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New Delhi: Arjan Singh was the only officer of the Indian Air Force to be promoted to the five-star rank equivalent to a Field Marshal. Air Marshal Singh led the Indian Air Force in the 1965 war with Pakistan which he says was prematurely terminated on intervention by the United Nations. Had it gone on for a few more days, India’s victory would have been decisive.
Born in Punjab town of Lyallpur (now Faisalabad, Pakistan), Singh was Chief of the Air Staff from August 1, 1964, to July 15, 1969, and was awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 1965.
Now 96 years old, Air Marshal Arjan Singh revisits the 1965 India-Pakistan war in an email interview with IANS saying that the IAF, though initially surprised by the attack, gained air superiority over Pakistan in three days which crippled their air force.
Q. Do you feel the Indian Air Force was able to outsmart the Pakistan Air Force in the 1965 War?
A. When the Pakistan Air Force attacked our bases in Pathankot and Kalaikunda, we suffered initial reverses. However, the Indian Air Force was given a go-ahead by then defence minister Yaswantrao Chavan, our great Maratha Leader, to launch the air attack. We were able to recover the operational balance quickly and later achieved complete air superiority over them within three days. The aircraft from Pathankot, Ambala and Adampur were able to strike at all the major air bases in Pakistan like Sargodha, Peshawar, Kohat and so on. The air attacks were planned in such a manner that our aircraft would fly over Kashmir valley which provided us covers against the radar detection in Pakistan.
We were able to destroy the major supply lines and vital installations in almost all Pakistani cities. Pakistan does not have much width and according to our information they moved their aircraft to safer location in Afghanistan in a place called Zahidan.
Q. Both India and Pakistan claim victory in the war. Why do you think we won?
A. For political reasons, Pakistan claims victory in the 1965 war. In my opinion, the war ended in a kind of stalemate. We were in a position of strength. Had the war continued for a few more days, we would have gained a decisive victory. I advised then prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri not to agree for ceasefire. But I think he was under pressure from the United Nations and some countries. Shastri was not really a weak man at all. He was a tough man and clear in his decision making. He was in fact a man of peace and never wanted the population of either country to suffer because of the war. He gave only one direction – try not to hit the civilian population.
Q. Do you feel the war was a turning point in establishing the air force as an entity that could ably back the ground forces?
A. The Indian Air Force was actively involved during the Second World War. I was commanding No.1 Squadron at Imphal where it was involved in the Burma operations with the Japanese. Later in 1948, IAF also actively supported the ground forces in Kashmir. We did not fight at all in 1962. But I must tell you – three months before the 1965 war, I spoke to Shastri and advised him to use IAF in any future war. We were given a decisive go ahead by the leadership in 1965 and IAF performed exceptionally well. IAF was able to do much damage in Pakistan.
Q. Would it be correct to say that the 1965 War saw aircraft of IAF and PAF engage in combat for the first time? Back then, how did you compare India’s preparedness with Pakistan?
A. Pakistan had qualitatively and technologically superior aircraft like Sabres and Starfighters. We had Gnats, Hunters, Mysteres and Vampires. Pakistan had massive American support. They had the latest radars which gave them much coverage and therefore the edge. I think they became overconfident that IAF will not be used in the war as happened in the 1962 India-China War. From the time IAF was pressed into action, the operational balance started shifting towards our side. This shows that IAF was operationally ready for any misadventure by the enemy.
Q. As far as the IAF is concerned, what were the areas where we excelled? At the same time, what were the areas we didn’t do as well as you had expected? Where did we fail and why?
A. In a war, the aggressor will always have an initial advantage. Pakistan attacked us and we suffered initial losses. We regained the operational balance quickly. Pakistanis are good fighters. But here we were fighting for our country against an aggressor. Our pilots fought with valour and courage and instilled fear among the enemy.
In hindsight, I feel I should not have used the Vampires in the war as they were slow to maneouvre and were generally vulnerable. After the war, we started the modernisation of our Air Force by recommending the purchase of modern aircraft and radars.
Q. For someone who was at the helm of affairs, what were your anxious moments during the war?
A. I was neither anxious nor nervous during 1965. I was confident of our ability and operational preparedness. During the peace time, we are trained to fight. I had actively seen operations during the Second World War. We were 21 pilots who had gone to Imphal to fight against the Japanese Air Force and only five returned. I was there for one year and that experience matured me immensely.
Q. How do you recall your interactions with political leaders during war time? Were there any points of disagreement between the IAF and the political leadership and how was it resolved?
A. I must tell you that Pakistan tried to cut off Jammu and Kashmir through an armoured-cum-infantry attack on the Akhnoor Sector. Gen J.N. Chaudhari came to my office in Vayu Bhawan and told me that unless the IAF steps in, it would be difficult to stop the Pakistanis in the Chamb-Jaurian sector. I told him that with IAF involvement, the conflict will escalate to a full-fledged war. We went to the then defence minister Chavan who asked me if IAF was ready. I promptly said yes. In the next minute, he gave a decision to go ahead to launch the strikes. This decisive leadership in 1965 was very important in achieving an operational edge with Pakistan.
