Queen Maud Land is c 2.7 million sq Kilometers region of Antarctica claimed as dependent teritory by Norway. It lies between similar British Antarctic and Australian Antarctic Territories.
Research Stations in Queen maud Land are connected by Dronning Maud Land Air Network Project (DROMLAN) which is a co-operative arrangement for transportation between eleven nations in East Antractica. The eleven nations are Norway,Sweden,Germany,South Africa,India,Russia, Japan,Finland,Belgium,Britain.
Norway issued a set of two stamps on Norway Antarctica Research Expedition on 18 Apr 1985. A Cover is listed with two stamps on Queen Maud Land station of Norway in Antarctic.
The Indian Coast Guard (ICG) protects India’s maritime interests and enforces maritime laws with jurisdiction over the territorial waters of India including its contiguous zone and exclusive economic zone. It works in close co-operation with Indian Navy, Indian Customs, Fisheries Department, Central and State Police Forces. The Motto of ICG is “WE PROTECT”.
01 Feb every year is celebrated as Coast Guard Day (Interim Coast Guard was established on 01 Feb 1977) and formally it was established by an act of Parliament on 18 Aug 1978.
A Special Cover was released on 01 Feb 1985 to mark Coast Guard day at Mumbai and a Special Cover was released in New Delhi on 01 Feb 2007 to celebrate 30th Anniversary of Coast Guard.
History of Aviation & Aerial ramming – World War II Heroes of USSR -Stamps on Russian Pilots -2014
Russia issued a Minisheet of four stamps on the theme of History of Aviation and aerial ramming. These stamps featured Pilots of World War II who were awarded Heroes of USSR medals. The Pilots were awarded Hero of Soviet Union award. This award was the highest distinction in the Soviet Union for historic feats in service to the Soviet state and society .It is no longer awarded now.
The Pilots are
Hero of USSR Lt E I Zelenko (1916-1941)
Hero of USSR Lt P E Eremeyev (1911-1941)
Hero of USSR Capt B I Kovzan (1922-1985)
Hero of USSR Guard Captain A S Khlobystov (1918-1943)
Centenary of End of World War I – Philatelic rundown of a deadly period.
A Killing in Sarajevo on 28 Jun 1914 led to a deadly War in Europe from 28 Jul 1914 to 11 Nov 1918. It led to mobilisation of 70 million military personnel and death of nine million combatants and seven million civilians.
The Allied Powers – France,Russia,Britain and USA vs Central Powers -Germany,Austria-Hungary and Ottoman Empire were pitched against each other in various battle grounds across Europe and elsewhere.
On 02 Aug 1914 , the 29th German Infantry Regiment stormed Luxembourg City.This was one of the Beginnings of World War I. Artist Pierre Blanc captured this storming in a pen drawing (now part of National Museum of History and Art in Luxembourg) which features on a stamp issued by Luxembourg on 23 Sep 2014 to remind us of the start of World War I.
Zeebrugge Raid – The Zeebrugge raid on 23 April 1918 was an attempt by Royal Navy to block the Belgian Port of Bruges-Zeebrugge. The British intended to sink obsolete ships in canal entrance to prevent German vessels including Submarines from leaving the port and interfere in Allied control of English Channel and North Sea. British Ships HMS Thetis, Intrepid and Iphigenia were used as block ships alongwith Submarines C1 and C3 and 4th Battalion of Royal marines. Submarine C3 commended by Lt R D Sanford was able to blow viaduct with an explosion and he was awarded Victoria Cross for this action. Allied promoted Zebrugge Raid as a Victory and eight Victoria Cross were awarded including a Victoria Cross for the entire 4th Battalion of Royal Marines.
British Forces Postal service a special cover on 23 Apr 1973 to mark 55th Anniversary of Zeebrugge Raid.
Victoria Cross awarded to Royal Naval Aviators for actions in World War I
Flight Lieutenant Reginald ‘Rex’ Warneford VC of Royal Navy was awarded Victoria Cross for his actions over Ghent ,Belgium on 07 jun 1918 by attacking and destroying German Zeppelin LZ37.
Squadron Commander Richard Bell Davies was awarded Victoria Cross for his heroic actions of saving his colleague Smylie at Ferrijik,Bulgaria in his single seater Nieuport on 19 Nov 1915.
