Perinthalmanna: Stepping into Raman’s home is akin to entering the hangar of the Indian Air Force. One could find all the sleek fighter planes, along with some cargo aircraft, albeit in the miniature form, at the former IAF official’s home near here.
It’s his passion for aircraft that prompted Raman, 73, to make the models of the fighter jets that kept the country’s flag flying high in the hour of need. The mini planes are made of wood and iron, and the effort is also a bid to instill in the younger generation the spirit of flying.
After completing his basic education, Raman joined the maintenance wing of the IAF, and underwent training at Thambaram in Tamil Nadu.
Later, he worked in many fighter plane production centres in north India. “My interest in aircraft started after I successfully rectified a defect on the nose of a fighter plane using iron and aluminium,” said Raman.
His home, ‘Pinki Nilayam’, houses more than 55 models of aircraft which have been used during the Indo-Pak wars. The pick of the lot is the miniature of India’s pride fighter jet Gnat. The jet can vertically tilt to 90 degrees in air and fly at an altitude of 60,000 feet. The models of fighter jets such as MiG-21, Hunter and Canberra, which can carry eight bombs in its belly weighing close to 1,000 pounds, are also head-turners. Other modern aircraft such as Harvard and Supersonic, and cargo aircraft like Packet, Dakota, Caribou and Antonov-12 can also be found at Raman’s home.
Each aircraft model throws light on its history such as name of the plane, its uniqueness and the war in which the jet participated. His collection also boasts of some passenger aircraft.
Raman’s family consisting of wife Kamala, son Sajith Kumar, daughters Sindhu and Bindhu gives ample support to him.