Q. Do you feel there are chances of India going to war with Pakistan again? If that happens, are we better prepared than Pakistan?
A. The tensions with Pakistan will continue and I don’t see any solution to the problem. The proxy war in Kashmir is not doing any good to the relations between us. The recent ceasefire violations where some of our troops were killed is not acceptable at all. Beheading of soldiers is not an act done by any civilized army. The world knows that the Pakistan sponsored terrorists are infiltrating through the LoC (Line of Control) to create trouble for us.
(By Priyanka, IANS)
Between zoom meetings, webinars, you're walking a tight rope to balance work from home and domestic chores, in all this its easy to forget about taking care of yourself. It's imperative to squeeze in a few hours to indulge in yourself, whether its a massage or a hair spa treatment.
It comes with a range of accessories which includes the 40mm Airwrap long barrels, 30mm Airwra barrels, a Firm smoothing brush, a Soft smoothing brush, a Round volumising brush, the Pre-styling dryer, a non-slip heat-resistant mat to place your styler on, a Storage case and even a Filter cleaning brush. A Storage bag (Iron/Fuchsia) securely stores your Dyson Airwrap when you're on the move.
The different styling attachments cater to unique hair needs and are designed for different hair styles. | File
The different styling attachments cater to unique hair needs and are designed for different hair styles. For instance the 30 mm barrels create and set voluminous curls. With clockwise and counter-clockwise barrels for symmetrical curls. The 40 mm barrels create and set loose curls or waves. The Firm smoothing brush creates a straighter style with less frizz ad fewer flyways, with firm bristles engineered to control unruly, frizz prone hair. The pre- styling dryer takes hair from wet to damp, ready for styling. The round volumizing brush directs air into the hair to give body, and the bristles create tension to shape hair as it dries, Ideal for limp, flat hair. To create a sooth, blow-dry finish. With soft bristles engineered to be gentle on the scalp.
It features three precise airflow speeds, to suit your styling and four precise heat settings, including constant cold shot. The cold shot immediately deactivates the heating element, for cooler air to set your style. The Coanda to curl barrels harness an aerodynamic phenomenon and the Coanda to smooth which uses Dyson brushes to attract hair to the surface of the brush, propelling air along the hair strands for a smooth, straighter style. It's powered by the Dyson digital motor V9, a 13-blade impeller spins at up to 110,000rpm, generating 3.2kPa. Powerful enough to produce the air pressure needed to create the Coanda effect. The intelligent heat control measures airflow temperature over 40 times a second, intelligently controlling the heating element to keep the temperature under a 150 degree Celsius. Preventing extreme heat damage. "Great styling and takes lesser effort than the usual blow drying. Saving lots of visits to the salon, absolutely love it!" says a salon regular who switched her weekly visits to the salon for the at home Dyson experience. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Dyson, hair, hair styles, styling, airflow, non-slip heat-resistant mat, Pre-styling dryer, olumising brush, smoothing brush, Dyson Airwrap
An international team of astronomers has identified 366 new exoplanets, using data from the NASA Kepler Space Telescope's K2 mission. The findings, described in a paper published in the Astronomical Journal, showed a planetary system that comprises a star and at least two gas giant planets, each roughly the size of Saturn and located unusually close to one another.
The discovery is significant because it's rare to find gas giants -- like Saturn in the solar system -- as close to their host star as they were in this case. The researchers cannot yet explain why it occurred there, but it makes the finding especially useful because it could help scientists form a more accurate understanding of the parameters for how planets and planetary systems develop.
An international team of astronomers has identified 366 new exoplanets, using data from the NASA Kepler Space Telescope's K2 mission. | NASA
"The discovery of each new world provides a unique glimpse into the physics that play a role in planet formation," said lead author Jon Zink, a UCLA postdoctoral scholar. The findings could be a significant step toward helping astronomers understand which types of stars are most likely to have planets orbiting them and what that indicates about the building blocks needed for successful planet formation, acoording to the study. "We need to look at a wide range of stars, not just ones like our sun, to understand that," Zink said.
The term "exoplanets" is used to describe planets outside of the solar system. The number of exoplanets that have been identified by astronomers numbers fewer than 5,000 in all, so the identification of hundreds of new ones is a significant advance. Kepler's original mission came to an unexpected end in 2013 when a mechanical failure left the spacecraft unable to precisely point at the patch of sky it had been observing for years.
