No.122 (Ad-Hoc) Squadron at Jaisalmer

 

The Pilots of Longewala

Having read the earlier two articles by Air Marshal Minhi Bawa and Wg Cdr Kukke Suresh, The visitor must be wondering who are the players and the pilots who flew operations in this battle. For the first time, we present a set of rare photographs of the flyboys who made history at Longewala . 

The Air Force Pilots:

Wg Cdr M S Bawa ,Stn Cdr
Sqn Ldr N L Gupta
Sqn Ldr S D L Tully
Sqn Ldr R N Bali
Flt Lt K S Suresh
Flt Lt D K Dass
Flt Lt R C Gosain
Flt Lt Pawan Kumar
Flt Lt Deepak Yadav
Flt Lt Jagbir Singh
Flt Lt P K Mukherjee

The Army Pilots:

Maj Atma Singh
Capt P S Sangha

When the Pakistani Tank Regiment attacked Longewala there were only Four single seater Hunter 56 and Two two seater Hunter 66s on the base.

Later during the war , the pilots were augmented by the main force from OCU led by the CO Wg Cdr D M Conquest.

Sqn Ldr S D L Tully (Later Air Marshal) was a Flight Commander at Jaisalmer. He flew a number of missions during the Longewala Battle. Jagbir Singh on the right.

Pilots and crew at Jaisalmer.  1. SDL Tully (M-in-D) 2. Kukke Suresh (VrC) 3. Jagbir Singh (VrC) 4. W/C D M Conquest (AVSM, VrC) CO OCU.

Can you identify the others? 


Flight crew at Jaisalmer during a discussion. The members in the photograph are 1. Gullu Kapur  2. Kukke Suresh 3. Jagbir Singh 4.R N Bali 5. W/C Minhi Bawa (Stn Cdr) 6.SK Gupta and 7. W/C MN Singh (OC Flying)

The pilots of No.12 Air Observation Post , Captain P S Sangha  and Major Atma Singh along with an IAF pilot from Longewala with their Krishak aircraft.

Major Atma Singh (Left)of No.12 Air Observation Post did stellar work in spotting the T-59s along with Captain P S Sangha (Right) . Both officers were awarded the Vir Chakra.