Air Chief marshal
| I. Latif|
| 9 June 1923
Hyderabad State, British India (1923-06-09) |
British Raj (till 1947)
India (after 1947)
Indian Air Force
Indian Air Force
World War II
Indo-Pakistan War of 1947
Indo-Pakistan War of 1965
Indo-Pakistan War of 1971
World War II, Indo-Pakistani War of 1947
I. H. Latif Wikipedia
Air Chief Marshal Idris Hasan Latif (b.9 June 1923) was a chief of air staff of the Indian Air Force, having served as such from 1978 to 1981. After retirement, he has also served as the governor of the Indian state of Maharashtra (1982–85) and later as the Indian ambassador to France (till 1988). He was the first and only Indian Muslim to become the head of the Indian Air Force, or of any Indian armed force.
Latif was born in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh into a Sulaimani Bohra family in 1923. His father was Mr. Hasan Latif, chief engineer of the erstwhile Hyderabad State. He was educated at the prestigious Nizam College, Hyderabad, and is also a graduate of the Defence Services Staff College. Wellington, and the National Defence College.
Air Chief Marshal Latif was commissioned into the Royal Indian Air Force in 1942, and took part in the Burma Campaign on the Arakan Front during World War II. Later, he was a member of the Indian Advisory Group to Indonesia that helped the Indonesian Air Force induct jet fighters. Latif also served as Air Defence commander and Senior Air staff officer in Eastern Air Command. During 1961-65, Latif was the air attaché at the Indian embassy in Washington D.C. During the 1971 Indo-Pakistani war, he was Assistant Chief of Air Staff (plans). In 1971, he was awarded the Param Vishisht Seva Medal. In 1974, Latif was promoted to the rank of Air Marshal and posted as air officer in charge, administration, at Air Headquarters. He led Air Force relief operations during the Patna floods in 1975. In 1977, then Air Marshal Latif was posted as vice chief of air staff and took over as chief of air staff on 1 September 1978.
After retirement from active military service, Air Chief Marshal IH Latif was appointed as Governor of the Indian State of Maharashtra, on 6 March 1982, completing his tenure on 16 April 1985. Following this, Air Chief Marshal IH Latif was appointed Ambassador of India to France, a post he held until 1988. Then he was residing in Hyderabad.
He was married to Bilkees I. Latif, a noted social worker.