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Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman to be conferred with Vir Chakra on August 15

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Kool_SRG

The Vir Chakra is the third highest wartime military award in India.

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Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, who had shot down a Pakistani F-16 near the Line of Control (LoC) in February resulting in his capture and subsequent release by Islamabad, will be conferred with the Vir Chakra, one of India's top military honours, according to reports. 

On February 27, the Wing Commander brought down an F-16 jet of the Pakistan Air Force during a dogfight before his aircraft received hits and was brought down. He was apprehended by officials of the Pakistani Army on the same day and taken into custody. The fighter pilot had sustained a rib fracture, a back contusion and some bruises after he was allegedly attacked by locals at PoK.

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman returned to India on March 1 after he was captured and was in Pakistani custody for two days. After returning and completing the medical procedure, although he was sent on sick leave for four weeks, he joined his squadron in Srinagar.

The mission by India was carried out in retaliation of a terror strike in Jammu & Kashmir's Pulwama on February 14 in which 40 Central Reserve Police Force personnel and the attacker were killed. 

Pakistani security forces had captured Abhinandan, but released him to India around 60 hours later at the Wagah border.

After his return to India on March 1, Varthaman, the son of a former high-ranking IAF official, had undergone tests in New Delhi and after clearing medical examination, he was subsequently posted out of Jammu and Kashmir as part of service policy as well as security reasons.

The Vir Chakra is the third highest wartime military award in India, after the Param Vir Chakra and Maha Vir Chakra. 

The Chakra is awarded for acts of gallantry in the presence of the enemy, whether on land or at sea or in the air.

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Kool_SRG

The annoucement was reported by ANI on Wednesday morning.

 

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Kool_SRG

Woman fighter controller who helped intercept Pak’s air attack gets IAF award

Sq Ldr Minty Aggarwal was part of a team of seven fighter controllers on duty on February 27 morning and controlled the Indian Air Force’s interception package launched to stop Pakistan’s fighter jets.

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Squadron Leader Minty Aggarwal, the woman fighter controller who played a key role in intercepting the Pakistan air force’s attempt to launch retaliatory air attacks after the Indian Air Force’s Balakot airstrikes has been named for the Yuddh Seva Medal.

The Yuddh Seva Medal is awarded to recognise distinguished service of a high order during war, conflict or hostilities.

Sq Ldr Minty Aggarwal was part of a team of seven fighter controllers on duty on February 27 morning and controlled the Indian Air Force’s interception package launched to stop Pakistan’s fighter jets.

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman was one of the pilots who took off to engage the intruding Pakistani F-16 fighter jets and scripted military aviation history by downing a Pakistani F-16 fighter jet during the aerial dogfight that followed.

Sources said Sq Ldr Minty Aggarwal was also the one who told Wing Commander Abinandan Varthaman turn back at the right moment. But Wing Commander Abhinandan could not hear the instruction because the communication system had already been jammed by Pakistan Air force by then. His MiG21 Bison wasn’t equipped with the anti-jamming technology that the IAF had been asking for years. It could have prevented him from being shot down and taken captive by Pakistan.

But before the MiG21 Bison was hit by a missile, the IAF officer shot down the F-16 jet that he had engaged.

Varthaman was caught by the Pakistani forces and held in detention for 60 hours before Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan announced in Islamabad that he would be freed.

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman has been named for the Vir Chakra, India’s third-highest wartime gallantry award, after the Param Vir Chakra and the Maha Vir Chakra.

The five Mirage-2000 fighter aces who had dropped bombs with precision on the terror facility of the Jaish-e-Mohammed are also being awarded the Vayu Sena Medal for gallantry.

The IAF had destroyed the JeM camp in Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s province after entering Pakistani airspace for the first time in 48 years following a suicide bombing claimed by the terror group that killed 40 troopers of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) in Jammu and Kashmir’s Pulwama on February 14.

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Kool_SRG

5 IAF pilots, who bombed Jaish camp in Balakot, awarded Vayu Sena Medal

The five Indian Air Force pilots who bombed the Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist camp in Pakistan’s Balakot have been awarded the Vayu Sena medal.

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HIGHLIGHTS

  • IAF pilots who destroyed terror camps in Pakistan honoured
  • All five Indian Air Force officers are Mirage-2000 pilots
  • Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman is likely to be awarded be conferred the Vir Chakra
 

The five Indian Air Force pilots, who bombed a Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist training camp in Balakot on February 26 following the Pulwama terror attack, have been conferred the Vayu Sena Medal.

The five Indian Air Force pilots, Wing Commander Amit Ranjan, Squadron Leaders Rahul Basoya, Pankaj Bhujade, BKN Reddy and Shashank Singh are being awarded the Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry) for bombing Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist camp in Pakistan’s Balakot.

All five Indian Air Force officers are Mirage-2000 pilots.

Not only that, Indian Air Force’s woman Squadron Leader Minty Agarwal awarded Yudh Sewa Medal for her role as a fighter controller during the February 27 aerial conflict with Pakistan.

What happened in Balakot?

The Balakot airstrike was seen as a response to the February 14 Pulwama suicide attack, in which 40 jawans of the Central Reserve Police Force were killed.

Jaish-e-Mohammed had claimed responsibility for the Pulwama suicide bombing.

Two weeks later, Indian Air Force's Mirage-2000 fighter jets took off from airbases in India before dawn on February 26. The IAF jets crossed the Line of Control in Jammu and Kashmir and targeted the Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camp in Balakot with precision, guided missiles.

The Balakot airstrike capped days of rising tensions between India and Pakistan. The airstrike pushed Delhi and Islamabad to the brink of an armed conflict, with the Pakistan Air Force attempted retaliatory strikes a day after on February 27.

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman likely to be conferred Vir Chakra

Sources had earlier said Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, who shot down an F-16 in a dogfight with PAF jets a day after the February 26 Balakot airstrike, was likely to be conferred the Vir Chakra on Independence Day.

 

The 36-year-old IAF pilot had suffered injuries while ejecting from his MiG-21 Bison during the aerial combat between Indian and Pakistani air forces on February 27.

Varthaman, who became the face of a tense military confrontation between India and Pakistan, is set to fly MiG-21 within a few weeks as a medical board cleared his return to fighter cockpit.

Varthaman was captured by the Pakistani Army on February 27 after his MiG-21 Bison jet was shot down in a dogfight with Pakistani jets during aerial combat. Before his jet was hit, he downed an F-16 fighter of Pakistan. Varthaman was released on the night of March 1 by Pakistan.

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