IAF pilot Abhinandan Varthaman returns to his squadron in Srinagar; medical board to review his fitness levels soon

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman has gone back to his squadron in Srinagar though he is on a four-week sick leave

Press Trust of India March 27, 2019 00:13:54 IST
IAF pilot Abhinandan Varthaman returns to his squadron in Srinagar; medical board to review his fitness levels soon
  • Abhinandan Varthaman has gone back to his squadron in Srinagar though he is on a four-week sick leave

  • Varthaman was captured by Pakistan on 27 February after his aircraft crashed in the neighbouring country's territory

New Delhi: Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, who was captured by Pakistan last month and returned to India two days later, has gone back to his squadron in Srinagar though he is on a four-week sick leave, official sources said Tuesday.

They said Varthaman preferred to stay with his squadron in Srinagar than going to his family home in Chennai while on leave.

IAF pilot Abhinandan Varthaman returns to his squadron in Srinagar medical board to review his fitness levels soon

File image of IAF pilot Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman. PTI

The IAF pilot went on leave around 12 days ago after security agencies completed a nearly two-week debriefing after his return from Pakistan. "Varthaman could have gone to his family home in Chennai to spend time with his parents. But he chose to go to Srinagar where his squadron is based," the sources said.

After his four-week sick leave period, a medical board will review his fitness to help the IAF top brass decide whether he can return to fighter cockpit as desired by him. He was captured by the Pakistani Army on 27 February after his MiG-21 Bison jet was shot down in a dogfight with Pakistani jets during an aerial combat. He downed an F-16 fighter of Pakistan before his plane was hit.

Varthaman was released on the night of 1 March by Pakistan.

After he was captured, Varthaman showed courage and grace in handling the most difficult circumstances for which he was praised by politicians, strategic affairs experts, ex-servicemen, celebrities and people in general.

Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated after Indian fighters bombed terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed's biggest training camp near Balakot, deep inside Pakistan on 26 February.

Pakistan retaliated by attempting to target Indian military installations the next day. However, the IAF thwarted their plans. The Indian strike on the JeM camp came 12 days after the terror outfit claimed responsibility for a suicide attack on a CRPF convoy in Kashmir, killing 40 soldiers.

Updated Date:

also read

Defence ministry clears proposal for GSAT-7C satellite for IAF: A look at other military satellites in India
India

Defence ministry clears proposal for GSAT-7C satellite for IAF: A look at other military satellites in India

The GSAT-7C, which will be launched in another two-three years, will enhance the Indian Air Force's global operations and network-centric warfare capabilities

​Russia begins supplying S-400 air defence system; what gives warfare its double edge
World

​Russia begins supplying S-400 air defence system; what gives warfare its double edge

Sources said that the system will be first deployed at a location close to the western border of the country from where it can tackle threats from both parts of the borders with Pakistan and China

In a boost to Indian capabilities Russia starts supplying S-400 Air Defense Systems to the country
India

In a boost to Indian capabilities Russia starts supplying S-400 Air Defense Systems to the country

The S-400 Air Defence System was contracted for by India in a deal worth around Rs 35,000 crore and five squadrons would be provided to India for tacking air threats from up to 400 km