No.18 Squadron Flying Bullets

Motto : Theevra Aur Nirbhay (Swift and Fearless)
Date Raised : 1965-04-15 Location : Sulur (Coimbatore)
No.18 Squadron AF was formed at Ambala on 15 Apr 1965 with five Gnat aircraft and eleven pilots. The squadron was christened “FLYING BULLETS” as it was equipped with the Gnat fighter aircraft which was small, lean and deadly.The Sqn crest depicts a bullet with wings, ahead of which is a shockwave indicating supersonic flight. The Sqn motto is “Teevra aur Nirbhay” which translates to “Swift and Fearless”. The Sqn recieved one VM during the operations of 1965, three Mention-in-Dispatches in 1971 along with the only PVC of the Indian Air Force awarded to Fg Offr Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon. In Jan 72 it moved back to Ambala and there after moved to Srinagar once again in Feb 75 where it converted to Ajeets. The squadron remained at Srinagar till Jan 85 and then moved to Sulur and then to Bagdogra in Feb 88 after which it moved to Hindan in May 89 to be converted to the formidable MiG 27 ML, while operating across the length and breadth of the country. The Sqn was number-plated in Apr 16. Carrying forward the legacy of the “Flying Bullets”, the Sqn is again getting resurrected on 01 Apr 20 at Sulur, with eight officers and the indigenous Tejas Mk1 FOC aircraft, which is a single-engine, light weight, highly agile, all weather multi-role fighter aircraft. Though the primary role of the aircraft is Air Defence, it is also designed to undertake Ground attack and Maritime Operations. Being the first Squadron of the Tejas Mk1 FOC, the Flying Bullets have been tasked with the responsibility of operationalising the Sqn once again to carry forward the rich legacy of their predecessors.

Aircraft Types operated over the years:

Commanding Officers

View in Grid

DatesRank & NameNumberRemarksLocationPhoto
15 Apr 65 to 29 Dec 66Wing Commander Aubrey Leslie Michael3416 GD(P)COAmbala
02 Jan 67 to 06 Dec 70Wing Commander Denzil Edward Satur4339 GD(P)COAmbala
07 Dec 70 to 21 Jun 71Wing Commander Dwijendra Lal Dhar4678 GD(P)COAmbala
16 Aug 71 to 22 Feb 72Wing Commander Parmarthi Raina4650 GD(P)COAmbala/ Srinagar
03 Mar 72 to 02 Jul 74Wing Commander Mohan Vasudeo Kashikar4801 GD(P)COAmbala
03 Jul 74 to 22 Jun 75Wing Commander Trevor Joseph Keelor4818 GD(P)COAmbala/ Srinagar
23 Jun 75 to 06 Jun 77Wing Commander Herbert Moel David5179 GD(P)COSrinagar
07 Jun 77 to 02 Feb 81Wing Commander Kamal Khanna5795 GD(P)COSrinagar
02 Feb 81 to 20 Jun 83Wing Commander Eapen Mathulla8365 GD(P)COSrinagar
21 Jun 83 to 06 May 85Wing Commander Sunil Kumar Malik9002 GD(P)COSrinagar
06 May 85 to 05 Jun 87Wing Commander Chidambaram Sarangapani Chandrasekaran8768 GD(P)COSrinagar/ Sulur
06 Jun 87 to 09 Apr 89Wing Commander Ranjit Singh Tathgur11877 GD(P)COSulur/ Bagdogra
10 Apr 89 to 12 May 91Wing Commander Birendra Singh Yadav12373 GD(P)COHindon
13 May 91 to 23 May 93Wing Commander Sanjay Kumar Jayaswal13134 F(P)COHindon
24 May 93 to 19 Feb 95Wing Commander Anil Gupta13242 F(P)COHindon
25 Feb 95 to 23 Feb 97Wing Commander Pradeep Singh14086 F(P)COHindon/ Kalaikunda
24 Feb 97 to 22 Nov 98Wing Commander Anil Chaudhary14564 F(P)COKalaikunda
23 Nov 98 to 22 Oct 00Wing Commander Ashminder Singh Bahal16208 F(P)COKalaikunda
23 Oct 00 to 15 Oct 02Wing Commander Thazhathupulikunnel Devasia Joseph16964 F(P)COKalaikunda
16 Oct 02 to 18 Jul 04Wing Commander Sujeet Pushpakar Dharkar17841 F(P)COKalaikunda
19 Jul 04 to 14 May 06Wing Commander Manoj Yashwant Marathe18824 F(P)COKalaikunda
15 May 06 to 31 Mar 08Wing Commander Sameer Mehra19524 F(P)COKalaikunda
01 Apr 08 to 28 Mar 10Wing Commander Gourab Sinha20467 F(P)COKalaikunda
29 Mar 10 to 15 Apr 12Group Captain Vasudevan Rajalekshmi Sanil21523 F(P)COKalaikunda
16 Apr 12 to 31 Mar 14Group Captain Ashish Rana22949 F(P)COKalaikunda

Note: All the data available here is publicly available in the Gazette of India, published by the Indian Government, or from public domain sources, press releases about Awards and Right-To-Information (RTI) Requests. Additionally data shared by veterans is added to the page with permission. No data with respect to serving officers below the rank of AVM is displayed. Information in Gazette of India and Award citations and photographs as released by the Indian Air Force are the only details displayed.