IAF Pilots: The crown jewels of the country

Discussion in 'Defence & Strategic Issues' started by Gladiator, Jul 24, 2009.

  1. Gladiator

    Gladiator Regular Member

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    Hi,

    I surfed through the forum and found that there is no dedicated thread for our beloved air warriors who have guarded our skies for several decades. These are the men who have over the course of history turned ordinary machines into extraordinary fighter juggernauts that bulldozed over enemy aircrafts, airbases and other strategic installations while shrewdly guarding our own skies. Indian pilots have played crucial roles in every single major war where aircrafts have been used, starting from the World-War-1 to the most recent Kargil war!

    So, friends I dedicate this thread to the Indian Pilots, the crown jewels of the country! Please post all the news and opinions relating to Indian pilots in this thread. Discuss anything under the sun to do with the Indian pilots, their glorious exploits of the past, specific war heroes, their training, performance in joint international exercises etc.
     
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  3. Gladiator

    Gladiator Regular Member

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    The lone Indian flying Ace​


    [​IMG]

    Indra Lal Roy


    Name: Indra Lal "Laddie" Roy

    Country: India

    Rank: 2nd Lieutenant

    Service: Royal Flying Corps
    Royal Air Force

    Units: 40, 56

    Victories: 10

    Awards: Distinguished Flying Cross

    Born: 02 December 1898

    Place of Birth: Calcutta

    Killed In Action: 22 July 1918

    Place of Death: Near Carvin

    Indra Lal ("Laddie") Roy, DFC (2 December 1898 – 22 July 1918) was a Indian flying ace. He served in the First World War with the Royal Flying Corps and its successor, the Royal Air Force.
    The son of Bengali parents - P. L. and Lolita Roy - he was born in Calcutta. When World War I broke out, Roy was attending St Paul's School, Hammersmith in London, England.
    Five months after turning 18, in April 1917, he enlisted in the Royal Flying Corps and was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant on 5 July 1917. After training and gunnery practise at Vendome and Turnberry, he joined No. 56 Squadron on 30 October 1917. Roy was part of "A" Flight, commanded by flying ace Captain Richard Maybery.
    Two months later, Roy was injured after he crash-landed his S.E.5a fighter on 6 December 1917. While recovering, Roy made numerous sketches of aircraft — many still exist. Though concerns were still raised that he was medically unfit, Roy was successful in returning to duty after he completed his period of recuperation. He transferred to Captain George McElroy's No. 40 Squadron in June 1918.
    On his return to active service, Roy achieved 10 victories (two shared) in thirteen days (4 and 1 shared destroyed, 4 and 1 shared 'out of control'). His first victory was a Hannover over Drocourt on 6 July 1918. This was followed by three victories in the space of 4 hours on 8 July 1918 (two Hannover Cs and a Fokker D.VII); two on 13 July 1918 (a Hannover C and Pfalz D.III); two on 15 July 1918 (two Fokker D.VIIs); and one on 18 July 1918 (a DFW C.V). Roy's final victory came the following day when he shot down a Hannover C over Cagnicourt. He was thus first and only Indian flying air ace to this day.
    He was killed over Carvin on 22 July 1918 in a dog fight with Fokker D.VIIs of Jasta 29. Roy was posthumously awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) in September 1918 for his actions during the period of 6-19 July 1918. He is buried at Estevelles Communal Cemetery.
    His nephew Subroto Mukerjee too was a fighter pilot who later became the first Indian Chief of Air staff of the Indian Air Force.
     
  4. Gladiator

    Gladiator Regular Member

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    Appreciation galore!​



    [1] "The outcome of the exercise boils down to [the fact that] they ran tactics that were more advanced than we expected. India had developed its own air tactics somewhat in a vacuum. They had done some training with the French that we knew about, but we did not expect them to be a very well-trained air force. That was silly.”

    [2] “They could come up with a game plan, but if it wasn't working they would call an audible and change [tactics in flight]. They made good decisions about when to bring their strikers in. The MiG-21s would be embedded with a Flogger for integral protection. There was a data link between the Flankers that was used to pass information. [Using all their assets,] they built a very good [radar] picture of what we were doing and were able to make good decisions about when to roll [their aircraft] in and out."

    [3] "When we saw that they were a more professional air force, we realized that within the constraints of the exercise we were going to have a very difficult time. In general, it looked like they ran a broad spectrum of tactics and they were adaptive. They would analyze what we were doing and then try something else. They weren't afraid to bring the strikers in high or low. They would move them around so that we could never anticipate from day to day what we were going to see."

    [4] “They were very smart about it. Their goal was to get to a target area, engage the target and then withdraw without prolonging the fight. If there were a couple of Eagles still alive away from the target area, they would keep them pinned in, get done with the target and then egress with all their forces.”

    -- Maj. Mark A. Snowden, USAF 3rd Wing's chief of air-to-air tactics and a participant in Cope India 2004.

    AWST: 3rd Wing Explains 'Cope India' Exercise - Vayu Sena

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    “What happened to us was it looks like our air training might not be as good because the adversaries are better than we thought and in the case of the Indian Air Force both their training and some of their equipment was better than we anticipated.”

    -- Col. Mike Snodgrass, commander of the 3rd Wing at Elmendorf Air Force Base, AK.

    USAF: Indian Exercises Showed Need For Changes In Training - Vayu Sena

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    “What we faced were superior numbers, and an IAF pilot who was very proficient in his aircraft and smart on tactics. That combination was tough for us to overcome.”

    -- Col. Greg Neubeck, deputy commander of operations for the wing’s 3rd Operations Group and exercise director for Cope India

    USAF: Indian Exercises Showed Need For Changes In Training - Vayu Sena
     
  5. Gladiator

    Gladiator Regular Member

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    Continued........

    "IAF pilots performed exceedingly well during the exercises which for the first time were being held in an AWACS environment."

    -- Lieutenant General DA Deptula, Vice Commander of the Pacific Fleet USAF

    Cope India 2005 - IAF comes out with flying colours | India Defence

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    “IAF pilots were outstanding. We watched them very closely and have learnt a lot from them".

    -- Captain Eathen White, USAF F-16 commander

    Cope India 2005 - IAF comes out with flying colours | India Defence

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    “We try to replicate how these aircraft perform in the air, and I think we’re good at doing that in our Air Force, but what we can’t replicate is what’s going on in their minds. They’ve challenged our traditional way of thinking on how an adversary, from whichever country, would fight.”

    -- Col. Hugh Hanlon, 13th Fighter Squadron commander, USAF

    Cope India ?06: Fast-paced and full of firsts | Stars and Stripes

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    “One USAF controller working aboard an AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System) plane told reporters at Kalaikundi Air Base that he was impressed by the speed in which Indian pilots responded to target assignments given them by AWACS. The AWACS, while operated by Americans, was acting as a neutral party, feeding target assignments to both Indian and American pilots during the exercise. In most cases, the Indians responded to target assignments faster than the American pilots did - a surprising fact, given that this was the first time Indian pilots had used the American AWACS capability.”

    USAF vs. Indian Air Force -- Cope India 2005 - Winds of Change.NET

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    “They (IAF Pilots) were extremely professional - they never flew out of the airspace which we were very concerned about. They had zero training rule violations. And that in itself was incredible. We were very impressed and thanked them so much because they were very very professional.”

    -- Colonel Terrence Fornof, F-15 pilot and the Director of the Requirements and Testing office at the United States Air Force Warfare Center, Nellis AFB, Nevada.
     

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