All about Colonel Gill who served in the Army, Navy and Indian Air Force
New Delhi, Jan 15: Colonel Prithpal Singh Gill has seen it all. The World War II, India-Pakistan war of 1965, the retired Colonel who saw it all, turned 100 on December 11, 2020. More importantly he is the only surviving officer to have served the Army, Navy and Indian Air Force.
Today on Army Day, he was awarded the Silver Salver on behalf of the Chief of Defence Staff, General Bipin Rawat.
He joined the Royal Indian Air Force as a pilot without his family's consent in 1942. Following this he joined the Navy where he served on a mine sweeping ship, INS Teer, which was an escort for cargo ships during the World War 2. He then left the Navy after completing the Longe Range Gunnery Course.
Colonel Gill join the Indian Army soon after Independence and sought a placement in the 1Sikh in which many members of his family including his father had served. Due to his gunnery experience, he was allowed the Regiment of Artillery and was posted with the Gwalior Mountain Battery equipped with 5.4-inch guns.
He was the commanding officer of the Regiment during the 1965 Indo-Pak war and fought in the Sialkot sector. On promotion to the rank of Colonel, he went on to command an Assam Rifle Sector in Manipur.
He retired in 1970.
"Congratulate Col Prithipal Singh Gill, who turns 100 today. He bears the unique distinction of having served in all three armed forces. Sir, Wish you many more years of good health and may you continue to always inspire all of us," Punjab Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh had said in a tweet.