ISLAMABAD 29 DECEMBER, 2014: – A ceremony to launch two PAF books namely “History of Pakistan Air Force (1999-2013)” and “Sentinels in the Sky” was held at Air Headquarters, today. Air Chief Marshal Tahir Rafique Butt, Chief of Air Staff, Pakistan Air Force was the chief guest at the occasion. Former air chiefs, a large number of PAF serving/retired officers, families of Shuhada and war veterans attended the ceremony.
While addressing at the occasion, Air Chief said, “While keeping pace with the demands of a compelling future, we can never be oblivious to what our predecessors achieved in the past. The extraordinary sacrifices rendered by our great heroes, while guarding the aerial frontiers of our beloved motherland, will always remain a source of inspiration for all of us. Ever since the birth of the PAF, our evolving annals have chronicled many an occasion when we were put to the test, but manfully rose to each challenge. The nation salutes its valiant sons who either attained the lofty station of Shahadat, or returned home with pride as Ghazi. For us they are all heroes who deserve our enduring gratitude and respect”.
The Air Chief further said, “In our rich history the past fifteen years merit special significance as the era entailed the need for replacing our aging arsenal and aligning ourselves along the contours of the future air power employment across the entire range of conflict, i.e from sub-conventional to the strategic. Ably led by my predecessors, the PAF met each challenge and has transformed itself into a modern air force of 21st century. Throughout this era, the air force gained strength from a process of continuity when each successive leadership built on the achievement of its predecessor. We take pride that it was in this timeframe that the PAF also earned the distinction of being the first air force to co-produce its own combat aircraft”.
While speaking at the occasion, the war veterans and families of Shuhada highly appreciated the humble endeavor made by PAF in recognizing their sacrifices made for the country. They thanked the Air Chief for arranging such a memorable event in their honour, which would go a long way in their lives.
History of Pakistan Air Force: “Entering the new century” is the fourth volume in the sequel of PAF history books which encapsulates the official account of PAF from 1999-2013. The official history of PAF till 1998 has already been documented in previous three volumes. The Book is written by Air Cdre Qadeer Hashmi (Retd) who has also served as Director Media Affairs at Air Headquarters. As a writer the officer has already co-authored a famous book “The Aviation City”, the history of Pakistan Aeronautical Complex Kamra.
“Sentinels in the Sky” summarizes the heroic deeds of PAF’s Ghazis and Shuhada who were awarded with gallantry awards for displaying extraordinary valour during Indo-Pak wars of 1965 and 1971. The book is co-authored by Colonel Azam Qadri (Retd) and Group Captain Muhammad Ali.
Colonel Azam (Retd) had a distinguished career of over twenty five years in Pak Army. As a writer the officer has authored “What more can a soldier desire”, a famous book on Major Shabbir (Shaheed), NH. Co-author Group Captain Muhammad Ali is a serving officer of PAF and has more than 25 years of commissioned service. In his previous literary endeavors, he has contributed a large number of articles for the various national and international magazines and newspapers.
At the end of the ceremony, the worthy chief guest presented the books to former Air Chiefs, present at the occasion.