Ten interesting Facts About Air Force

The Indian Air force aims to secure the Indian airspace as well as be equipped to carry out aerial warfare against enemy forces during times of war. The commander-in-chief of the Indian Air force is the President of the country and is a provisional honour. Since 1950, the Air force had been involved in four active wars against the enemies successfully.

Establishment of the Indian Air force- Indian Air force Day

 The Indian Air force was established by the British rule in India on 8th October 1932, as an auxiliary aerial force for the British Royal Army. The name Royal Air force was discontinued in 1950 after the country became a republic. 8th October, therefore, is celebrated as Indian Air force Day in the nation.

The Indian Air force flag

The Air Force ensign, different from the Air Force Colours, is blue in colour, containing the National Flag in the first quadrant and a roundel consisting of the colours of the National Flag i.e. saffron, white and green in the centre. This ensign was adopted in 1951.

Air Marshal Padmavathy Bandopadhyay- the first Woman Air Marshal

Air Marshal Padmavathy Bandopadhyay became the first Indian woman to be Air Marshal of Indian Air force. She is also the second woman IAF officer and the second military servicewoman to rise to the three-star rank. She later wrote a book about her service years in the IAF called “The lady in blue- The memoirs of India’s first lady Air Marshal.”


The Air Force secured a World Record in their Rahat Mission

The Air force created a world record by airlifting 20,000 civilians during the devastating flood in Uttarakhand by flying a total of 2,140 sorties. The fifteen-day operation was named Mission Rahat (relief) was indispensable in saving thousands of lives in 2013.

Indian Air force during the Second World War

Indian Air Force played a huge role in the success of the British Royal forces during the Second World War. Air Marshal Sir Thomas Walker Elmhirst was the first commander-in-chief of the former Royal Air Force of India, and he demanded the complete independence of the Air force from any military interventions in the country.

The Air force assisted the Allied Forces in the bloodied war that led to the defeat of the Axis power. IAF fighter pilot KK Majumdar, the first paramilitary force member to fly fighter jets belongs to the list of best fighter pilots of the Allied forces during World War 2.

The motto of the Indian Air force

“Nabha Spasham Deeptam” means “Touch the Sky with Glory” is taken from the eleventh chapter of the Bhagvat Geeta. Lord Krishna had appeared in front of the Mahabharata hero Arjuna to sermon him on the battlefield during the Kurukshetra war. The phrase defines the divine appearance in which Lord Krishna appears to have been towering over Arjuna, touching the sky in all his glory.

The Indian Air force is the seventh strongest aerial military force in the world

With a strength of 1,70,000 personnel and 1,500 aircraft, the IAF is the seventh strongest aero-fighting trained military force in the world. It is stronger than the air forces of countries like Russia, Germany, Japan and Australia. IAF can operate at about 224 squadrons and has its base outside the country.

Fakhar Air Base is located in Fakhar, Tajikistan. The IAF also has contributions abroad, as in undertaking the duty of maintaining peace in Somalia and engaged in conflict after the abrupt end of Belgian colonization in Congo.


The highest Air Base of the Indian Air Force

The Indian Air force has airbase, a small mountain surrounded village in the Nubra valley. This is an acronym for Transit Halt of Indian Soldiers En-route. The base has a helipad that is facilitated to operate for efficient transport of men and materials in the battlefield and the Actual Ground Position Line between India and Pakistan in Siachen glacier in the Eastern Karakoram Range.

The Indian Air force has a World record for the highest landing of a fighting aircraft

The Indian Air Force landed the C-130J Super Hercules Transport plane at Daulat Beg Oldi Airstrip in Ladakh. The skilled landing took place at an altitude of 5065 meters or 16614 feet above sea level. The courageous feat was accomplished on 20th August 2013 and is considered to be a world record-creating event.

Flying officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon was the only IAF officer to be awarded a Param Vir Chakra

Flying Officer Nirmal Jit Singh is the only recipient of The Param Vir Chakra, the highest military bravery award, in the Indian Air Force. He was awarded posthumously for his brilliant act of bravery in being the lone defender of the Srinagar Air Base from the Pakistan Air Force during the Indo-Pakistan war of 1971.

Even as he was shot down, his act of bravery and skill in controlling the fighter aircraft Folland Gnat was recognized even by the enemy pilot Salim Baig Mirza in an article later. 

As India is going to celebrate the 88th anniversary of the formal establishment of the Indian Air Force in October, the achievements of these warriors in blue are difficult to comprehend. The Air Force of India has not only displayed a courageous role in securing victory in battlefields, sacrificing their lives; they also engaged in various productive and peace-keeping events around the world. They secure the aerial field of the country and defend its citizens from any foreign invasion with sixty air bases, spread around the country. With all their achievements, the Air Force has lived up to its motto and touched the sky in all its years of service.