Ascension Islands issued a set of stamps on these Victoria Cross awardees on 07 May 2009.
Indians in World War I
Indian Army Personnel were awarded 18 Victoria Crosses in World War I in various sectors.
France -Belgium sector (10 Victoria Cross)- including Three Victoria Crosses to 39 Garhwal Rifles
Mesopotamia Sector (06 Victoria Cross)
Palestine Sector (02 Victoria Cross).
Battle of Jerusalem 1917
General Allenby also mentions in his report that he and his staff with mission heads and military attaches of France,Italy and USA entered the city on foot and received at Jaffa gate by Guards representing England,Scotland,Ireland,Wales, Australia, New Zealand, India,France & Italy.
He received Christian,Jewish & Muslim Community Leaders to ensure sanctity and protection to all holy sites and even sent his Indian Muslim Soldiers to guard Islamic religious sites.
Israel issued a stamp on Centenary of this historic Battle 13 Jun 2017 . A First Day Cover is listed. The stamp shows the sergeants,Mayor of Jerusalm and General Allenby entering Jerusalem on Foot. The Cover also features the Allenby Memorial at Jerusalem.
The Indian Army commemorates September 23 every year as Haifa Day to pay its respects to the two brave Indian Cavalry Regiments Mysore Lancers and Jodhpur Lancers that helped liberate the city following a dashing cavalry action by the 15th Imperial Service Cavalry Brigade. In the autumn of 1918, the Indian Brigade was a part of the Allied Forces sweeping northwards through Palestine in what is seen as the last great cavalry campaign in history.
Israel issued a stamp on 06 Feb 2018 to commemorate the Centenary of Battle of Haifa with Indian Cavalry at Haifa.The Tab shows the Jodhpur Lancers insignia.
The First Day Cover Design Features the Memorial for fallen Indian Soldiers at Haifa.
Indian Air Force (IAF) celebrated its 86th Anniversary on 08 Oct 2018.
IAF was raised as an auxiliary Air Force of the Royal Air Force in British India.Some milestones in its 86 Year old history.
On 01 April 1933 the No 1 Squadron was commissioned with Five Indian Pilots andFour Westland Wapiti Biplanes . The squadron was led by British RAF Commanding officer Flight Lieutenant (laterAir Vice Marshal ) Cecil Bouchier.
During World War II it saw action in Burma & Thailand against Japanese and IAF Pilots took part in operations in Europe. It was conferred the Prefix “Royal” by King George VI for its service. This was later dropped after India became a Republic.
Operations Post Independence
1947, 1965,1971 & Kargil War with Pakistan
IPKF operations in Sri Lanka ,UN Missions in Congo, UN Peace Keeping Missions across Globe.
1962 War with China
Numerous relief operations across the Globe for Humanitarian Aid.
Recent relief operations during Kerala Floods.
Marshal of the Air Force – Arjan Singh DFC (15 Apr 1999 -16 Sep 2017). He was son of a Dafadar of Hudson’s Horse. Arjan Singh commanded No 1 Air Squadron as acting Squadron Leader in 1943 and later on in 1944 took part in Arakan Campaign where he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC).He became the First IAF officer to be promoted to the rank of Air Chief Marshal in 1966. He was Chief of Air Staff from 01 Aug 1964 to 15 July 1969. He was awarded the Padma Vibhusan in 1966.He was promoted to Five star Rank of Marshal of Indian Air Force equivalent to a Field Marshal on 26 Jan 2002.
Flying officer Nirmal Jit Singh Sekhon , PVC . ( 17 July 1943 – 14 Dec 1971)
He was commissioned into Indian Air Force on 04 jun 1967 as Pilot Officer. He was son of a MWO (Hony) Flight Lieutenant Tarlok Singh Sekhon. He was serving with 18 Squadron during 1971 War. He was bestowed the Nation’s highest wartime gallantry award Param Vir Chakra(Posthumous) for his heroic action for defence of Srinagar Airfield on 14 Dec 1971.
There are numerous stories of bravery and valour in the annals of IAF history. We pay a Philatelic Salute to the spirit of Air Warriors of IAF in service to the Nation. A few stamps issued on Indian Air Force are Listed.