On 88th Indian Air Force Day, three Air Force officers of India received Yudh Seva medal for taking part in the Balakot air strike last year. Yudh Seva is an Indian medal, given to those officers whose performance is distinguishable in the war and conflict.
Every year on October 8, India celebrates Air Force Day to commemorate the Air Force’s foundation day. So this year, when India held the celebration, it rewarded three officers with gallantry medals who took part in Balakot attacks last year in Pakistan. Squadron Commander Minty Agarwal, Group Captain Hansel Sequera, and Group Captain Hemant Kumar Vadsra are officers who received this Award.
According to India, Pakistan was involved in Pulwama attack on 14 February in which 40 CRFP got killed. Indian air force then carried out an air-strike in Balakot on 26 February to avenge Pulwama bombing. They claimed to destroy Jaish e Muhammad training camps killing 300+ people but DGISPR recorded no casualty, claiming that just a bunch of trees and a crow got hit. So the strike seemed to have a major fail.
The very next day, Pakistan bombarded in Indian territory, countering this, India sent its jets after Pakistani pilots. Chasing the jets, Indian pilot Abhinandan entered in Pakistan’s territory and his jet got shot by Pakistan. After that, he was captured. His arrest became a major setback for India.
Squadron Commander Minty Agarwal was holding the fighter control and giving important instructions when MiG 21 got hit, and Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman ejected on Pakistan land. The local media caught fire, and Indian news channels were full of the only headline, capturing their experienced pilot.
The government had only demand for his immediate and safe return; many were calling him a hero. After two days, he was returned to India safely as a peace gesture from Pakistan. People welcomed him back as an honourable hero of the nation, and India paid tribute.