Air Marshal Phillip Rajkumar, PVSM, AVSM (Retd)
Air Marshal Rajkumar was commissioned in the Flying Branch of the Indian Air Force in 1962. He served in front line fighter squadrons in the Eastern and Western Theaters for nine years. During this period, he flew 22 operational missions during the Indo-Pak war of September 1965 and was awarded a Mention in Despatch for gallantry. In 1971 he was selected to undergo training as an experimental test pilot in France. His operational assignments were command of a front line fighter squadron in the Punjab sector and a Jaguar strike aircraft base in the central sector.
Air Marshal has been instrumental as part of the Aeronautical Development Agency, Bangalore to plan and execute the flight test programme of the Light Combat Aircraft, Tejas. The Tejas has now entered operational service with the IAF without any accidents or loss of aircraft. This was in large measure due to the state of the art flight testing philosophy and stringent procedures instituted at the National Flight Centre, Bangalore by the him.
After superannuation from the IAF at age 60, Air Marshal Rajkumar was appointed Director, Aeronautical Development Agency for a two year term till age 62. He was the President of the Aeronautical Society of India for a two year term and was elected an Honorary Fellow of the Society in 2002.
He is a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College in Wellington, Tamil Nadu and the Royal College of Defence Studies in London, He holds a Masters Degree in Strategic Studies from the University of Chennai.