Group Captain Sandeep Singh Chhabra has shown high degree of skill and extreme precision to land a military aircraft in the challenging airfields of Leh and Thoise was thus recently hailed by the Indian Air Force for completing 1000 incident-free landings here.
For Group Captain Chhabra, who has over 8500 hours of flying experience, flying these aerial fortresses comes quite naturally considering that 5000 hours of his total flying experience has come from being inside the IL-76/78. In addition, the officer is only one of a few who has been cleared for operations at Leh and Thoise airfields at night.
Flying IAF’s IL-76MD, the braveheart pilot today completed 1000 safe landings at the Leh and Thoise airfields which are at an elevation of 10,000 feet. Both airfields are surrounded by extremely challenging terrains which make them among the toughest in the world. This is especially true for an aircraft the size of IL-76 which are mammoth and designed for airlifting heavy machinery to remote locations. Some of these aircraft are also used as refueling tankers.