Tuesday, June 30, 2009


The India Post has being issueing postage stamps on our Mighty, Powerful and Gallant BHARATIYA VAYU SENA (INDIAN AIR FORCE). Here is a peek into these stamps and planes on them. The "BHARATIYA VAYU SENA" ( INDIAN AIR FORCE) was officially established on October 8, 1932 as an auxiliary air force of the Indian empire and the prefix Royal was added in 1945, the Royal Indian Air Force served the Union of India, with the prefix being dropped when India became a republic in 1950.The Bharatiya Vayu Sena has strength of approximately 170,000 personnel, 730 combat and 1,700 non-combat aircraft in active service, the Indian Air Force is the world's fourth largest air force in the world.
These are first set of stamps issued on The Bharatiya Vayu Sena, these are issued on silver jubilee of The Bharatiya Vayu Sena in the year 1958. The first plane of The Bharatiya Vayu Sena Westland Wapiti and Hawker Hunter (which was latest aquisition in 1958) are featured on these stamps. Note that only word in hindi on these stamps are न पै.
This stamp was issued to commemorate the armed forces on the first republic day after the 1965 War. The stamp, released on 26 Jan 1966 features a formation of three Gnats renamed AJEET. And also features cruiser INS Mysore and Infantry soldier.

The Folland Gnat (renamed AJEET) is the only aircraft to have been 'rewarded' with a stamp of its own in recognition of its performance in the 1965 War.This plane has also earned the name of The Saber Slayer, because many USA made Pakistani Sabers were shot with it in 1971 Bangla war.Date of release was 16-10-67.
Issued on 8th October 1982, 50 Years from the day the IAF Act was passed, this stamp showing the Wapiti with the latest and secret acquisition of that time, the MiG-25 which is renamed as 'Garuda'.

These Se-tenant Stamps issued on 8th October 1992 on the occation of Diamond Jubilee of The BHARTIYA VAYU SENA, features (from top left corner Clock wise) MIG-29 Fighter, MIG-27 Fighter, IL-76 transport plane, and of course The Westland Wapiti. The Wapiti is the most commmemorated aircraft in Indian stamps.
This Stamp issued on April 01 1993 the Diamond Jubilee of the No.1 Squadron "The Tigers" with the Squadron crest and the Westland Wapiti making appearance again.
This stamp issued on 16th December 1997 to marks the 50 Years of the Indian Armed Forces, features the silhouette of a Sukhoi-30.
This stamp issued on 26th December 1999 on the occasion of 40th anniversary of the Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) shows the LCA Tejas, the Prithvi Missile and the Indra II Radar, all of which are operated by the Indian Air Force, The Arjun Tank can also be seen.

This commemoration stamp is issued on 19th February 1999 on the Golden Jubilee of the National Defence Academy at Khadakvasla features the Silhoutte of a Jaguar IM Fighter Bomber.
This stamp is one of the five stamps( Se-tenant strip of five) issued on 27th January 2000 on the 50th anniversary of Indian Republic, featuring Param Veer Chakra Awardees. This stamp shows Flying Officer Nirmal Jeet Singh Shekhon PVC , Who fought with six F-86 Sabres at Srinagar when it was attacked. He took off and battled with the six aircraft singlehandedly before sheer numbers overwhelmed him. The Ajeet (Knat) can also be seen.

These stamps issued on 5th February 2003, this was also The Centinial year of man's First flight From Top Left corner clockwise:
  1. HAL Ht-2 or Hindustan Trainer-2 built by HAL, this was the first ever indigenously built aircraft inducted into the IAF.
  2. The HF-24 Marut is the first indigenously built fighter.
  3. The LCA Tejas is in testing stage by HAL is made of composite materials.Advance Avoinics, Fly by wire technology is also integraed in this.
  4. The ALH Dhruv is multi roll Helicopter indegenously developed by HAL.This Helicopter is also being exported.
This stamp was released on 21st December 2005 on the golden jubilee of No.16 Squadron "The Cobras".From Bottom to top The Supermarine Spitfire Mk XIV , The HF-24 Marut, and the Jaguar IS.

These stamps are issued on October 8th 2007 on Platinum Jubilee of Bharatiya Vayu Sena features ( from top left Corner Clockwise)
  1. ALH Dhruv,indigenously developed by HAL, seen here wearing peacock decoration of The Sarang, Helicopter acrobatic team of IAF.
  2. The Beriev A-50 is the AWACs variant of the Illyushin-76 transport aircraft. India's first A-50 aircraft equipped with the Phalcon radar arrived on 25th May 2009 and was officially inducted on the 28th May 2009( AWACs appeared on the stamp before it joined IAF). With the induction of the AWACS, India has joined a club of only six other nations - the US, Russia, Britain, Japan, Australia and Turkey - that operate such a sophisticated system.
  3. The Westland Wapiti making appearance again.
  4. IL-76 Transporter here seen as refueler, Refueling two SU-30 Fighters.
Though India has not developed many planes but the Bharatiya Vayu Sena's Pilot's shown to the world that they one of the best, not only in skills but also in gallantry. ( I want to thank Bharat-Rakshak from where I have used lots of references in writing this Weblog)

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Ajay said...

Very nice compilation

Vijay Kapre said...

I think this is a very nice Blog. But, please check the background colour, because, it is difficult to read the text (in brow) on an emerald green background.
- Vijay Kapre -

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