The two pilots, who were from the Ambala Air Force Base, had an argument with the local lawyer, Hari Das Tanwar, over parking. Tanwar had apparently parked his car while his wife was purchasing vegetables. The quarrel intensified when Tanwar allegedly tried to run them over.
The angry officers gave chase to Tanwar's car and stopped it near Kasauli. They had a fight during the course of which Tanwar stabbed Rao in his thigh, cutting his artery.
IANS reports that Rao's friend Sameer Yadav had also been stabbed.
Rao was taken to a hospital near Chandigarh, where he was declared brought dead.
Police arrested Tanwar from his home in Doon Valley and charged him with murder. Reports say that Tanwar confessed to his crime.
Police said that Tanwar was drunk when he attacked Rao, according to agencies.
Rao's body has been sent to his hometown Hissar, for funeral rites.
IANS quoted his parents as saying, “Had his life been sacrificed in combat, our suffering would have been much less."