Exam Notification 2024

Unsung hero of Indian Airforce- Vice Admiral Nilakanta Krishnanan

The Indian history is galore with stories of soldiers and common people who displayed acts of heroism while protecting the country against external and internal forces.

These are the heroes we look up to and also  remember for their bravery, intelligence, and sacrifice they made in the process.But, there are many unsung heroes whose heroics never made the light of the day. One such name is Vice Admiral Nilakanta Krishnan.


“If you cut open my chest, embedded in my heart you will see four letters in bold: NAVY.”

  • Rao Bahadur Mahadeva Nilakanta Ayyar an executive engineer has such a destiny that he had the privilege of being the father of such a son who wrote his name in the history of India with golden letters.
  • Krishnanan was the youngest in the family.
  • His elder brother chose the Civil Services sectors while Krishnanan has different desire of joining Indian armed forces.
  • He joined the Royal India Navy at the age of 16.
  • On 1st September 1940, he has promoted the rank of Sub- Lieutenant of Royal Indian Navy.
  • Krishnanan served the nation for 40 years and embellished with 14 medals.
  • He was awarded  Distinguished Service Cross for “courage, enterprise, and devotion to duty in operations in the Persian Gulf”
  • And also awarded by Padma Bhushan for his cognitive intelligence during Ghazi attack.
  • Krishnanan retired in 1976 and also met natural death in January 1982.


  • Before commencement of War, Pakistan hatches an evil plan to destroy INS Vikrant, India’s first aircraft carrier.
  • With this plan, Pakistan wanted to shudder the Indian Armed forces.
  • Pakistani destroyer submarine Ghazi was dispatched towards East Pakistan and got  2,200 nautical miles from Karachi to reach to watch range code-named Zone Mike in Madras.
  • The Indian Force Intelligence got to know the there was a submarine at East Pakistan who was targeting on INS Vikrant.
  • They immediately informed the East Naval Command about it.
  • At that time VA Krishnanan was the Commanding Chief of East Naval Command.
  • To save INS Vikrant to being targeted he plotted a plan of tricking the Pakistani.
  • On the way to Vizag matured INS Rajput  Captain Lt-Commander Inder Singh was ordered by him to take INS Rajput which was going to Vizag for decommissioning to 160 miles away from Vizag
  • So that Pakistani would consider it as INS Vikrant
  • He also gave instructions to create heavy remote traffic.
  • Furthermore, he ordered rations heavily as Pakistani would strongly believe that the INS Vikrant was toward Vizag.
  • As a result of ordering ration  Pakistani had stir belief that the INS Vikrant is on the way to Vizag.
  • Hence, they ordered to change the direction of Ghazi to Vizag.
  • Later  while travelling Ghazi sunk into sea later, a report indicated an inward blast occurred in the forward area of the Ghazi where torpedoes and mines were kept.
  • Consequently, Ghazi, one of Pakistan’s greatest weapons sank, inflicting no damage on the Indian vessel.
  • Therefore , INS was safely harboured in Andaman.
  • After Ghazi sunk in the sea, the INS Vikrant fired its first airstrike which stubborn the Pakistani And made India victorious during the war.


  • VA Krishnanan wrote an autobiography  “ THE SAILOR’S STORY “  in which he depicts all the situations and wars which listed him into war heroes.


  • For his memorable strategy which inevitably saved the INS Vikrant, Vice Admiral Krishnan was also awarded the famous Padma Bhushan.
  • He was one of the only two Indians who were awarded the Distinguished Service Cross in 1942.
  • He also received the Param Vishisht Seva Medal (PVSM) which is awarded in recognition of peace-time service of the most exceptional order.

His legacy lives on in our hearts and his brave actions are remembered as one of the most inspiring stories for years to come.

Students and Fellow Readers it’s so easy to write about them or hear about them but this act of sacrificing one’s own life for others needs courage which only a few men have. Let us all salute these men and see them as Our Role Models.

Jai Hind

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