Air Marshal Khanna Takes Over as Maintenance Head of the Indian Air Force (IAF)

Air Marshal Khanna Takes Over as Maintenance Head of the Indian Air Force (IAF) 
Air Marshal Virender Mohan Khanna assumes the responsibilities of Air Officer-in-charge Maintenance (AOM) at Air Headquarters, New Delhi today.

The Air Marshal was commissioned in the Mechanical stream of Aeronautical Engineering branch in IAF on 25 July 1977. He is a graduate from Regional Engineering College, Kurukshetra and post graduate in Industrial Engineering and Management from IIT, Kharagpur. He is an also an alumnus of the prestigious Defence Services Staff College, Wellington. Additionally, he also acquired post graduate diploma in Journalism and Human Rights.

During his career spanning 38 years, the officer has held important appointments of Director General (Aircraft) and Assistance Chief of Air Staff Engg (Transport and Helicopters) at Air HQ, Senior Maintenance Staff Officer and Chief Engineering Officer at HQ Eastern Air Command. The officer has also served at various Base Repair Depots as Chief of Aircraft, Chief of Production and Planning and Commanding Officer. He was instrumental in successful induction of large number of MI-17 V5 helicopters, Hawk AJT and Pilatus aircraft.

Air Marshal had led a team of IAF Pilots and Maintenance Officers which trained pilots and engineers of Botswana Defence Force thus strengthening Indo-Africa ties. Air Marshal has served as Flight Engineer and flown MI-8, MI-17 and MI-26, the largest helicopters in the world based at Chandigarh.

An avid sportsman, Air Marshal was also the member of two Indian Expeditions to Antarctica where IAF played a pivotal role in setting up Indian permanent Bases Dakshin Gangotri and Maitri.

Air Marshal has been decorated by President of India with Vishisht Seva Medal and Ati Vishisht Seva Medal. 

Visit of INS Sahyadri at Manila, Philippines 
Indian Naval Ship Sahyadri, currently on operational deployment to South China Sea and North West Pacific region in pursuance of India’s ‘Act East’ policy, entered today at Manila. The ship is likely to be at Manila till 4th November for extensive interactions with the Philippine Navy. Bilateral relations between India and the Philippines, based on shared values of anti-colonialism, strong democratic polity and South - South Cooperation have been growing significantly in the recent past, spurred by both economic as well as security engagements. Regular foreign policy consultations and security dialogue meetings have provided impetus to the bilateral relationship.

The visit of INS Sahyadri is aimed at strengthening bilateral ties and enhancing inter-operability between navies of the two countries. INS Sahyadri is an indigenously built warship of the Shivalik Class. Inducted into the Indian Navy on 21 July 12, the multi-role stealth frigate, boasts of an impressive array of weaponry in her arsenal. Long range anti-ship missiles, medium and short range surface to air missiles augmented by powerful guns of different calibres provide a formidable shield against all types of surface and air threats. The capability to carry two integral multi-role helicopters significantly enhances the potency of this ship. INS Sahyadri, is presently being commanded by Captain Kunal Singh Rajkumar.

During the stay in harbour, various activities aimed at enhancing cooperation between the two navies are planned. These include official calls on local naval and civilian dignitaries, reception on board INS Sahyadri, visits to the ship by the local populace, guided tours for Indian Naval personnel and professional interaction between personnel of both the navies.

On departure, the ship is planned to exercise with Philippine Navy ships for improving interoperability in communication as well as Search and Rescue procedures. 

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