The 1st of March 2019 shall go down as another glorious day in Indian history, when braveheart Abhinandan Varthaman, who is a Wing commander in the Indian Air Force, defied death and Pakistani tyranny, despite being captured on Pakistani soil. Not only did he live to tell his tale, but also he has come back to India safe and sound.
Now, as per what has been revealed through his meetings with the top brass of the air force and the Indian government, it turns out that Wing Commander Abhinandan is more than delighted to be back. He wants to get back into action and serve the IAF in the cockpit once again.
For those unaware, Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman is an Air Force officer who had been captured on Pakistani soil while trying to escape after his MIG 21 crashed. Hailing from an illustrious family, with most of his family members themselves having served in the armed forces, he was maneuvering a MIG 21 Bison aircraft when a Pakistani F 16 fighter jet, armed with AAMRAAM air to air missile, invaded the Indian airspace.
Pursuing the aircraft, Abhinandan engaged the same in a dogfight and managed to shoot it down. However, his aircraft developed a technical snag, due to which he was forced to eject. He landed on Pakistani territory, where he was assaulted by locals, following which the Pakistani army took him into custody. Intense diplomatic pressure, followed by India’s refusal to concede ground forced Pakistan to release him within 60 hours of his capture. As of now, he is being treated at the Air Force Research and Referral Hospital in New Delhi. He has been visited by the Chief of Air Staff BS Dhanoa, as well as the Minister of Defense, Smt. Nirmala Sitharaman and Minister of State for Defense, Shri Subhash Bhamre etc.
During the entire ordeal, due to ejection from the aircraft, Wing Commander Abhinandan had sustained injuries in the spine and the lower ribs. He admitted to the authorities that he received no physical torture on the part of the Pakistani authorities, but he was mentally harassed by them. He was even forced to shoot a propaganda video, due to which his release was delayed on 1 March 2019. Though he was operated upon arrival by the authorities for the inclusion of any bug on his person, which could’ve been implanted by the Pakistani spies, there were none.
However, despite facing such immense odds, Abhinandan has refused to give up. His cheeky personality, coupled by his steely resolve, gives us a clear indication that if fit, he is ready to jump into the cockpit again for our motherland. On being asked whether Abhinandan will be allowed to fly with the IAF again, Chief of Air Staff, Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa had this to say:-
Air Chief Marshal BS Dhanoa:Whether he (Wing Commander #Abhinandan) flies or not depends on his medical fitness. That's why post ejection, he has undergone medical check. Whatever treatment required, will be given. Once we get his medical fitness, he will get into fighter cockpit pic.twitter.com/2ykp5aon3h
— ANI (@ANI) March 4, 2019
We all laud the IAF braveheart for his immense commitment to the service of the nation, and hope for his speedy recovery. We also hope that his bravery does not go unrecognized and inspire many for generations to come.