Indian Air Force - Diamond Jubilee
The Indian Air Force came into being with the promulgation of the IAF Act 1932 on 8th October 1932. Its first formal flight was formed at Karachi on 1st April 1933 with four Westland Wapiti aircraft, six officers and 19 Hawai Sepoys. By 1938 the single flight had, swelled into three flights and formed No. 1 Sqn.
The year 1939 saw the beginning of World War 1. Five coastal Defence Flights were raised at Madras, Bombay, Calcutta, Karachi and Cochin to guard 3000 miles of India's coastline.
Soon after the independence the IAF had to take active part in Kashmir operation in which it rendered valuable support to the Army by flying in troops and attacking concentration of the raiders.
With the acquisition of Vampires in 1948, the IAF became first Asian Air Force to fly jets. The Indian Air Force became completely to its own in 1954 when Air Marshal Subroto Mukhejee became the first Indian Commander- in-Chief and the Chief of the Air Staff.
During the Chinese aggression in 1962, Indian Air Force rendered a valuable transport and logistic support to our forward posts of both the Army and the civil administration. The 1965 conflict with Pakistan added another chapter to the glorious record of IAF. The crucial battle for air supremacy was won and the Indian Air Force enjoyed the complete control of the sky. Again during Indo-Pak conflict 1971 IAF gained air supremacy within 43 hours in the Eastern Sector. In the Western Sector, it was a story of destroying PAF aircraft, damaging ports, oil installations, radar installations, tanks, opponents lines of supply and providing an effective umbrella to the Army advance.
Maintaining high operational standard and excellent record of efficiency, the IAF has continued to rise in stature. As time marches on, so also does the IAF to the call of the Nation during war and peace. The heroes who made history still fly the expanding horizon and create and recreate the saga that is the Indian Air Force.
Date of Issue: 8.10.92