Squadron Leader Minty Agarwal, who played a key role as flight controller during the aerial combat between India and Pakistan on February 27, has been awarded Yudh Seva medal.
The IAF received a total of 13 awards including five Yudh Seva Medals and seven Vayu Sena Medal.
At least five Mirage fighter pilots, who were part of the operation to strike a Jaish-e-Mohmamed terrorist training camp deep inside Pakistan's Balakot on February 27, were among the awardees.
The Army also got eight Shaurya Chakra awards and 98 Sena medals. The Navy got one Shaurya Chakra award.
"We are very happy that Wing Comm Varthaman has been conferred with Vir Chakra," said an IAF official.
Varthaman, 36, was captured by the Pakistani Army on February 27 after his MiG-21 Bison jet was shot down in a dogfight with Pakistani jets during aerial combat.
Before his jet was hit, he downed an F-16 fighter of Pakistan. Varthaman was released on the night of March 1 by Pakistan.
Varthaman had suffered injuries while ejecting from his MiG-21 Bison during the aerial combat.
A high-level medical board of the Indian Air Force has already cleared Varthaman to return to the fighter cockpit.
Days after he returned from Pakistan, Varthaman conveyed to the IAF brass his wish to resume flying at the earliest.
IAF fighter jets bombed a Jaish-e-Mohammed terrorist training camp in Balakot on February 26, nearly two weeks after the Pulwama terror attack.
Pakistan retaliated on February 27 by attempting to target Indian military installations.
Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.
As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.
Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.