No. 1 Squadron, Indian Air Force

No. 1 Squadron, Indian Air Force

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No. 1 Squadron, Indian Air Force

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No. 1 Squadron (The Tigers) is the oldest squadron of the Indian Air Force. It operates as an air superiority, precision strike and electronic warfare unit. Based at Gwalior AFB, No. 1 Squadron falls under the Central Air Command, and along with No. 7 Squadron (Battle Axes), No. 9 Squadron (Wolf Pack), and "TACDE", forms a part of 40 Wing of the Indian Air Force.

Unit history

Formation

No. 1 Squadron, Indian Air Force, the first squadron of the Royal Indian Air Force, was raised on 1 April 1933 at Drigh Road, Karachi and equipped with four Westland Wapiti aircraft. The Indian element consisted of 9 officers and 14 Muslim technicians, then known as Hawai Sepoys.

The early history of No. 1 Squadron is synonymous with the history of the Indian Air Force. It was formed on the day that the Indian Air Force received its first batch of trained pilots from RAF Cranwell. The first batch of Indians at Cranwell were Ali Ahmed Khan, H.C. Sircar, Subroto Mukerjee, (later Air Marshal and the first Indian Chief of the Air Staff), A.B. Awan, Asgar Khan, Mohmmad Hanif, Bhupendra Singh, Amarjit Singh Walayat Ali Khan and J.N. Tandon. They had started training in 1930 and were commissioned in late 1932. Pilot Officer Tandon was too short to qualify for flying training and joined as the Equipment Officer. Flight Lieutenant (later Air Vice-Marshal) Cecil Bouchier, DFC from the Royal Air Force was the first Commanding Officer of the Squadron.

The first batch were later joined by......
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