A day after the demise of Arjan Singh, the mortal remains of the sole Marshal of the Indian Air Force were brought to his residence in New Delhi early on Sunday morning. According to the Home Ministry spokesperson, the last rites of Marshal Singh will be performed on Monday at Brar Square in New Delhi at 10:00 am. Arjan Singh will be accorded a state funeral, the spokesperson added.
“As a mark of respect to the departed dignitary, a state funeral will be accorded and national flag will fly half-mast on the day of the funeral (September 18) in Delhi on all buildings where it is flown regularly,” a Home Ministry spokesperson said.
Marshal of Indian Air Force Arjan Singh, 98, passed away on Saturday at the Army’s Research and Referral Hospital after suffering a cardiac arrest. He was born in Lyallpur district (now in Pakistan) on April 15, 1919, to a family of soldiers. In 1938, he joined the nascent IAF after completing education from the Government College in Lahore. He was posted as a Pilot Officer in Karachi, where he took part in operations against tribals in the North-West Frontier Province (NWFP).
He had the honour of leading the fly-past of over 100 IAF aircraft over the Red Fort on India’s first Independence Day, August 15, 1947. He was awarded the Padma Vibhushan award in 1965, the second highest civilian honour in the country. On 26th January 2002, during Republic Day parade, he was granted the honorary rank of Marshal, the military’s highest rank. He received the rank before two Army Chiefs, K M Carriappa and Sam Manekshaw.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Arjan Singh at the hospital on Saturday. After his death, the PM expressed his grief in a social media post. “We remember his outstanding service to the nation,” he said. “My thoughts are with his family & those mourning the demise of a distinguished air warrior & fine human, Marshal of the IAF Arjan Singh. RIP,” PM Modi added on Twitter.