1971 Gallantry Awards

1971 Gallantry Awards

By inflicting heavy losses on the IAF, the PAF saved Pakistan from the deeper and more sinister motives of the enemy.In both the wars, the gallant air warriors served as a deterrent to the enemy designs, against heavy odds. Their mettle was tested and they always came out with flying colours. PAF personnel are always regarded as the fine breed of brave men who have vowed to keep the pure skies of Pakistan clear from predatory forces.

Air Marshal

A Rahim Khan - Hilal-i-Juraat

Group Captain

Inam H Khan - Hilal-i-Juraat

Wing Commander

Hakimullah - Sitara-i-Juraat

Wing Commander Hakimullah was commanding a fighter bomber squadron during the Indo-Pakistan War, 1971. He led five strike missions against heavily defended enemy airfields. Every mission, led by him, including the first strike against Amritsar, was flown with tremendous courage and exceptional professional skill. He flew with nerve and cool composure, which was a source of inspiration to his team in particular and everyone else connected with operational activity in general. During some of these strikes his formation was intercepted by enemy fighters over Indian airfields. Wing Commander Hakimullah lived upto the highest traditions of leadership during these critical moments and accomplished the primary mission. Throughout the war, his unit inspired by him, flew boldly and without any losses in aircraft or pilot. For his gallant and professional performance, He has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

M. Afzal Choudhry - Sitara-i-Juraat

Mahmood Akhtar - Sitara-i-Basalat

Wing Commander Mahmood Akhtar was commanding a B-57 detachment during the war. From the onset of operations his performance was a source of inspiration to all. His personal example and courage under dangerous and trying conditions were never in doubt. Wing Commander Akhtar always went out of his way to fly the most difficult missions and proved time and again that there is no substitute for professionalism and determination. His example, Cheerful attitude and high moral kept the force together even under the most difficult conditions. He has time and again thrown personal safety aside and has launched missions during enemy raids at the Base , when he could easily have aborted them . For his courage , leadership and excellent administration he has been awarded Bar to Sitara-i-Basalat.

Syed Nisar Yunus - Sitara-i-Basalat

Wing Commander Syed Nasir Yunus was in Dhaka at the time the Army started operation in East Pakistan. He flew many hazardous transport missions for the initial deployment of the army to various places. This included recapture of some of the rebel-held airfields. Many a time, he received anonymous telephone calls to suspend C-130 operations, otherwise he and his crew would be killed. Undeterred by these threats he flew six to eight missions a day. He also flew reccee missions to spot and locate enemy ships that were deployed in the Bay of Bengal. On one mission he was able to locate an element of three enemy ships, which turned to fire on his aircraft, but he was able to evade successfully. During December 1971, Wing Commander Yunus guided and conducted the operations of his squadron most ably. His devotion to duty has been a source of inspiration to all, Wing Commander Yunus has displayed conspicuous courage, determination and has made outstanding contribution to the over-all achievement of the P.A.F. In recognition of his services, Wing Commander Syed Nasir Yunus has been awarded Sitara-i-Basalat.

Squadron Leader

Abdul Basit - Sitara-i-Juraat

Squadron Leader Abdul Basit was detailed on an air mission against the I.A.F. Base at Halwara on the night of 10/11th December, 1971. He flew the mission as planned. While a few minutes short of the target four surface-to-air missiles were fired at his B-57 aircraft. He displayed great courage, skill and devotion to duty, evaded these missiles, continued on his mission and successfully attacked the target even though there was all the likelihood of the enemy firing more SAM's. For his courage, determination and devotion to duty Squadron Leader Abdul Basit has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Farooq Omer - Sitara-i-Juraat

Squadron Leader Farooq Omer was employed on day and night air defence and reconnaissance duties during the Indo-Pakistan war of 1971. He flew reconnaissance mission against heavily defended enemy airfields and forward army positions. He always flew with immense courage and determination. On one of the reccee missions, because of a bird hit his aircraft sustained engine damage but he resolutely continued his mission and successfully completed it against a heavily defended enemy airfield. On an air defence mission, Squadron Leader Farooq Omer successfully intercepted an enemy formation of Hunter aircraft and shotdown / damaged four of them. The immense courage and determination displayed by Squadron Leader Farooq Omer during the war was always a source of inspiration to other pilots of squadron. He has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Ghulam Ahmed Khan - Sitara-i-Juraat

Squadron Leader Ghulam Ahmed Khan was detailed along with Squadron Leader A. Basit on a counter air mission against the I.A.F. Base at Halwara on the night of 10/11th December, 1971. He flew the mission as planned. While a few minutes short of the target 4 SAMs were fired at his B-57 aircraft. He displayed great courage, skill and devotion to duty, assisted his pilot in evading these missiles, continuing the mission and successfully attacking the target even though there was all the likelihood of the enemy firing more SAMs. For his courage, determination and devotion to duty Squadron Leader Ghulam Ahmed Khan has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Hassan Akhtar - Sitara-i-Basalat

