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Flight Lieutenant Jagan Nath Vijayaraghavan was born on 18th July 1933. He dreamt of joining the Armed Forces since his childhood. And his dream came true when he got selected to join the IAF. He got commissioned into the flying branch of the Indian Air Force on 01 April 1953 at the age of just 20 years. He completed the 60th Pilots course at Air Force Station Hakimpet and earned his wings as a fighter pilot. After completing his training, he got posted to an Air Force flying base and started his operational flying. He got promoted to the rank of Flying Officer on 01 April 1954. Within few years Flying Officer Jagan Nath got promoted to the rank of Flight Lieutenant and also gathered experience of flying various fighter aircraft of the IAF. In 1962, he got posted as a flying instructor to train the young pilots on various maneuvers of operational flying.

Service Number4483GD(P)
RankFlight Lieutenant
Service Indian Air Force
AwardKirti Chakra
Date of Martyrdom14th May 1962

In 1962, Flt Lt Jagan Nath Vijayaraghavan was serving as a flying instructor with the responsibility of training the young pilots of the IAF on various air operations. Flt Lt Jagan Nath had to fly many sorties per day along with different trainee pilots in dual-seat trainer aircraft. On the 14th of May, he was tasked to go on a sortie with Pilot Officer Evans. As Flt Lt Jagan Nath was carrying out a spinning exercise along with his pupil, he noticed that the aircraft failed to come out of the spin. Realizing the gravity of the situation, Flt Lt Jagan Nath took over the controls of the aircraft but then also, it still failed to respond and started losing height rapidly.
Flt Lt Jagan Nath then ordered Pilot Officer Evans to bail out but by the time he did so, the aircraft had lost height to a considerable extent. It was at a too low height for Flt Lt Jagan Nath to abandon it. Pilot Officer Evans ejected successfully and escaped with minor injuries. However, the aircraft crashed and Flt Lt Jagan Nath could not survive the crash. Flt Lt Jagan Nath displayed conspicuous gallantry and a spirit of self-sacrifice following the highest traditions of the Indian Air Force.

Flt Lt Jagan Nath Vijayaraghavan was given the nation’s second-highest peacetime gallantry award, “Kirti Chakra” for his bravery, professional competence, camaraderie, and devotion to duty.

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