New Delhi: The recent Lok Sabha elections saw Indian Air Force helicopters undertaking 1,600 sorties to take officials and equipment around the country while it handled about 3,500 chopper sorties in wake of Uttrakahnd flood last year rescuing more than 25,000 people.
These were some of the snippets from the history of the sixty years of Rotary Wing Operation in India and the IAF that Air Force Chief Arup Raha gave out as he praised the crucial helicopter wing of the force.
He was speaking at a symposium organised to commemorate the diamond jubilee of the Rotary Wing Operation. On the induction of the helicopters in the force, Raha mentioned that the first chopper was a Sikorsky S-55 that arrived at Mumbai by sea in 1954, the year the Air Chief was himself born.
The 1-4 (H) Squadron has the unique distinction of being the oldest helicopter unit of the country and is celebrating the diamond jubilee this year.
Incidentally, 114 (H) Squadron, also known as the Siachen Pioneers, is celebrating its golden jubilee this year.