Javed Afzal Ahmed - Sitara-i-Juraat

On 4th December, 1971 while flying on an air defence mission, Squadron Leader Javed Afzal Ahmed intercepted a formation of four Hunters approaching Dhaka airfield. During the combat he shot down two Hunters and chased away the others, thus preventing them from attacking any target. In the same mission, he engaged a formation of two SU-7 aircraft's which were attacking a Pakistan Army helicopter and chased them away. Throughout the war he fought valiantly. For his courage and excellent performance in the face of heavy odds, Squadron Leader Afzal has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Maqsood Ahmed - Sitara-i-Basalat
M. R. Akhtar - Sitara-i-Basalat

Nazir Ahmed Khan - Sitara-i-Basalat

Squadron Leader Nazir Ahmed Khan, S.J., has consistently displayed outstanding courage, determination and devotion to duty both during peace and war. Squadron Leader Nazir was among the first crews to participate in the operations in East Pakistan. This involved flying long and tiring hours in adverse weather and hostile environment. He displayed the highest degree of devotion , courage and determination and flew extensively to deploy Army elements for recapture of rebel-held areas . Determined to carry out the task, he flew without any regard for personal comfort. While operating from Jessore his aircraft was hit by ground fire from the rebels surrounding the air field. Undeterred by the prevailing danger he flew on similar missions for re-capture and support of Lalmunir Hat, Ishurdi and other places. His fortitude and courage proved a great source of inspiration to others. During the December war he displayed exceptional courage, determination and devotion to duty. Squadron Leader Nazir Ahmed Khan has been awarded Sitara-i-Basalat.

Flight Lieutenant

Abdul Karim Bhatti - Tamgha-i-Juraat

On 7th December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Abdul Karim Bhatti sighted two Hunters during a close support mission. On leader's instructions he engaged one of the Hunters, pursued it for about 15 miles over enemy territory and finally shot it down. In the process he lost contact with his leader. Flight Lieutenant Bhatti, alone and without any cover, pursued the attack, disregarding his personal safety and achieved a kill. For his devotion to duty and courageous performance, he has been awarded Tamgha-i-Juraat.

Abdul Wajid Saleem - Sitara-i-Juraat

Flight Lieutenant Abdul Wajid Saleem was the navigator of an aircraft detailed on a mission against an P.A.F. base on the night of 6/7th December, 1971. He planned the mission with great care. During the flight, Flight Lieutenant Abdul Wajid displayed a high degree of professionalism and courage which were a source of inspiration to all other crew members. As the aircraft approached the target it encountered heavy anti-aircraft fire. His accurate tactical navigation ensured a successful mission against heavy odds. In recognition of his devotion to duty and courage, Flight Lieutenant Abdul Wajid Saleem has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Israr Ahmed - Sitara-i-Juraat

On 4th December, 1971, Flight Lieutenant Israr Ahmad was detailed to fly a mission over the Chamb-Akhnur sector. While over the battle area, his aircraft was hit by enemy ground fire and the pilot was seriously injured. In spite of his injuries, the pilot climbed to height, flew the aircraft and landed at a base during an air raid warning. When he was removed from the cockpit it was found that his right upper arm bone was shattered and he was suffering from serious loss of blood. Flight Lieutenant Israr showed tremendous courage and determination in flying the aircraft back and landing at his base with his left arm in spite of his injuries. In doing this, he displayed sterling qualities of devotion to duty and courage and determination. In recognition of his performance, he has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Javed Ahmed - Sitara-i-Juraat

Flight lieutenant Javed Ahmed flew a total of 12 operational missions during the war. He conducted all the missions with courage, skill and in complete disregard of his personal safety.

On 4th December, 1971 Flight Lieutenant Javed was detailed to fly as No.2 on an air defence mission. As he was scrambled for take-off, the airfield was subjected to a surprise attack by two enemy Hunter aircraft. Flight Lieutenant Javed was about to take off when the enemy aircraft spotted the aircraft on the runway and commenced a straffing attack forcing the leader to abort. With total disregard to his personal safety this pilot continued his take-off with the enemy bullets landing just to the left of his aircraft. After successfully getting airborne, Flight Lieutenant Javed intercepted the raiders and shot down one of the Hunters.

In continuing his take-off in the face of grave danger to his life and subsequently shooting down the enemy aircraft Flight Lieutenant Javed has lived upto the true traditions of the P.A.F. For his display of the highest standard of initiatives, courage and professional skill beyond the call of duty, Flight Lieutenant Javed Ahmed has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Javed Latif - Tamgha-i-Juraat

During the war, Flight Lieutenant Javed Latif flew twenty operational missions in Air Defence role and displayed professional excellence, cool courage and aggressive spirit of a very high order. Throughout the war, he remained undeterred by hazards posed to his personal safety and undertook tasks assigned to him even though their execution was fraught with many risks. On 4th December, 1971 at 0920 hours he was ordered to scramble for combat air patrol. When he was still in the process of starting up his aircraft, the airfield was attacked by two enemy SU-7s. His aircraft pen received a direct rocket hit but luckily no damage was caused to his aircraft. Under the circumstances he was fully justified to abandon his aircraft and take cover but he decided to continue his mission and successfully destroyed one enemy SU-7 aircraft which attacked the airfield ten minutes later. For his professional excellence, cool courage and a high degree of aggressive spirit when in contact with the enemy, Flight Lieutenant Javed Latif has been awarded Tamgha-i-Juraat.

