The amber sky dawned sagely over Air Force Academy, Hyderabad to witness the grand Combined Graduation Parade, which marked the momentous occasion of the passing out of 180 flight cadets including 21 women officers, to join the IAF, to carry forward the espoused legacy and the core values of ‘Mission, Integrity, Excellence’.
This solemn event was graced by the Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar, as the Reviewing Officer. He conferred the President’s Commission to the Flight Cadets who have successfully completed their basic and professional training at Air Force Academy, Air Force Station Hakimpet, Air Force Station Begumpet, Air Force Station Yelahanka and Air Force Administrative College (Coimbatore) on 18th June 2016.
He also awarded flying brevet to four Indian Navy officers and one Indian Coast Guard officer on their successful completion of training at the Academy.
On June 18, 2016, the Indian Air Force and three feisty women flight cadets created history during this Passing Out Parade as the first batch of Women Flight Cadets undergoing training being commissioned in the Fighter Stream of IAF Flying Branch.
Flight Cadets (From Left to Right) Bhawana Kanth of Bihar, Avani Chaturvedi of Madhya Pradesh and Mohana Singh of Rajasthan wrote their names in the IAF history when they passed out after the successful completion of training at the Combined Graduation Parade Spring Term – 2016.
Flight cadets of flying branch standing first in overall order of merit was awarded the President’s plaque and Sword of Honour and also had the privilege of commanding the parade contingent.
On a penultimate day, the 17th June, the reviewing officer attended a Ceremonial Guest Night with the flight cadets to be commissioned and their parents, wherein he awarded trophies to the flight cadets for excelling in their streams.
This training phase culminated in a grand ceremony with a scintillating Combined Graduation Parade on the tarmac facing the Sekhon Block at the Air Force Academy. The newly commissioned officer joined in their respective fields in Flying, Navigation and Ground duty branches after commissioning.
The graduating Flight Cadets will marched onto the tarmac with the impeccable turnout and impressive drill movements, demonstrating the conviction and commitment that they hold. Subsequently, a specially chosen group of Flight Cadets brought-in the ‘President’s Colours’ of the Academy.
The Reviewing Officer was accorded a salute by the parade followed by an impressive March Past. The Flight Cadets were awarded their stripes by the Reviewing Officer, the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Training Command and Commandant, Air Force Academy. They were then administered an oath by the Commandant of the Academy in the presence of the Chief Guest and other dignitaries. Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar gave away various awards to the flying officers who have excelled in training.
The parade culminated with the newly commissioned officers marching-out from behind the fort wall, in a slow march to the poignant notes of ‘Auld Lang Syne’ acknowledging the first salute given to them by their immediate juniors. It then followed with an awesome aerobatic display by the PC 7 MK II (the aircraft currently used in AFA to train pilots), the Sarang Helicopter display team and the mighty Su-30 MKI.
The Air Force Academy is the premier training establishment of IAF. It is veritably the ‘Cradle of Inspired Leadership’, as it undertakes the onerous task of transforming civilians to Air Warriors and creating an elite cadre of Officers.
See the images from the Passing Out Parade of the Air Force Academy here.