IAF honours Sachin Tendulkar

Written by: Samyuktha
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New Delhi, Sep 3: The Indian Air Force (IAF) on Friday, Sep 3 gave wings to cricketer Sachin Tendulkar by conferring him with an honorary rank of Group Captain.

IAF Air Chief Marshal PV Naik did the honours at a ceremony in the national capital, under the provision of granting honorary rank by armed forces to eminent personalities acknowledging their contribution towards the nation.

Ahead of the facilitation, the ace batsman had to go through a process of familiarisation with the IAF and training in basic military practices.

With this Tendulkar has become the first sports person to ever be conferred a rank by IAF and the first personality with no aviation background to get this honour.

The master blaster has also been named the brand ambassador for the force as IAF feels that Tendulkar would motivate youngsters to join the force.

A total of 21 eminent personalities have been granted honorary ranks by the IAF so far. Industrialist JRD Tata was made an honorary Air Vice Marshal in 1974.

Industrialist-cum-aviator Vijaypat Singhania, who was awarded in 1990 became the last one to receive such an honour. He is now an honorary Air Commodore.

Even though Tendulkar is the first athlete to have been awarded by IAF, in 2008, India's World Cup winning captain, Kapil Dev had received the honorary rank of Lieutenant Colonel of the Territorial Army.

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