Service No : 33895 F(P)
Date of Birth : November 7, 1990
Place of birth : Chennai, Tamil Nadu
Last Rank : Flight Lieutenant
Arm/Regt : Indian Air Force
Martyrdom : June 3, 2019
Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty hailed from Baliapalli village under Kabisuryanagar block of Ganjam district of Odisha and was born on 7 Nov 1990 at a Military hospital in Chennai. His father Group Captain Surendranath Mohanty also served in the IAF and was a transport pilot having experience in flying various transport planes of the IAF. Flt Lt Sunit's love for the Air Force began from his childhood, inspired by his father. He grew passionate about flying while growing up and wished to serve the IAF like his father as a pilot. As his father got posted to various places he was schooled in various cities like Agra, Chandigarh, Coimbatore, Kota and Delhi. He later completed his B.Tech degree from NIT Jamshedpur.
But he was determined to join the IAF and decided to decline the job offer after graduating, to follow his dream. Eventually he got selected to join the IAF after clearing the Combined Defence Services Examination. He was was commissioned as a flying pilot in the IAF on 21 June 2014. He was trained as a transport pilot as part of the 193 Pilots' Course. He soon gained proficiency in flying various types of transport aircraft and was promoted to the rank of Flight Lieutenant on 21 June 2016.
AN-32 Crash (Indo-China Border): 3rd Jun 2019
During Jun 2019, Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty was serving with 43 Sqn AF based at Air Force station Jorhat in Assam. The Sqn was operating AN-32 twin-engine turboprop transport aircraft and was undertaking various air operations including the critical logistic support operations for the army troops deployed in far-flung and inaccessible areas of the Northeast. On 3rd Jun 2019, Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty along with his 7 other crew members was tasked for an air support operation. The other crew members of the aircraft included Wg Cdr Ganta Mahendra Charles, Sq Ldr H Vinod, Flt Lt Mohit Garg, Flt Lt Ashish Tanwar & Flt Lt Rajesh Thapa, Warrant Officer KK Mishra and Sergeant Anoop Kumar S. As per the assigned task, the aircraft was to take off from Jorhat IAF base and land at Mechuka Advanced Landing Ground in Arunachal Pradesh.
Flying in the area with a stretch of deep valleys and high mountains demanded a very high level of flying skills and Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty had the requisite experience and professional expertise to undertake various air operations in the area. As planned the aircraft with 8 crew members and 5 passengers took off from Jorhat at 12:27 pm and lost contact with ground control at 1 pm about 33 minutes after takeoff. The aircraft eventually crashed and the wreckage of the aircraft was found near Pari hills close to Gatte village, 16 km north of Lipo in Arunachal Pradesh, at an elevation of 12,000 feet. The wreckage was recovered 8 days after the crash following a massive rescue operation launched by the security forces. Besides the employment of the Indian Army, the Indo-Tibetan Border Police and the state police forces, IAF deployed a fleet of Sukhoi-30, C-130J, AN-32 aircraft, MI-17 and ALH helicopters for the rescue operation. Unfortunately, Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty and all other crew members could not survive the crash and were martyred. Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty was an accomplished transport pilot and a committed air warrior who laid down his life in the line of his duty.
Flt Lt Sunit Mohanty is survived by his father Gp Capt Surendranath Mohanty (Retd) and mother.