Indian Air Force Day : Celebrating the Pride of India

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Indian-Air-Force-Day
Image – Jaskirat Singh Bawa via Flickr

India is blessed with a dedicated and powerful Armed Force, willing to go any length to protect the country. It is due to their devotion and love for the country that India is free from any foreign invaders today. It is their undivided attention and relentless dedication for their country that enabled India to withstand any attack from foreign powers. Today, the Indian Army is one of the most powerful Armed Forces in the world. The Indian Armed forces consist of four main branches, the Indian Air Force, the Indian Army, the Indian Navy, and the Indian Coast Guard. The Ministry of Defence manages the Indian Armed Forces. The Indian Air Force Day celebrates the bravery of the Indian Air Force.

The Indian Army is the largest part of the Indian Armed Forces and is responsible for protecting the country and safeguarding its borders. Indian Navy is responsible for securing India’s maritime borders and guarding the same in case of war or aggression from foreign powers. The Indian Coast Guard works in close association with the Indian Navy, and it is responsible for enforcing Indian Maritime rules and in defending India’s Maritime Interests. The Indian Air force is responsible for protecting the airspace and averting any threats targeted against the country’s well-being.

On October 8th, 2020, the Indian Air Force marked its 88th anniversary. The air wing of India’s armed forces, the Indian Air Force, (IAF), protects the country by securing its airspace and engaging in aerial warfare in case of armed conflicts. The Indian Air Force day marks the anniversary of the establishment of the Indian Air force. Also called the Bharatiya Vayu Sena, the IAF is now composed of devoted and skilled personnel who would stop at nothing to ensure the country’s safety.

The Indian Air force is a significant part of the Indian Military. Its primary duty is to protect and safeguard the country through aerial warfare in case of threats or attacks by any foreign power. Besides securing the airspace, the Indian Air force also provides support in case of any natural calamities. For instance, during natural disasters like the floods, the Indian Air Force plays a major role in providing medical aid, distributing food supplies, and rescuing people. Hence, the Indian Air Force is one of the most significant and prestigious branches of the Indian Armed forces.  Strategic planning, precision, and innovation are the characteristics that set the Indian Air Forces distinct from others.

At the time of its establishment, India was under the rule of the United Kingdom and hence was named as the Royal Indian Air Force. It was only in the 1950s that it was renamed as Indian Air Force. Since India’s Independence, the Indian Air force has played a significant role in safeguarding and protecting the country against threats. Since Independence, the IAF has fought in several battles and today holds the position as the fourth largest Air Force in the world. After 1950, the Indian Air force has been an important part of the wars that ensued between India and the neighbouring countries. Apart from this, the IAF has also been involved in the major operations such as Operation Vijay, which was associated with the annexation of Goa.

The Indian Air force day is celebrated on October 8th, every year, to create awareness about the IAF among India’s citizens and to uphold the sacrifices made by the IAF officers to protect the country against any foreign threats. Apart from protecting the nation against threats, the IAF also plays a significant role in providing support during natural disasters by being an important part of the rescue mission.

The Indian Air force day is celebrated on October 8th, because it was on this day in 1932, that it was formed as a part of the Royal Air Force. The Indian Air force was initially a part of the Royal Air force of the United Kingdom. It was only after World War II that it was renamed as the Royal Indian Air Force. Though established in 1932, the first operational squadron was organized only a year later in 1933. The motto of the Indian Air Force is ‘Touching The Sky With Glory’. The Honorable President of India acts as the Commander in Chief of the Indian Air force.

The main event which marks the IAF day celebrations is the parade, which takes place at the Hindon Air Force base located in Ghaziabad. Earlier (till 2005-06), the Indian Air Force day’s celebrations used to be held at Palam. However, due to some issues regarding the air traffic, it shifted to the Hindon Air force base. During this day, the CAF, Chief of Air Staff, awards medals to selected officers. The event is quite prestigious and is viewed around the country with great respect.

This year, the event also displayed the various fixed-wing aircraft and the helicopters to the public. A full rehearsal of the events that were to be conducted was also organized earlier. Apart from being televised, the event is also attended by many citizens from around the country and the retired officers and their families. This year the event was made even more special as the celebrations also featured the Rafale fighter aircraft. The IAF establishments around the country also celebrate the day through some events. Usually, the events which are organized in the IAF establishments are attended by veterans. However, this year, there were restrictions due to the pandemic.

The Indian air force plays a significant and irreplaceable role in the Indian Armed forces. It has a significant role in maintaining the peace and security of the nation. Today the Indian Air Force consists of incredibly skilled and brave warriors who stand courageously to safeguard the nation against any element that might threaten its peace. Counted as one among the powerful air forces in the world,  the IAF is also one of the most technologically advanced in the world.  The Indian Air Force has also played a significant role in some UN missions.  From being an airforce with only seven sepoys, the IAF now has about 1,500 aircraft and 1,70,000 personnel and working day and night to secure the country from threats.

Today, the IAF has all the modern weaponry and highly efficient jets, which provide a strong shield to the country.  The brave warriors of the IAF always work in unity as a team in planning out strategies and implementing them. The IAF is continuously in a mode of transformation as new technologies and new upgrades replace the old ones. This preparedness is crucial for the country as it enables the country to be alert for unexpected emergencies.

The IAF has completed many missions successfully, and other than being a significant part of the defence, the IAF has also helped in certain other calamities. The Indian Air force is a source of pride, not only for the Indian Armed forces but also for the entire country. Their dedication and hard work have many times proved beneficial for the country. Be it a threat from a foreign power or a natural calamity, the Indian Air force is always quick to act with determination and precise planning. For every citizen of India, the Indian Air Force is a matter of pride and prestige and is treated with utmost respect and reverence.

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