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Prez, Defence Min pay respects to Marshal of IAF Arjan Singh at his residence

Last Modified Sunday, 17 September 2017 (21:47 IST)
New Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind and Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on behalf of Prime Minister and Ministry of Defence today paid their respects to Late Marshal of the IAF at his residence here. Minister of State for Urban Development Hardeep Singh Puri , Chiefs of the three Services -- Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa, Naval Chief Admiral Sunil Lanba, Army Chief General -- and other dignitaries paid their respects to Arjan Singh at his residence here. The mortal remains of the Marshal of the Indian Air Force Arjan Singh will lie in state today at his residence 7A, Kautilya Marg, New Delhi to enable people to pay their respects.

The mortal remains will be conveyed to the funeral site from his residence tomorrow starting at 0815 hrs in a gun carriage procession, Ministry of Defence said in a statement. A state funeral will be accorded to Marshal of the IAF Arjan Singh in the national capital tomorrow. Ninety-eight-year-old Arjan Singh, Marshal of Indian Air Force and India’s oldest and the only officer of the IAF to have been promoted to five-star rank, breathed his last at the Army hospital here yesterday. The state funeral will be held from 0930 hrs onwards tomorrow at Brar Square, Naraina.

Gun salute will be given and a fly past will be organised before the final rites. 'As a mark of respect to the departed dignitary, a state funeral will be accorded and national flag will fly half-mast on the day of the funeral in Delhi on all buildings where it is flown regularly,' Ministry of Home Affairs in a statement said. Famous for his stellar role in the 1965 Indo-Pak war when he led the IAF from front, Arjan Singh had a life-long zest for flying and had flown 60 different kinds of aircraft.

During the war when Pakistan had launched 'Operation Grand Slam' targeted at the crucial border town of Akhnoor in Jammu and Kashmir, it was Arjan Singh who led the air force with his professional skill and courage. He took charge of Indian Air Force’s third chief of staff in August 1964. In 1965, he was honoured with Padma Vibhushan for his role in Indo-Pak war. When he retired in 1970, he became one of the longest serving chiefs of armed forces in the country. During his tenure as Air Force chief, IAF acquired modern fighters, reconnaissance aircraft, transport planes and tactical helicopters. (UNI)
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