On Saturday, 16th June, combined Passing Out Parade and Graduation was held at Air Force Academy, Dundigal, 40 kilometers from Hyderabad City. It was held on the occasion of successful completion of pre-commissioning training by the flight cadets of various branches of Indian Air Force.
Total 113 cadets, including 13 female cadets, have graduated and have been inducted into the Indian Air Force.
The Cadets beamed with pride, satisfaction and hope during the function. This day has come after a hectic and tiring training schedule. Cadets have invested their mind, body and soul in the training to be able to complete it and see this day. As usual it was a stringent training which tested cadets’ patience and endurance.
The parade and the functionwere reviewed by Air Chief Marshal Birender Singh Dhanoa. Addressing the crowd, he said “it is a matter of pride and honour to review the Combined Graduation Parade” and added “the cadets can become the fine men and women in the IAF as Military Aviation leaders”.
Keeping in view the changing geo-political and strategic environment and varied security challenges faced by India, he urged the young officers to remain in heightened state of preparedness by dynamically adapting to the continuously changing environment.
The IAF has continued to evolve over the years, playing more significant roles not only strengthening the defense of our country, but also carving a niche for itself amongst the best Air Force of the world, he said.
A total of 113 Flight Cadets including 13 women trainees were commissioned as Flying officers on the occasion.
It was a proud moment for 80 young pilots and six navigators as well who earned their coveted ‘Wings and Brevets’, along with six officers of Indian Navy and five officers of Indian Coast Guard on successful completion of their flying training.
This training is described as a ‘significant milestone’ in every military aviator’s career. The air chief reviewed the passing out parade and conferred the “President’s Commission” on behalf of the President of India, to the graduating trainees of various branches.
Air chief Dhanao presented the President’s Plaque and the ‘Sword of Honour’ to Tarun Nair, the flight cadet who stood first in the Order of Merit in ‘Flying Branch’. This flight cadet also got the privilege of commanding the Graduation Parade. The Reviewing Officer also awarded the President’s Plaque to Officers Abhishek Bajpai and Banti, the toppers – first in overall merit – in the Navigation branch and Ground Duty branches of the graduating course.
The ceremony also marked the commissioning of another woman fighter pilot in the IAF, namely Flying Officer Meghana Shanbough. She will be joining the existing five woman fighter pilots of the IAF.
At a program on the eve of the graduation,
The Reviewing Officer also attended the Ceremonial Guest Night and interacted with graduating trainees and their parents. During this event, he awarded trophies to the flight cadets who have excelled in their respective streams.
The Pre-Commissioning training at Air Force Academy, for various branches such as Flying, Navigation, Administration, Logistics, Accounts, Education and Meteorology commences in January and July every year, and culminates with the ‘Combined Graduation Parade’ after nearly 12 months of rigorous training in December and June respectively.
“It is at AFA, the raw civilians are transformed into capable and efficient leaders to safeguard the aerospace of the Nation and shoulder the responsibility in their respective spheres of operations of the IAF,” a defence statement said.
On Commissioning, the flight cadets are awarded with the rank of ‘Flying Officer’ in the IAF.