Millennium Post

Two IAF pilot couples carry out rescue missions

These two IAF couples’ penchant for flying makes them special as they are currently flying Mi-17 and Cheetah choppers, negotiating the treacherous terrain and fickle weather to rescue the stranded in rain- ravaged Uttarakhand.

Together, they have have flown more than 100 hours to rescue stranded men, women and children amidst the tragedy unfolding in the rain-hit and flash flood devastated areas.

While the husbands fly the heavy lift Mi-17 choppers, the wives pilot the ‘Cheetahs’. The ongoing large-scale operations in the state are the first time they are operating together for a similar task.

Married four years back, Squadron Leaders S K Pradhan and Khushboo Gupta begin their day from the helipad here and get time to meet only late in the evening.

‘Well the only thing probably that makes us special is that we have the most important vow to keep with the IAF. We never thought we would be together on this mission,’ Pradhan said when he was talking to his wife, who was readying for a sortie to Rudraprayag. The other couple, married last year, Squadron Leader Vikram Thiagaraman and Flight Lieutenant Tanya Srinivas said they are both wedded to the bliss of taking to the air.
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