When the war began, Indra Lal Roy was attending St. Paul's school in Kensington, London. In July 1917, he joined the Royal Flying Corps and was posted to 56 Squadron on 30 October 1917. A member of "A" Flight under Richard Maybery, Roy crashed his S.E.5a (B567) on the morning of 6 December and was injured. When he recovered, he was sent back to England for remedial training. Despite concerns that he was medically unfit to fly, he was reassigned to 40 Squadron under George McElroy on 19 June 1918. Upon his return to the front, the nineteen year old was credited with ten victories in just over 170 hours of flight time. On the morning of 22 July 1918, three days after scoring his final victory, the only Indian ace of the war was killed in action when his plane went down in flames over Carvin during a dogfight with the Fokker D.VIIs of Jasta 29.
Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC)
Lieut. Indra Lal Roy.
A very gallant and determined officer, who in thirteen days accounted for nine enemy machines. In these several engagements he has displayed remarkable skill and daring, on more than one occasion accounting for two machines in one patrol.
Supplement to the London Gazette, 21 September 1918 (30913/11254)