But astronomers repurposed the telescope for a new mission known as K2, whose objective is to identify exoplanets near distant stars. Data from K2 is helping scientists understand how stars' location in the galaxy influences what kind of planets are able to form around them. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Astronomers, discover, possible, exoplanets, telescope, mission, planets
By Dr Anil Batra
The winter comes with its own set of hassles. New moms have to be careful because they have to take care of themselves and their babies. It becomes imperative to protect babies from the harsh season. The immune system of newborn babies is developing, which makes them susceptible to respiratory infections. But, you can take preventive measures to keep your child warm and safe. Newborn babies need extra care until their immune system becomes stronger to protect their bodies from the harmful effects of viruses and bacteria that usually become more active in the winter season. A drop in the temperature can aggravate different processes in the body, therefore, moms need to take extra care of newborn babies during winters.
New moms can follow the given tips to take care of their little ones and protect them from the harmful effects of harsh winds blowing outside.
Keep the temperature warm in the baby's room: Use a portable heater in the baby's room to keep the temperature warm. The air becomes dry due to the excessive use of a heater. Therefore, keeping a humidifier to balance the moisture levels.
Apply moisturizer: The baby's skin is very sensitive and the harsh, dry, and cold air can make the skin dry. Therefore, apply a good moisturizer to keep it soft and smooth. Choose a moisturizer made of milk cream and butter, especially for children. This will keep the skin of your baby soft.
Massage: Massage is important to keep your baby's skin soft and healthy. Massage helps to improve the blood circulation in the body that helps in boosting strength. Use a natural oil to massage the body of your child. Make sure the room is warm where you massage the baby.
Massage helps to improve the blood circulation in the body that helps in boosting strength. | Photo by Khoa Pham on Unsplash
Avoid using heavy blankets: You can comfort your baby by laying a light blanket to keep your baby warm. Avoid using a heavy blanket to cover your baby during winters because your baby would not be able to move his arms and legs while sleeping. In this process, your baby may pull it up on its face and this can cause respiratory distress. Thus, use a light blanket and keep the room temperature optimum.
Dress your baby comfortably: Choose comfortable dressing for your baby. Avoid wrapping your baby in thick sweaters, gloves, and socks. This will restrict its movement and he/she will become irritable. Choose clothes depending on the room temperature. The clothes should cover his/her baby but should not restrict movement. You can use light gloves and socks to cover your hands and feet to keep your baby warm at night.
Breastfeeding: Breastfeeding is the most important activity that can keep your baby healthy. Breast milk consists of required nutrients and antibodies that will enhance the immune system of your baby and will protect him/her against diseases. During breastfeeding your baby will feel warm and cosy that will also give him comfort.
Avoid using a heavy blanket to cover your baby during winters because your baby would not be able to move his arms and legs while sleeping | Flickr
Maintain proper hygiene: Mothers should be careful when handling newborn babies in winters. You will be the first point of contact for your baby. Therefore, make sure you keep yourself clean and healthy. Wash your hands before handling your baby. Germs can easily enter your baby's body through your dirty hands. Therefore, make sure you wash your hands or sanitize them before attending to your baby. Also, ask visitors to wash their hands.
Take care outdoors: If you want to take your child outdoors make sure it is not freezing temperature. Take your child out for fresh air only if the temperature is not too cold and remember to cover your baby properly before taking them out. Taking your baby out will help to give fresh air and will improve their health.
Common issues that may arise in newborn babies during winters:
Winter brings flu and other viruses that can easily spread and affect anyone. Common issues that may arise in newborn babies during winters include the following:
- Skin allergies
- Digestive issues
Parents can take care of their newborn babies from various diseases that may affect them in the winters in the following ways:
* If your baby suffers during the winter season, you should consult a pediatrician.
* You can give a homemade solution if your baby suffers from a cold. Check with the doctor and you can only give a saline solution or nasal drops.
* Keep your baby well hydrated. Keep breastfeeding your baby and also give water if necessary.
* Cuddle your baby lovingly and give him warmth along with other precautions.
* In the first winter, you can take preventive measures to take care of your little ones and keep them safe. Maintain proper hygiene and keep your house warm. Avoid visitors if your child is not feeling well.
It is not necessary to give a bath to your baby every day. You can bathe your baby after 2-3 days in winter. | Photo by Aditya Romansa on Unsplash
How often to give a bath to your baby in winter?
It is not necessary to give a bath to your baby every day. You can bathe your baby after 2-3 days in winter. You can sponge bathe your newborn every other day in winter. Check the temperature of the room before giving a bath to your baby. The room temperature should be warm and comfortable for your baby. Check the temperature of the water. Make sure the water is not too hot or cold. The temperature of the water should be right for the body of your baby. Check the temperature by touching the water with your elbow or wrist. Use mild soap and shampoo to bathe your baby in winter. Also, apply oil and moisturizer to the skin to keep it soft and prevent skin allergies. (IANS/ MBI)
Keywords: Winter, care tips, newborn, baby, hygiene, breastfeeding, blanket