The 1971 Air War Project


Have you taken part in the 1971 War as an IAF Serviceman and would llike to share your experiences? Do you know anyone who has taken part and would like to write about their stories? Read more on how you can help.

The Bharat-Rakshak History Project aims to publish comprehensive operational histories of the Indian Air Force. Following the completion of the 1965 Air War History Project, and its publication in the form of a published book, The India-Pakistan Air War of 1965, the Bharat Rakshak IAF History team has started the 1971 Air War History Project. The history of the 1971 air operations promises to be a gigantic undertaking, and we need all the help we can get from from IAF veterans willing to share their experiences of this conflict.

We are looking for information on the following Squadrons

East : Nos 4, 16, 17, 30, 37, 221

West: Nos 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 9, 18, 21, 23, 26, 27, 31, 45, 47, 101, 108

How can I help?

If you served in the Indian Air Force during the 1971 war, we are interested in hearing about your service whether in flying, ground operations, intelligence, logistics, maintenance, medical support etc. No matter what your position in the IAF hierarchy, we are interested in hearing from you. We would like to emphasize: we are interested in the activities in the non-flying components of the IAF and from non-commissioned personnel. As examples we would be interested in hearing about the code-cracking efforts during the 1971 war, the innovations and modifications that ground-bound personnel came up with which made a difference to the fliers, work done by logistics personnel in maintaining the flying operations and so on. As an example of the kind of historical material you could supply, you might want to check out our pages on the 1965 Air War project. These could include photographs, squadron diaries, station diaries, personal journals, diaries, or just the willingness to answer questionnaires. No contribution is too large or too small. As examples of pieces we have been able to compile in the past, do check out the historical record 20 Squadron in the Ops or a pilots account of the Longewala battle. Please consider taking a moment to contact us using our Feedback Form.

Who is Bharat-Rakshak and why is it collecting this information?

For more information on Bharat Rakshak, its background and its membership, profile and interests please check here. You can also read about the IAF history team-members, PVS Jagan Mohan and Samir Chopra.

You can also read the reviews and reports on the 1965 Air War history project. Reviews by the current CAS, ACM Tyagi, AM Vinod Patney (Retd.), and renowned aviation historian Walter Boyne can be found in the link provided.

I'm not a veteran, but I'd like to help

If you know a veteran of the Indian Air Forces such as a family member, a neighbour or family friend, please consider encouraging them to visit our website and see some of our work, or you can solicit the relevant information and send it to us. We can compose a questionnaire that is relevant to the person you want to meet and e-mail it to you. It will serve as a guide for your conversation.

How do I contact you?

You can email us using our Feedback Form .