Air Marshal , Vice Chief of Air Staff & Retirement

During the 1971 war, he was the Air Officer Commanding (AOC) Maritime Air Operations in Bombay in the rank of Air Vice Marshal. Maritime air operations were jointly conducted with FOC-in-C Western Naval Command; notable among the operations carried out during that War was the joint planning and execution of the attack with the Indian Navy on Karachi Harbour and the petrol storage tanks near Karachi. He then moved to Training Command as its AOC-in-C. He was the AOC-in-C of Maintenance Command based at Nagpur before moving to Air HQ as the Vice Chief of Air Staff. During his tenure as the VCAS he was awarded the PVSM for meritorious service of the highest order.

Air Marshal AR Pandit PVSM, AVSM, DFC retired from the IAF on 31 Mar. 1977 after 36 years of distinguished service during which he flew 23 types of aircraft and recorded 3800 hours of flying. Since retirement Air Marshal and Mrs. Pandit have settled down in Pune.

As an Air Vice Marshal – He was the AOC in C of Training Command at that time. -
TRAINING COMMAND STATION COMMANDERS’ CONF 1972    Front Row, L-R: G/C WM Goodman, CO EFS Bidar; Unidentified (CO PTS?); Air Cdre JHFJ Manekshaw, CMO, TC; Unidentified; AVM AR Pandit, AOC-in-C TC; Air Cdre JF Lazaro, SASO TC; Air Cdre Mazumdar, AOC Jalahalli; G/C MS Ray ; G/C  Kelkar, SOA TC. Back Row, L-R:  W/C SKC Gupta,  Unidentified, Unidentified, G/C PS Gupta , G/C Krishnamurthy CO AF Selection Centre; G/C EPR Nair ; Unidentified; G/C Kalra, CO FTW Hakimpet; W/C NK Nair, C Eng O TC. Ids Courtesy:  G/C (R) PS Gupta Pic Courtesy: Late AVM NK Nair’s collection.
Air Vice Mshl AR Pandit introducing a visting RAF Air Vice Marshal to senior officers of HQ Training Command on 11 Jan 1973
- Air Mshl AR Pandit (standing third from right) at a conference of senior   commanders with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi
Air Mshl AR Pandit (third from left) at a conference of senior commanders with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi -
- Air Marshal Pandit’s Medal Group. Note: Air Mshl Pandit’s PVSM has not been mounted . Also missing are the Poorvi Star 1971, Sangram Medal 1971 and the Videsh Seva Medal.
The miniature medals of Air Mshl AR Pandit. The medals from Left to Right are AVSM, General Service Medal 1947 with clasp ‘Naga Hills’, Samar Seva Star, Paschimi Star, Raksha Medal, Sangram Medal, Sainya Seva Medal with clasp ‘Jammu and Kashmir’, Videsh Seva Medal, Indian Independence Medal, 25th Independence Anniv Medal, 20 Years Long Service, 9 Years Long Service, Distinguished Flying Cross, 1939-45 Star, Burma Star, 1939-45 War Medal, India Service Medal -
- Air Mshl AR Pandit receiving the PVSM from BD Jatti in 1977.
Air Mshl AR Pandit as the Vice Chief of Air Staff in 1977 -
- Air Mshl and Mrs Pandit in 2001 browsing through old photographs and log books

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