Central Air Command, Indian Air Force
CAC Crest.jpg
Emblem of the Central Air Command
Founded19 March 1962
CountryIndia
BranchIndian Air Force
TypeOperational Air Command
RoleAir Defence, OCA, Offensive Ground Support, Airlift.
HeadquartersPrayagraj
Motto(s)Sanskrit: निग्राह्या रसवा शस्त्रावा Nigrahya Rasava shastrava
Engagements1962 Sino-Indian War, East Pakistan Operations 1971, Operation Meghdoot, Orissa Super-Cyclone Relief, 1999
Commanders
Air Officer Commanding-in-ChiefAir Marshal Amar Preet Singh, AVSM[1]
Senior Air Staff OfficerAir Marshal Ravi Gopal Krishana Kapoor, AVSM, VM[2]

The Central Air Command is one of the five operational commands of the Indian Air Force. It is currently headquartered in Prayagraj in Uttar Pradesh. It was formed on 19 March 1962, at Rani Kuthee, Calcutta.

History

Due to the possibility of war with China, No. 1 Operational Group was formed on 27 May 1958 at Ranikuthee in Calcutta, to look after all the units. In 1959, it was upgraded to Eastern Air Force (EAF). In 1962, after the Sino-Indian War, EAF was moved to Shillong and Central Air Command (CAC) was formed on 19 March 1962 with its headquarters at Rani Kuthee, Calcutta (now Kolkata). Calcutta was considered an inappropriate location for the Central Air Command Headquarters and it was relocated to Prayagraj in February 1966.[3]

During the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965, CAC English Electric Canberras carried out 163 bombing and 33 close air support sorties against Pakistani forces, and raided Pakistan Air Force airbases at Mauripur, Multan, Sargodha, Peshawar, and Chaklala. Squadron Leader Charanjit Singh and Flt Lt Mangat Singh made a 'brilliant raid' on the night of 13–14 September 1965, by carrying out a major air base attacks at Peshawar. Three Mahavir Chakras were awarded to the members of Canberra squadrons. In a major attack, seven Canberras of No. 35 Squadron attacked the oil storage tanks at Karachi, destroying about 60% of Pakistan's oil reserves.[4]

On 3 November 1988, during the 1988 Maldives coup d'état, Indian troops were airlifted to Maldives in two CAC Ilyushin Il-76s and landed at Hulule airport on a dark unlit runway. By 2.30am on 4 November the Indian forces completed their mission and safely brought back the President of Maldives.[4]

In operation "Safed Sagar" during the Kargil war in 1999, CAC played a prominent role by successfully carrying out attacks on enemy bases.[4]

The IAF's first exercise with a foreign air force (Garud) took place with the French Air Force in Gwalior in 2003 and CAC participated in an eight-day exercise. A number of joint exercises have been conducted with the United States Air Force, Royal Air Force, the Singapore Air Force and South African Air Force at Gwalior and Agra. [4]

Organization

Squadrons include:

Squadron Base Equipment Notes
No. 106 Squadron IAF Agra Air Force Station Avro 748M No. 4 Wing IAF
No. 8 Squadron IAF Bareilly Air Force Station Su-30MKI No. 15 Wing IAF
No. 24 Squadron IAF Bareilly Air Force Station Su-30MKI No. 15 Wing IAF
No. 111 Helicopter Unit, IAF Bareilly Air Force Station HAL Dhruv No. 15 Wing IAF
No. 16 Squadron IAF Gorakhpur Air Force Station SEPECAT Jaguar IS No. 17 Wing IAF
No. 27 Squadron IAF Gorakhpur Air Force Station SEPECAT Jaguar IS No. 17 Wing IAF
No. 105 Helicopter Unit, IAF Gorakhpur Air Force Station Mi-17V-5 No. 17 Wing IAF
No. 1 Squadron IAF Maharajpur Air Force Station Mirage-2000H No. 40 Wing IAF
No. 7 Squadron IAF Maharajpur Air Force Station Mirage-2000H No. 40 Wing IAF
No. 9 Squadron IAF Maharajpur Air Force Station Mirage-2000 No. 40 Wing IAF
TACDE Maharajpur Air Force Station Su-30 MKI, Dassault Mirage 2000 No. 40 Wing IAF

Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief

List of Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief
Rank Name From To
Air Vice Marshal Shivdev Singh 10 June 1963[5] 4 March 1966
Kundan Lal Sondhi 5 March 1966[5] 31 December 1966
Hari Chand Dewan 1 January 1967[5] 28 March 1968
Hrushikesh Moolgavkar 29 March 1968[5] 31 March 1971
Maurice Barker 1 April 1971[5] 15 June 1972
Bandi Sreeramulu Krishnarao 16 June 1972[5] 25 June 1972
Air Marshal 26 June 1972[5] 26 June 1974
Idris Hasan Latif 27 June 1974[5] 29 February 1976
George Kanishtkumar John 1 March 1976[5] 31 January 1977
Gian Dev Sharma 1 February 1977[5] 31 December 1978
Trilochan Singh Brar 10 February 1979[5] 20 September 1981
Balwant Wickram Chauhan 21 September 1981[5] 31 December 1983
Denis Anthony Lafontaine 1 January 1984[5] 31 October 1984
Ripu Daman Sahni 6 November 1984[5] 31 May 1986
Johney William Greene 1 June 1986[5] 31 March 1987
Nirmal Chandra Suri 1 April 1987[5] 29 February 1988
Mohinder Singh Bawa 1 March 1988[5] 31 December 1990
Swaroop Krishna Kaul 11 February 1991[5] 30 April 1992
Pondicherry Jayarao Jayakumar 1 May 1992[5] 28 February 1993
Naresh Kumar 1 March 1993[5] 31 May 1995
Dev Nath Rathore 1 June 1995[5] 30 June 1996
Vinod Patney 1 July 1996[5] 31 March 1997
Srinivasapuram Krishnaswamy 1 April 1997[5] 30 November 1997
Vinod Kumar Bhatia 1 December 1997[5] 31 October 1999
Vinod Patney 1 November 1999[5] 31 July 2000
Vinod Kumar Verma 1 August 2000[5] 30 April 2002
Shashindra Pal Tyagi 1 May 2002[5] 31 January 2003
Brijendra Mohan Bali 1 February 2003[5] 31 March 2004
Raghu Rajan 1 April 2004[5] 30 April 2005
Jaspal Singh Gujral 1 May 2005[5] 31 October 2006
Pradeep Vasant Naik 1 November 2006[5] 31 December 2007
Packiam Paul Rajkumar 1 January 2008[5] 30 June 2009
Gurdip Singh Kochar 1 July 2009[5] 31 October 2011
Arup Raha 1 November 2011[5] 31 May 2012
Jasvinder Chauhan 1 June 2012[5] 31 July 2014
Kulwant Singh Gill 1 August 2014[5] 31 December 2015
Shyam Bihari Prasad Sinha 1 January 2016[5] 31 December 2018
Rajesh Kumar 1 January 2019[5] 31 January 2021
Amit Tiwari 1 February 2021[5] 31 May 2021
Richard John Duckworth 1 July 2021[5] 30 June 2022
Amar Preet Singh 1 July 2022[6] Incumbent

Operations

The CAC mainly patrols the North Central part of India. It has airbases at Agra, Bareilly, Gorakhpur, Gwalior and Bamraulli and some units are located at Bihta, Darbhanga, Bakshi-ka-Talab, Nagpur, Kanpur, Nainital, Memaura and Varanasi.[4]

The CAC operates fixed-wing aircraft such as the Mirage 2000, Antonov An-32, Ilyushin Il-76 and Dornier 228; and helicopters such as the Mil Mi-8, Mil Mi-17 and Mil Mi-26.[citation needed]

See also

References

  1. ^ "AIR MARSHAL AP SINGH ASSUMES THE APPOINTMENT OF AOC-IN-C CENTRAL AIR COMMAND" (Press release). PIB. 1 July 2022.
  2. ^ @PROdefprayagraj (28 October 2021). "Air Marshal RGK Kapoor VM took over as Senior Air Staff Officer, HQ Central Air Command on 26 Oct 2021" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  3. ^ AVM A K Tiwari (15 August 2012). Reorganising the Air Force For Future Operations. ISBN 9789381411728.
  4. ^ a b c d e "Central Air Command: A dominant power in the sky". Times of India.
  5. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z aa ab ac ad ae af ag ah ai aj ak al am an "Central Air Command - BRF". Bharat Rakshak. Retrieved 14 May 2021.
  6. ^ "AIR MARSHAL AP SINGH ASSUMES THE APPOINTMENT OF AOC-IN-C CENTRAL AIR COMMAND" (Press release). PIB. 1 July 2022.