Varthaman, who became the face of the tense military confrontation between India and Pakistan, conveyed to the IAF brass that he wants to return to the cockpit as soon as possible, officials said Sunday. For the last two days, the Indian Air Force (IAF) has got undergoing medical treatment at a military hospital here.
Varthaman said senior IAF commanders and doctors treating him that he wants to start at the earliest, the officials said.
On Wednesday, he became the first IAF pilot to shoot down an F-16 fighter jet during an aerial combat with the Pakistani Air Force. Varthaman was captured by the Pakistani Army after his MiG-21 Bison jet hit in a fierce dogfight.
He returned to India
Minister of State for Defense Subhash Rao Bhamre met IAF Wing Commander #AbhinandanVarthaman at Army Hospital Resea … https://t.co/OygIgIMR7J
– ANI (@ANI) 1551622485000
His health condition is being monitored by a group of doctors at the Army’s Research and Referral Hospital, the officials said.
“The efforts have been to ensure that he returns to the cockpit soon,” said a military official.
The officials said Varthaman has been in high spirits despite the harassment he suffered in Pakistan.
Varthaman arrived in the Indian capital on an IAF flight around 11:45 pm Friday, nearly two-and-half hours after he crossed over to India via the Attari-Wagah border.
The IAF pilot was first taken to Air Force Central Medical Establishment (AFCME), a compact and specialized medical evaluation center for aircrew of all three services.
Later he was brought to the Army’s Research and Referral Hospital.
After he was captured, Varthaman showed courage and grace in handling the most difficult circumstances for which he was praised by politicians, strategic affairs specialists, ex-servicemen, celebrities and people in general.
BS Dhanoa met Varthaman separately on Saturday during which he apprised them about the mental trauma he was subjected during his captivity in Pakistan.
During the meeting, the defense minister commenced him on his valor and expressed his gratitude for the nation’s gratitude.
Tensions between India and Pakistan escalated after Indian fighters bombed terror group
‘s biggest training camp near Balakot, deep inside Pakistan
Pakistan retaliated by trying to target Indian military installations on Wednesday. However, the IAF thwarted their plans.
The Indian attack on the JeM camp came 12 days after the terror outfit claimed responsibility for a CRPF convoy in Kashmir, killing 40 soldiers.