Indian Air Force Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman returned home from Pakistan on Friday night to a hero’s welcome, two days after he was captured following air combat when his MiG 21 was shot down across the LoC. Pakistani officials handed over Varthaman to Indian officials, including from the IAF, at the Attari-Wagah Border.
However, the pilot was whisked away in a convoy by Indian officials away from the public glare. Later he was brought to Delhi from Amritsar in a special flight where he will undergo a medical checkup as per the IAF protocol.
Wearing blue blazer and grey trousers, he crossed over into India from the AttariWagah border at 9:20 PM. He was handed over by the Pakistan Rangers to the BSF following paperwork. Abhinandan was accompanied by an officer of the Pakistan Foreign Office and Indian Defence Attache Group Captain Joy Thomas Kurien.
— ANI (@ANI) March 1, 2019
Announcing the return of Wing Commander Abhinandan, Air Vice Marshal RGK Kapoor at Attari-Wagah border said, ‘Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman has been handed over to us. He will now be taken for a detailed medical checkup because he had to eject from an aircraft. IAF is happy to have him back.
Air Vice Marshal RGK Kapoor at Attari-Wagah border: Wing Commander #AbhinandanVarthaman has been handed over to us. He will now be taken for a detailed medical checkup because he had to eject from an aircraft. IAF is happy to have him back. pic.twitter.com/ZaaafjUQ90
— ANI (@ANI) March 1, 2019
Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman had on Wednesday morning ejected from his aircraft on PoK side after the MIG 21 shot down following Air Combat with Pakistan Air Force. He was later taken into custody by Pakistan Armed Forces. In videos circulated by Pakistani social accounts, the pilot is blindfolded and wounded. He calmly gives his name, service number and religion and says: “That is all I am supposed to tell you.”
Later, Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan announced in Parliament on Thursday that IAF Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman would be released on Friday as a “peace gesture”.
As soon as Abhinandan walked into Indian soil, the entire nation hailed the moment and congratulated the IAF pilot. Following which Twitter got flooded with admiring messages. Political Leaders including Prime Minister Narendra Modi saluted Abhinandan and welcomed him.
Here is a look at some Top Tweets :
Welcome Home Wing Commander Abhinandan!
The nation is proud of your exemplary courage.
Our armed forces are an inspiration for 130 crore Indians.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) March 1, 2019
🇮🇳 Wing Cdr. Abhinandan, your dignity, poise and bravery made us all proud. Welcome back and much love. 🇮🇳
— Rahul Gandhi (@RahulGandhi) March 1, 2019
Welcome Home! The entire Nation is proud of Wing Commander Abhinandan.
— Rajnath Singh (@rajnathsingh) March 1, 2019
Proud of you Wing Commander #AbhinandanVarthaman. The entire nation appreciates your valour and grit. You held your calm in the face of adversity. You are an inspiration to our youth. Salute. Vande Mataram.
— Nirmala Sitharaman (@nsitharaman) March 1, 2019
The hero finally walks back. A grateful nation salutes Wing Commander Abhinandan. You are an inspiration for all of us
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) March 1, 2019
विंग कमांडर अभिनंदन आप को दिल से सलाम. सारे देश को आप पर गर्व है। #WelcomeHomeAbhinandan
— Akhilesh Yadav (@yadavakhilesh) March 1, 2019
— M.K.Stalin (@mkstalin) March 1, 2019
— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) March 1, 2019
India Salutes you Wing Commander Abhinanand! Welcome Back! You are the real hero. #WelcomeHomeAbhinandan
— Tejashwi Yadav (@yadavtejashwi) March 1, 2019
The entire Nation is proud of Wing Commander Abhinandan.
— Vijay Rupani (@vijayrupanibjp) March 1, 2019
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