1999 Kargil War

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Sqn Ldr Ajay Ahuja
17864 F (P)

17 Squadron
KIA 27 May 1999
Sqn Ldr Ajay Ahuja's MiG-21M (C-1539) was shot down by a shoulder fired missile while he was looking for another downed IAF pilot in the Kargil area. He was killed subsequently in a gunfight on the ground.
Flt Lt Subramaniam Muhilan
22739 F(P)

152 HU
KIA 28 May 1999
Flt Lt Muhilan was the pilot of a Mi-17 that was shot down by Shoulder fired missile at Tololing range in the Kargil area during a raid on Infilitrators positions. The crew of four in the helicopter were lost.
Sqn Ldr Rajiv Pundir
17413 F(P)

152 HU
KIA 28 May 1999
Sqn Ldr Pundir was killed in action while flying as a co-pilot of a Mi-17that was shot down at Tololing. They were flying as No.4 in a formation of four choppers attacking enemy positions.
Flt Sgt P V N R Prasad
695490

152 HU
KIA 28 May 1999
Flt Sgt Prasad was the Flight Gunner on board the Mi-17 helicopter flown by Flt Lt Muhilan. He was killed when the helicopter was downed by shoulder fired SAMs.
Sgt Raj Kishore Sahu
729917

152 HU
KIA 28 May 1999
Sgt Sahu was the Flight Engineer on board the Mi-17 helicopter flown by Flt Lt Muhilan which was shot down over Tololing by SAM missiles.
         

 

Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja, Flying (Pilot),
No.17 Squadron, MiG-21M ,
KIA 27 May 1999

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Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja of the Indian Air Force was killed in action on 27 May 99 while on a combat mission launched during the operations being conducted over the Indian side of the line of control in Kashmir when his aircraft was hit by a shoulder-fired ‘Stinger’ Surface to Air Missile (SAM).

The officer made the supreme sacrifice for his country while remaining over enemy positions to help rescue attempts to locate a downed pilot, knowing fully well the existence of enemy SAMs in the area. This extremely courageous act involving immense risk to his life exemplifies the daring qualities of Indian fighter pilots engaged in the present operations. Tragically, he paid the price for his bravery when his MiG-21 fighter was hit by a SAM. Though the officer ejected safely, but, as was confirmed by the post-mortem report, he was murdered in cold blood on the ground. We salute this brave officer for his gallantry and draw heart from his dedication and bravery.

Sqn Ldr Ajay Ahuja hailed from Kota in Rajasthan and was born on 22 May 63. He graduated from the National Defence Academy and was commissioned in the IAF as a fighter pilot on 14 Jun 85. His 14-year career span as a fighter pilot included tours as an operational pilot on the MiG-23 fighter-bomber and MiG-21 variants, besides instructional flying experience of over 1000 hours spent teaching ab-initio pilots. An A2 instructor, he was extremely popular among his pupils because of his patient and cheerful nature.

A thorough professional, the officer was the Flight Commander of a specialist photo-reconnaissance squadron. His wife Mrs Alka Ahuja and a son Ankush survive him.


Squadron Leader Rajiv Pundir, Flying (Pilot),
No. 152 Helicopter Unit, Mi-17 ,
KIA 28 May 1999

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Squadron Leader Rajiv Pundir of the IAF was killed in action on 28 May 99 while flying as a co-pilot of a Mi-17 helicopter being flown in the attack role during a mission against infiltrator held ground positions within the Indian side of the line of control.

A graduate of the National Defence Academy and a post graduate in Military Studies from the prestigious Defence services Staff College, Sqn Ldr Pundhir was the Flight commander of a Mi-17 Helicopter Squadron. The officer displayed courage of an extremely high order and carried out successful combat missions against heavily defended ground targets. He made the supreme sacrifice during one such mission by carrying out attacks in a very hostile environment wherein the opposition on ground was known to possess a surfeit of surface to air missiles, in spite of which the officer carried out repeated attacks in the face of lethal enemy opposition.

His courageous action in the face of enemy fire contributed significantly to the support being given by the IAF to the Indian Army in its efforts to dislodge the intruders from our territory.

Sqn Ldr Rajiv Pundir was commissioned in the IAF on 28 Apr 83 and was an experienced Helicopter pilot experienced on, among other aircraft, the Heavy Lift Mi-26 Helicopter besides having 2500 hours on the Mi-8 and Chetak/Cheetah helicopters.

