Pilot relives his war experiences in new book
PUBLISHED: 15:37 24 February 2010 | UPDATED: 11:31 23 August 2010
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A VETERAN RAF pilot is set to release a book about his experiences fighting in World War II. Squadron leader Mahinder Singh Pujji, 91, has written a book called For King and Country and will be published later this year. Mr Pujji enjoyed a highly succes
A VETERAN RAF pilot is set to release a book about his experiences fighting in World War II.
Squadron leader Mahinder Singh Pujji, 91, has written a book called For King and Country and will be published later this year.
Mr Pujji enjoyed a highly successful military career, arriving as one of the 24 Indian pilots who came to defend Britain's skies.
He said: "Coming to England I didn't know much about the war. London was being bombed day and night, it was terrible. I knew I was fighting a just cause and I knew why I was fighting Hitler.
Growing up in an affluent Indian family, he had gained his pilot's license before the war, but was drawn to a newspaper advert to join the conflict in Europe.
He added: "I joined because I wanted an adventure."
During his career Mr Pujji met world leaders such as Winston Churchill, Gadhi, King Farouk of Egypt and the Queen.
A Sikh, Pujji was the only pilot in the RAF to be allowed to wear a turban, to which he attached RAF wings.
Flying missions in North Africa as well as during the battle of Britain, the father of three's greatest achievement was a rescue of 300 American troops surrounded in Burma. This feat earned him the Distinguished Flying Cross.
"I was called in to find them after the American air force had failed. It was a great honour to receive the award."
He went on to fly 25 different types of aircrafts, including the Hurricane he used in Burma
After the war he flew commercial planes with Air India before retiring to Britain in 1974, and he now lives in sheltered accommodation in The Grove.
His book also contains details of death defying feats in missions over the Mediterranean.