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Subroto Mukherjee was the first Indian Chief of IAF

First Indian Chief of Air Staff

Air Marshal Subroto Mukherjee was the first Indian Chief of Air Staff of Indian Air Force. He was Air Chief from 1 April 1954 to 8 November 1960. He was one of the six recruits selected for training at RAF Cranwell, when the decision to give commissions in the RAF to Indians was taken. He was inducted in the Indian Air Force as pilot in 1933, when the first Indian Air Force Squadron was formed. In July 1938,he was put in command of 'B' flight of the No.1 IAF Squadron in the rank of Flying Officer. Subroto Mukherjee became the first Indian Officer to command a Squadron when he took over No.1 on 16 March 1939.

On 15 August 1947, when India achieved Independence, Air Commodore Mukherjee was promoted to Air Vice Marshal and posted as the Deputy Chief of Air Staff at Air HQ. On 1 April 1954, Mukherjee took over from Air Marshal Gerald Gibbs as the Chief of Air Staff of the Indian Air Force. Subroto Mukherjee died on 8 November 1960 in a Tokyo restaurant, when he choked on the food which blocked his air passage.

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