resolved with his deep involvement includes vacation of Supreme Court ruling on Dunlop Calcutta Factory resulting in release and collection of much needed aircraft tyres on AOG for MiG21, AN-32 and other fleet of aircraft. In the present appointment of Commanding Officer, ASP which is a sensitive explosive depot in Delhi area, the officer commanded the Station exceptionally well by focusing and showing quality improvement in three areas viz. functional efficiency, security and morale of the Station. The salient highlight of his achievement are vacation of stay order from District Court Gurgaon and regaining control of Air Force land in use by private nursery owners, procurement of mechanical sweeping equipment thereby reducing manual efforts by 75% for cleaning of large explosive store houses, system of timely preventive maintenance of building by MES, sanction and start of construction of 10 WWR new explosives sheds and issue of NOC by MoD for construction of HUDA Golf Course on restricted belt of 900 meters around ammunition depot to resolve the long outstanding issue of unauthorized constructions around explosive perimeter fencing.

For distinguished service of high order, Hon'ble President is pleased to award Vishisht Seva Medal1 to Group Captain Praduman Singh.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Air Cmde Swapan Samaddar 14538 ACCTUnit : Air Force Central Accounts Office  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Air Commodore Swapan Samaddar (14538) Accts was commissioned in Jun 76 and is presently serving as Principal Director Accounts. The Officer has rich and varied experience in accounting matters gained over his 31 years of colorful service. The Air Officer has left his indelible mark of excellence in the various establishments he had served so far. For his exceptional devotion to duty and keen sense of involvement which resulted in substantial saving of Foreign Exchange he was commended by the CAS on 15 Aug 86.

His perseverance, hard work, intelligent and rational interpretation of rules and indefatigable drive has contributed in achieving several milestones for this directorate. Introduction of the concept of Mobile Accounts Squadron, Revision of syllabus for ab-initio training of Officers and Airmen of Accounts branch, timely posting of data by Accounts personnel in all Phase-1 IMMOLS sites, training of personnel for EQUOLS operation, fine tuning and implementation of e-audit and DACL software, renewed thrust for development of software for various Non Public Funds are some of the achievements by the Air Officer.

With his extraordinary inter personal skills the Air Officer has created an excellent relationship with audit authorities from grass root to apex level. This has resulted in clearing many complex policy matters pending with audit authorities for the last several years and hence brought in the desired efficiency in the system.

The Air Officer has been continuously pursuing excellence in all the activities undertaken by him. He has contributed tremendously in streamlining the procedure of the clearance of Traveling Allowance advances due to which a large number of old/ chronic advances as per the records of CDA (AF) could be cleared. Due to his broad vision, constructive approach and enthusiasm to bring in improvements, the Air Officer brought about the change wherein the authority to accord regularization sanction for Temporary Duty moves have been delegated to the local Unit Commanders. This has benefited the AF Officers at large by curtailing the delays in obtaining the subject sanctions from Command HQ besides huge monetary savings.

For his distinguished service of high order, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vishisht Seva Medal' to Air Commodore Swapan Samaddar.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 Number: 

Vishist Seva Medal
Gp Capt Zia Ahmad Rizvi 14968 LGSUnit : Maintenance Command  Award Date 26 Jan 08 Announced 26 Jan 08
Details :

Group Captain Zia Ahmad Rizvi (14968) Lgs was commissioned on 10 Jun 1977 in the Logistics (Lgs) Branch of IAF. In his 29 years of distinguished service, he has held several important appointments, which include Senior Logistics Officer of Flying Stations, Chief Logistics Officer/Dy C Lgs O at Equipment Depots (EDs) and staff appoint ments at Command and Air HQ. He has been awarded commendation by CAS in 1996 and by AOCin-Cs in years 1993 and 1998.

He is a hard core professional with very high level of integrity, dedication, devotion and assertive positive attitude. Through out his career, he effectively planned utilisation of available resources towards overall benefit of IAF and synergised the various TechnoLgs activities to ensure enhanced flying efforts both while serving in field units at Flying Stations and EDs as well as in staff assignments. He incorporated several effective result oriented procedures to enhance availability of spares ensuring higher fleet serviceability. As Dy C Lgs O EAC in largest ED, his systematic spares demand and supply analysis followed by interaction with HAL and major Base Repair Depot resulted in 30% reduction of Aircraft On Ground (AOG) in six months itself and also incidences of AOGs declined. During year 1998-99, provisioning activities of spares of few aircraft were decentralised necessitating automated processing of huge data. He willingly accepted this challenge and a comprehensive user friendly processing package in Oracle environment was developed in record time of 18 days which remained in use till change over to IMMOLS recently.

The Officer demonstrated outstanding managerial and professional skills even as young Flt Lt while serving at an ED, when due to change in stocking policy, Lakhs of Litres of aviation Oils were received in different packaging. He undertook in a time bound manner the uphill task of segregation, storage, sampling and introduc tion of testing B/F card system for costly/sensitive aircraft Oils which is still in vogue for life monitoring of stocks. While serving at flying bases, besides effective spares support to Sqn's higher fleet serviceability, he initiated various measures to ensure gainful utilisation of costly non-moving airborne spares by other bases.

At every unit of posting, he closely associated himself willingly with various welfare activities also. Standard of Preprimary School at Palam was enhanced in short span of time both in terms of facilities and teaching standards and was awarded "Best School" by HQ MC during 1995. His contribution, for setting up "Special Children School" at Bamrauli during 1991, "Adult Education" and "Family welfare" programmes at Bamrauli and at village near domestic airport New Delhi, adopted by AF Station Palam, needs special mention. For distinguished service of high order, Hon'ble President is pleased to award 'Vishisht Seva Medal' to Group Captain Zia Ahmad Rizvi.

Reference: Gazette of India Notification Dated : 26 Jan 2008 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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