Gp Capt Kapil Bhargava needs no introduction. His articles have been gracing the pages of publications like Air Forces Monthly, Air Enthusiast, Flypast , Air International and Indian Aviation for many years.
Commissioned in Oct 1950 in the 53rd Pilots Course, he flew Spitfires and Vampires before attending the Empire Test Pilots School in UK to graduate as one of India’s pioneer test pilots.
In his test flying career with the IAF, besides production test flying, He flew the first flights of the HAL Pushpak, the HS-748 ‘Avro’ and the Messerschmitt HA 300 Fighter designed by Egypt. The first flight of the HS-748 earned him one of the first Vayusena Medals awarded to the IAF – in 1962.
He was also the first commandant of ASTE (then A&ATU) and served as the Station Commander of Jodhpur.
After his career in the Air Force, he was with the Flight Safety Directorate of Hindustan Aeronautics Limited in Bangalore before retirement.
Gp Capt Kapil Bhargava passed away on 17th December 2014 at Bangalore. Read the tributes to him here.
How I became a World War II Casuality [Ext Link]
Coming close to the War Effort as a school boy in UP
The Naked Apes & General Salute
Induction into Uniformed life as a Cadet
The 53 PIC
Flying the Spitfire
Training on the Spitfire and joining No.7 Squadron
The IAF’s First Formation Aerobatic Team
The birth of formation aerobatics in the Indian Air Force
No.7 Squadron – 1950s
A few photographs from the tenure in No.7 Squadron.
Remembering a Gunnery Course in UK
The Pilot Attack Instructors Course in UK
Hierarchy in Defence
A humorous look at Army – Airforce co-operation in the 60s
What a test pilot does
Test pilot training at ETPS and general musings on terminology
The HF-24 Glider
The World’s last fullscale plywood glider of a fighter aircraft
AVRO 748 in India
Test Flight of the HS748 and subseqent VIP encounters
Messerschmitt’s HA-300 and its Indian connection
Test flying Egypt’s first fighter
Eye Witness to the Six Day War
His Test-Pilot work in Egypt is interrupted by the Six Day War!
Test Pilot losses in Marut Testing
The Marut claimed four test pilots in the years 1970-71.
Saving some Chetaks of the IAF
A spate of IAF Chetak accidents baffles everyone – and HAL is tasked to rectify them.
Suranjan Das – The Man and the professional.
A tribute to Gp Capt Suranjan Das, the test pilot who gave his life to the Marut Program
Operations at Diu – The One Day War
Air Operations from Diu
Anglo – Indians in the Indian Air Force
The contribution of this small community to the Indian Air Force
History of the TACDE Unit
Air Force Test Pilots School
History and operations of the AFTPS
The Indian Air Force as an Aircraft Manufacturer
It was the IAF that manufactured the first Avros in India and not HAL!
India’s Reclaimed Bombers: The B-24 Liberator
India’s first heavy bomber – rescued from the scrap heap.
HT-2 – India’s first powered aircraft
India’s first indigenously designed and built aircraft.
An introduction to Aviation Artists in India – DA La Fontaine – KS Raman – Locky Loughran
A look into a little known branch of painting that is related to Aviation History.
Quarter Century of the Jaguar
The story of the Jaguar induction and its service with in the IAF
Aviation in India
The origins of aviation in India.