Risalpur - “Pakistan Air Force has on its inventory state-of-the-art equipment and is well-equipped to defend its aerial frontiers,” said the Air Chief, while addressing the graduation ceremony at PAF Academy Risalpur on Wednesday.

Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force, was the chief guest at the graduation parade of 132 GD (P), 77 Engineering Course, 91 Air Defence Course and Commissioning Parade of 135 GD (P), 81 Engineering Course, 16 A&SD course and 03 Navigation Course.

While addressing the graduating parade, the Air Chief said, “With Air power fast becoming the future weapon of choice, you must acquire the ability to be able to accept this role with all its manifestations. Hundred percent commitments would be the minimum requirement for continuous progress of the Pakistan Air Force as a modern Force of the 21st Century. Make a note that, perseverance, diligence and unwavering determination would be name of the game. I therefore, want you to keep in mind what the Quaid said while addressing the PAF personnel at Malir on 21st February, 1948: “You will have to be alert, very alert, for the time for relaxation is not yet there. With faith, discipline and selfless devotion to duty, there is nothing worthwhile that you cannot achieve.”

The air chief further said, “History of PAF amply manifests that the valiant airmen have never shied away from any level of sacrifices for the country’s defence. Today, Pakistan Air Force is not only defending the aerial frontiers of Pakistan against any external threats, but is also in the lead role in meting out a telling blow on the anti-state elements during the Operation Zarb-e-Azb. Likewise, with the unflinching spirit of serving the nation, PAF has always been a part and parcel of all national efforts in mitigating the sufferings of our people, whether these were the relief or rescue efforts in earthquakes and floods or supporting our internally displaced brethren.”

A total of 102 under training officers and 13 cadets were graduated whereas 111 cadets were commissioned on the occasion. The chief guest awarded branch insignias to the graduating officers and aviation cadets and also gave away trophies among the distinction holders. The chief guest awarded Quaid-e-Azam Banner to No 3 Squadron, the Champion Squadron of the Academy.

Pilot Officer Muhammad Sameed Ahsan of No 132 GD (P) course and Pilot Officer Ali Rashid of 77 Engineering course were awarded with the trophies for Best Performance in General Service Training.

Chief of the Air Staff’s Trophy for best performance in Flying Training and Engineering discipline were awarded to Pilot Officer Danial Abid and Pilot Officer Ali Hanif respectively. Trophy for the best performance in 91st Air Defence course was awarded to Aviation Cadet (Sgt) Asim Muhammad. Sword of Honour for Overall Best Performance in College of Flying Training was won by       Pilot Officer Haris Salahuddin of 132 GD (P) course. Whereas, Pilot Officer Rana Sufyan of 77 Engineering course received the Sword of Honour for Overall Best Performance in College of Aeronautical Engineering.

The ceremony was followed by an exhilarating aerial display by the PAF Academy Aerobatics team ‘Sherdils’. Earlier, on his arrival at the Academy, Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt, Chief of the Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force was received by Air Vice Marshal Aasim Zaheer, Air Officer Commanding PAF Academy, Risalpur.  The ceremony was witnessed by high-ranking Military & Civil Officials, Diplomats, foreign dignitaries and a large number of guests of graduating/commissioning Under Training Officers and Aviation Cadets.