An alumni of St Josephs Academy, Dehradun Rajiv Pundir was a thorough professional with a zest for doing things well. A very enthusiastic and energetic young man he remained at the centre stage of all activity. A keen sportsman, he had a passion for music and was an accomplished singer.

Sqn Ldr Rajiv Pundir is survived by his wife Mrs. Sharmila Pundhir, a seven-year-old daughter Bhavya, and a four and a half-year-old son Karan.


Flight Lieutanant Subramanian Mulihan, Flying (Pilot),
No. 152 Helicopter Unit, Mi-17 ,
KIA 28 May 1999

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was killed in action on 28 May 99 when his helicopter was downed by a surface to air missile. He was captaining the aircraft, which was a Mi-17 helicopter, during an attack mission against ground positions strongly held by infiltrators.

Flight Lieutenant S Muhilan skillfully maneuvered his aircraft and repeatedly carried out attacks in the face of fierce enemy opposition in the form of ground fire and Stinger Surface to Air missiles. He paid the supreme sacrifice during this air to ground rocket attack against a heavily missile defended area. His courageous action unmindful of danger to his personal safety typifies the courage of the IAF’s helicopter pilots who have time and again demonstrated such qualities during various operations including those conducted during natural calamities in aid to civil power.

An experienced helicopter pilot he has flown both the Mi-8 and Mi-17 helicopters. A science graduate who joined the air force through the Combined Defence Services exam was commissioned at the air force academy on 08 Dec 93. This young officer from Belgaum in Karnataka was a thorough professional with over a thousand hours on helicopters. He made the supreme sacrifice for his country in keeping with the highest traditions of the service.

Flt Lt Muhilan was an accomplished pilot from the Helicopter fleet of the air force and his flying skills enabled accurate delivery of lethal weapons against well entrenched positions. Intimately familiar with high altitude operations, his experience was an asset to the IAF in the current operations.

He is survived by his wife Mrs Bina Muhilan, he has also left behind a two year old son, Dhruv.


Sergeant P V N R Prasad, Flight Gunner,
No. 152 Helicopter Unit, Mi-17 ,
KIA 28 May 1999

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Sergeant PVNR Prasad a Flight Gunner on board a Mi-17 helicopter was killed in action on 28 May 99 while participating in a combat attack mission against infiltrator held ground positions on the Indian side of the line of control in Kashmir.

Sgt PVNR Prasad displayed exemplary courage and bravery of the highest order. While in the face of intense enemy opposition, he carried out his functions in an exemplary fashion significantly contributing to the effectiveness of the crew as a whole. In doing so, he made the supreme sacrifice for his country. Sgt Prasad performed his mission undeterred by the dangers to his personal safety and we salute this brave airman for his valiant act.

Having joined the air force on 18 Jan 85 Sgt Prasad opted to become a Flight Gunner so that he could participate in active combat missions whenever required to do so. Hailing from Adilabad in Andhra Pradesh he served in many Air Force stations and specialised in Mi-8 helicopters.

He leaves behind Mrs P Anuradha his wife and a four-year-old daughter Hyndavi.


Sergeant Raj Kishore Sahu, Flight Engineer,
No. 152 Helicopter Unit, Mi-17 ,
KIA 28 May 1999

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Sergeant Raj Kishore Sahu, a Flight Engineer on board a Mi-17 helicopter was killed in action on 28 May 99, when his helicopter was brought down over Indian territory by a surface to air missile. Raj Kishore Sahu was engaged in attacking ground targets in the Indian side of the line of control in Kashmir while attempting to dislodge intruders from the Indian side. He displayed the highest standard of professionalism in steadfastly carrying out his duties as ordered, in the face of intense enemy opposition during the attack mission. His cool and efficient functioning made possible the effective employment of the helicopter during the earlier attack. In doing so he made the supreme sacrifice for his country and we are proud of this brave and valiant soldier whose efforts would contribute in our evicting the infiltrators from Indian soil.

Sgt Raj Kishore Sahu hailed from Cuttack in Orissa and joined the IAF on 03 Aug 89. He served in many Air Force stations across the length and breadth of India and has been posted in both Mi-8 and Mi-17 squadrons besides working on the technical maintenace team for MiG-27 aircraft at a forward fighter base in the eastern region.

His father, Mr Krishna Chandra Sahu, survives him.