Arjan Singh Aulakh
Marshal of the Air Force Arjan Singh Aulakh DFC. is the only officer of the Indian Air Force who was given a Five Star General's rank; equal to a Field Marshal.
He was born on April 15, 1919 in Lyalpur, in a Jat Sikh Aulakh family, and educated at Montgomery India (now in Pakistan). He entered the RAF College Cranwell in 1938 and was commissioned as a Pilot Officer in December 1939. He led No.1 Squadron, Indian Air Force into command during the Arakan Campaign in 1944. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) in 1944, and commanded the Indian Air Force Exhibition Flight in 1945. He was Chief of the Air Staff or CAS, from August 1]], 1964 to July 15, 1969, and was awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 1965. He was Lt. Governor of Delhi and was made Marshal of the Air Force in January, 2002.
R S Joon writes
Air Chief Marshal Arjan Singh (Aulakh) was born on 15 April 1919 at Lyallpur. His gotra is Aulakh and his village is Kohali in district Amritsar. He got commissioned in the Royal Air force in 1939. He won a DFC for successful command of a squadron in Burma in 1945.
In 1963, he became Chief of the Air Staff, the highest rank attained by a Jat in the three services.
His handling of the Indian Air Force during the Indo Pak conflict of 1965 won him world wide fame and the Padam Vibhushan. By personal example he infused a spirit of daring in his young pilots who hunted the enemy Saber Jets with their Gnats. They destroyed enemy strongholds and blunted their armoured division by destroying 14 Pattons in one attack.
They destroyed an enemy train carrying important equipment. Enemy lost 70 aeroplanes against our 35. Under the able guidance of Air Chief Marshal Arjan Singh the Indian Air Force gained a place of pride amongst the Air Forces of the world.
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- Ram Sarup Joon, History of the Jats/Chapter XIII, p.241