AGRA: In a bid to motivate youths to join Indian Air Force, a team of three officers and 17 airmen led by Wing Commander M I Akhter, completed a 500km long bicycle expedition.
The expedition was carried out by IAF personnel of Kheria air base which is also Asia’s biggest air base. The team of twenty pedaled their way through various towns and cities including Agra, Bharatpur, Dausa, Jaipur and others in seven days.
According to Gargi Malik Sinha public relation officer of defence forces in Eastern command, “It was a successful expedition which created awareness and motivated youth to join the world’s fourth largest air force and at the same time, it was also a memorable adventure which resonated the spirit of IAF.”
As per sources, there is a shortfall of 357 in the ranks of Wing Commanders and below in IAF, while 5,540 airmen are required. Currently, 6,159 recruits for airmen posts are under training.
In the month of March, defence minister Manohar Parrikar stated had stated that “Various measures are been taken to motivate youth for joining IAF and other defence forces, including “sustained image projection”, participation in career fairs and exhibitions and publicity campaign to create awareness. We are also working to to improved pay structure were being put into force to overcome shortage.”
The expedition was flagged-off by Air Commodore S Srinivasan VSM, Air Officer Commanding, Air Force Station, Agra on October 12, 2015 amidst a lot fanfare and grand ceremony.