Wg Cdr Ravindra Nath Bali, Vr.C, Indian Airforce

Wg Cdr Ravindra Nath Bali, Vr.C

During the India-Pakistan war in December 1971, Sqn Ldr Bali was a senior pilot in a fighter bomber squadron. He was detailed to destroy a massive enemy thrust spearheaded by a tank regiment at Longewala.

He led three strike missions on 5th December and one on 6th December. During these attacks, he destroyed three tanks and caused extensive damage to a number of other tanks and vehicles despite heavy ground fire and on some occasions intense enemy air opposition.

On 7th December, he again led a strike mission to the same area and destroyed two tanks. However, during the pull-out after the second attack, his aircraft was hit by ground fire and half of the control surfaces were knocked out. Despite the damage to his aircraft, he skilfully brought it back to base. His missions contributed significantly in neutralising the enemy thrust and in the overall success of the operations.

Throughout, Sqn Ldr Bali displayed gallantry, leadership and professional skill of a high order.