| Wing Commander Sachin Gupta (25854) Flying (Pilot) is on the posted strength of an Advanced Light Helicopter unit since 28 Jan 13. On 18 Jun 13, at 0530h, he was tasked to proceed to Phata helipad in Kedarnath valley for evacuation of stranded pilgrims. Assessing the weather, he took off immediately and reached Phata. Without switching off. he picked up relief packets and got airborne for Kedarnath valley. He was the first one to commence relief operation in the Kedarnath valley. Within the valley. due to the marginal weather, tall trees and narrow width of the valley, the maneuvering space was extremely limited posing a danger to the helicopter and its occupants. Despite these restrictions. the officer displaying courage and utilizing his exceptional piloting skill carried out safe drop of ration and supplies at various places. Spotting a clear patch near Rambada, with just enough space for rotor clearance and with only adequate space for one skid on ground. he boldly carried out a low hover to pick up old and injured pilgrims. He ensured quick turnaround and carried out continuous shuttles to rescue 45 civilians and drop 900 Kgs of ration on the first day. Subsequently. he rescued pilgrims in treacherous areas like Gaurikund, Kedarnath and Garud Chatti. He was also instrumental in spotting the crash site of the ill fated Mi-17 V5 helicopter in the Kedarnath valley. Having located the crash site and selecting the most appropriate site for winching down Garud commandos. he took adequate precautions and carried out the winching down of the Commandos. Considering the hostile nature of the operating area, and difficulty of carrying out winch operations at the elevation of 2.9 Km, even a small error could have had disastrous consequences. During Op Rahat, he flew 200 sorties 70 hrs and rescued 237 casualties. All of these missions required exceptional courage and professionalism for safe execution. For his exceptional courage, focused and dedicated service, Hon'ble President is pleased to award Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry) to Wing Commander Sachin Gupta.