2019 is being observed as the 20th anniversary of the Kargil War victory and several celebrations are being planned which will take place across the country.
As part of the 20th anniversary of the Kargil war, Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal, BS Dhanoa undertook another sortie today to pay tribute to Squadron Leader Ajay Ahuja who was martyred during Kargil war in 1999. This is the second time in quick succession that the chief has flown a MiG-21. In a formation flypast from Air Force Station Bhatinda, Punjab, he flew the `Missing Man formation’. Part of the formation flying was Air Officer in Charge of Western Air Command, Air Marshal R Nambiar too flew along with the Indian Air Force (IAF) chief.
2019 is being observed as the 20th anniversary of the Kargil War victory and several celebrations are being planned which will take place across the country. Ahuja was a flight commander with the Golden Arrows based out of Srinagar, during the Kargil War and the MiG-21 squadron was commanded by the present air chief who a Wing Commander then.
According to IAF, the role of the current air chief during the Kargil operations will be remembered for a long time. “He was the brain behind devising many unique strike strategies. It was perhaps for the first time that IAF saw many new modes of night operations while undertaking the non-stop bombing mission,” said a senior officer.
It was on May 27, 1999, during a reconnaissance mission in Batalik sector, that Ahuja’s plane was hit by a surface to air stringer missile which had forced him to eject. And, he was captured by Pakistan Army and was tortured. On May 28, 1999, his mutilated body was handed over to the Indian side.
Missing Man Formation:
As per the IAF traditions, this formation flight is under taken to pay tributes to air warriors who had lost their lives in war or during peace operations.