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‘Falcon Slayers’: Abhinandan gets new patches to mark shooting down of Pak's F-16

New Delhi, News Nation Bureau | Updated : 16 May 2019, 12:32 AM
‘Falcon Slayers’: IAF pilot Abhinandan Varthaman gets new patches to mark shooting down of Pak's F-16
‘Falcon Slayers’: IAF pilot Abhinandan Varthaman gets new patches to mark shooting down of Pak's F-16

The unit of IAF Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman, the pilot who shot down Pakistan's F-16 fighter jet during a dogfight on February 27, is using new patches -- ‘Falcon Slayers’ -- showcasing his bravery. The unit also calls itself AMRAAM Dodgers as a MiG-21 jet evaded 4-5 AIM-120 AMRAAM missiles fired by a Pakistani F-16 jet on the same day.

Patches are cloth badges that depict the squadron’s role and often identify itself with an important engagement in which the squadron took part. It also reflects the type of aircraft the squadron flies and is worn on flying overalls.

Varthaman 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.  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 February 26.   

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. 

First Published: Wednesday, May 15, 2019 06:29 PM
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