Maqsood Amir - Tamgha-i-Juraat

Flight Lieutenant Maqsood Amir was detailed to carry out a close support mission in an F-86 aircraft on 17th December, 1971. During the mission his formation was engaged by four MIG-21s. Although the F-86 was in a vulnerable position, Flight Lieutenant Maqsood took aggressive evasive action and swiftly maneuvered to gain offensive on the enemy. In the ensuing combat, he handled his aircraft against a much superior adversary in a professional and skilful manner and shot down one of the MIG-21s. The sequence of shooting recorded by his aircraft camera film reflects a very high professional standard. For his courage and high professional skill, he has been awarded Tamgha-i-Juraat.

Mir Alam Khan - Sitara-i-Juraat

Flight Lieutenant Mir Alam Khan was detailed on a mission against an I.A.F. base on 6th December, 1971. At the time of his take-off, the airfield came under enemy raid. Undaunted by the danger, he took off during the raid and proceeded on his mission. Despite heavy anti-aircraft fire he successfully completed his mission. During this mission, his aircraft also received a hit from anti-aircraft fire. However, he successfully exited leaving behind his target in flames. The fire was also seen by another friendly aircraft flying thirty miles away. Flight Lieutenant Mir Alam Khan's action in the execution of his mission bears testimony to his undaunted courage and devotion to duty in keeping with the highest traditions of the service. He has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Taloot Mirza - Tamgha-i-Juraat

Flight Lieutenant Taloot Mirza flew a total of fifteen operational missions and was engaged in aerial combat thrice. He demonstrated a high degree of cool courage in both ground attack and aerial combat. On 10th December, 1971,when on a close support mission, his formation of two aircrafts was engaged by six enemy SU-7 aircrafts. Flight Lieutenant Taloot accepted the challenge coolly and successfully destroyed one SU-7 in the face of heavy odds. For his courage and dedication to service he has been awarded Tamgha-i-Juraat.

Flying Officer

Mohammad Shamsul Haq - Sitara-i-Juraat

During the war Flying Officer Mohammad Shamsul Haq, being the youngest member of the squadron with the least experience of flying, acquitted himself with exemplary courage and skill. On 4th December, 1971 he was ordered to scramble and intercept a formation of four SU-7 aircraft's attacking Dhaka airfield. As he got airborne, the SU-7s attacked his formation with missiles. He very coolly broke into the attacking aircraft at very low speed and asked his wingman to do the same and in the ensuing battle shot down on SU-7. Meanwhile four Hunters joined the battle. He engaged these Hunters and shot down two of them. There-after he was attacked by 4 MIG-21's. He put off their attack by quick planning and superior handling of aircraft. Against such heavy odds he displayed exemplary courage and leadership. Flying Officer Shamsul Haq has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Riffat Jamil - Sitara-i-Juraat

Flying Officer Riffat Jamil flew as a co-pilot on a bombing mission to Jaisalmir on 6th December, 1971. He made a significant contribution to the success of the mission as result of which the enemy suffered heavy losses. In recognition of his courage and determination, he has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat

Syed Shamshad Ahmed - Sitara-i-Juraat

On 4th December, 1971 Flying Officer Syed Shamshad Ahmed was scrambled to intercept a formation of four SU-7s attacking Dhaka airfield. As he got airborne he was attacked by the SU-7s with missiles. He put off their attack by superior handling of his aircraft. In the same mission he intercepted a formation of four Hunters. In the subsequent air battle he shot down one Hunter. On another mission he spotted one Hunter attacking our troop positions. Fearlessly he engaged that aircraft and shot it down. Though very young and having very little experience of fighter flying he kept his spirits high and displayed great courage throughout the war. For his courage, skill and performance, Flying Officer Syed Shamshad Ahmed has been awarded Sitara-i-Juraat.

Warrant Officer

Abdul Haq - Tamgha-i-Juraat

Senior Technician

Asghar Ali - Tamgha-i-Juraat
Sajjad Shah - Tamgha-i-Juraat

Flight Seargent

Abdul Majid - Tamgha-i-Basalat
Abdul Rashid - Tamgha-i-Basalat
Amir-ud-din - Tamgha-i-Basalat

Corporal

Afzal Abbasi - Tamgha-i-Juraat
Muhammad Ghazanfar - Tamgha-i-Juraat

Junior Technician

Muhammad Latif
Tamgha-i-Juraat

During an enemy air raid, realizing that the pilots strapped in air defence alert aircraft were exposed to grave danger, Junior Technician Muhammad Latif disregarded his personal safety, ran up to each aircraft and helped the pilots to unstrap and take cover. In this process he was fatally wounded by enemy fire and died soon after. For his outstanding courage and devotion to duty, he was awarded the Tamgha-i-Juraat.