Known for his distinguished service, strategic vision, and leadership skills, Marshal of the Indian Air Force Arjan Singh DFC was a force to reckon with. His exemplary role as Chief of IAF during the 1965 war can never be forgotten. He also became the first Air Force officer to wear five stars.
His military career started when he was commissioned as a Pilot Officer in December 1939 in the Royal Indian Air Force. In 1943, he was promoted to acting Squadron Leader and became the Commander of No. 1 Squadron.
His successful role in the crucial Arakan Campaign in 1944 earned him the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC). On 15 August 1947, he had the honor of leading the fly-past of over a hundred IAF aircraft over Delhi, over the Red Fort.
A man of many accolades, he got his next ‘feather in the cap’ when his outstanding leadership of commanding the IAF during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, was acknowledged by being awarded the Padma Vibhushan! Later in 1966, he went on to become the first IAF officer to be promoted to Air Chief Marshal.
After retiring from the IAF, he went on to serve as a diplomat, politician, and advisor to the Indian Government. He was Lieutenant Governor of Delhi from 1989 to 1990. Marshal of the IAF Arjan Singh passed away on 16 Sep 2017. His bravery & dedication will always remain an inspiration for the younger generation. To honor him India Post has issued a commemorative stamp of value 500 Paisa in 2019.
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