Locals on cloud nine as Muktsar pilot flies Rafale home

Locals on cloud nine as Muktsar pilot flies Rafale home

Squadron Leader Ranjit Singh Sidhu. Tribune photo

Archit Watts

Tribune News Service

Gidderbaha/Muktsar, July 29

Residents of Muktsar district had a reason to cheer today as one of the five Rafale fighter jets, which landed today in Ambala, was flown by Squadron Leader Ranjit Singh Sidhu, who belongs to Gidderbaha town here.

Ranjit studied till Class XII at Malwa School in Gidderbaha. His teachers remember him as an all-rounder. “Ranjit was good in both studies and sports. Besides, he had leadership qualities as well. I interacted with him yesterday when he was in the UAE. I congratulated him for getting an opportunity to bring the fighter jet to our country. It is indeed a big achievement as the whole nation was glued to television screens to see the landing of fighter jets. We feel with his success, many others will get inspiration to join the armed forces,” said Jasbir Singh Brar, vice-principal, Malwa School, Gidderbaha.

He said, “Ranjit did his Class XII in 1999 and got inspiration to join the Indian Air Force from the then principal Venu Gopal, a retired squadron leader himself. Ranjit cleared his NDA exam in 2000. Whenever he comes to Gidderbaha, he never forgets to visit the school. Ranjit’s father Gurmeet Singh has retired from the Revenue Department. His parents now reside in Gidderbaha, but they have gone to Canada to the meet their daughter, who is married there.”

Notably, Malwa School is run by a trust formed by former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s family. The former CM himself is the chairman of the trust. Ranjit’s uncle Gurdarshan Singh said, “Ranjit had earlier gone to bring the Sukhoi jet. Now, he went to France to bring the Rafale. His love for the Air Force started when he was studying in Class X.”

Meanwhile, Harvinder Singh, a resident of Gidderbaha, said, “It is a proud moment for Gidderbaha town and Muktsar district. Everyone is wishing for the bright future of Ranjit, who has already achieved a lot.”

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