Address by CAS Combined Graduation Parade Air Force Academy: December 18, 2021

December 18, 2021
  • Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief, Training Command, Commandant, Air Force Academy, Faculty Staff, Newly Commissioned Officers, proud parents and families, Trainee officers, esteemed veterans, distinguished guests, members of the media, ladies and Gentlemen.
  • It is indeed an honour and privilege for me to be here and review the Combined Graduation Parade of 208th Pilot and Ground duty Course and 133rd Nav Course along with two Officers from the Indian Navy, Nine Officers from the Indian Coast Guard and Three cadets from Vietnam, who have received their Wings today.
  • I would like to express my heartfelt grief and sorrow on the untimely demise of Gen Bipin Rawat, Mrs Madhulika Rawat and twelve armed forces’ personnel on board the ill-fated helicopter on 08 December. We have chosen to cut down many events that would otherwise have been part of this graduation parade as a mark of respect to the departed souls.
  • At the outset, I would like to convey my heartiest congratulations to all Graduating Officers for the immaculate turn out, precise drill movements, and an excellent parade. I am sure that today, you would be filled with immense satisfaction, pride and excitement as you march through the hallowed portals of Sekhon Block to become commissioned officers of one of the finest Air Forces in the world.
  • I congratulate you for your individual and collective achievements and my felicitations to all the award winners for displaying exceptional professional commitment and hard work all through your training period.
  • I acknowledge and appreciate the efforts put in by each one you in this academy to reach this significant milestone of your life. I would like to convey my deepest gratitude to all parents and family members who have nurtured and raised you to take on a career in the Indian Air Force.
  • You have undergone an extensive curriculum as part of a rigorous training schedule, designed to prepare you for leadership roles in the profession that you have chosen. Your successful passing out is a direct reflection of the skills you have developed and demonstrated while acquiring knowledge. I commend the efforts of all officers and airmen who have guided, mentored and taught you not just the basics of your profession but also imbibed in you the ethos of IAF which is, ‘Mission, Integrity and Excellence’.
  • Remember, that the same dedication, adaptability and willingness to continually push yourselves will be required from you time and again in the future. The same high standards that you have shown today will form the basis of safe and effective operations in the future, no matter what your role.
  • Although, your formal training has been successfully completed, do remember, that the learning process has only just begun and you would be required to continue to work hard and take on additional responsibilities as Officers in the IAF.
  • You must remember that the sacred oath you took, bearing allegiance to the Constitution of India, is a commitment for life. You must work ‘honestly and faithfully’ with utmost dedication and integrity throughout your career.
  • As you move from AFA to your units in the field, you will operate expensive and sophisticated equipment, for which you will have to gain expertise and mastery. The nature of warfare is undergoing fundamental changes. New technology and radically newer doctrines have emerged in the last few years. India’s security dynamics involves multi- faceted threats and challenges. It would require us to build multi-domain capabilities and execute all our operations simultaneously and in shortened timeframes. The Air Force has big expectations from you as you will be the leaders who will steer the IAF and this country into the future.
  • The IAF is on the cusp of transformation into a highly potent Air Force with new inductions like Rafale, Apache, Chinook and a wide variety of SAGW systems. Today, as you graduate and move into an environment that is challenging and technology intensive, the IAF looks upon young and dynamic officers like you to carry forward the rich legacy of professional attitude, aptitude and temperament shown by your predecessors.
  • To be a good officer, you must have an overall appreciation of the nuances of all branches of IAF. Therefore, the ability to understand working of all branches - Be it flying, technical, logistics, accounts or administration, will complement your basic professional knowledge and help you in becoming a “Thorough Professional”.
  • As officers, you must develop an understanding of this complex and dynamic world through the study of military history, geo-politics and international affairs. This can be possible only if you inculcate good reading habits, in the early years of your service career. The IAF will give you ample opportunities to perform, excel and nurture your professional competence, if you have the will and the fortitude.
  • As a military officer you are bound to face certain hardships in your career. Never allow these hardships and constraints to affect you mentally and physically. There is an old adage, “when the going gets tough, the tough get going”- this should be the motto of your career and you should remain physically, emotionally and mentally fit to meet and accept any challenge in life.
  • What does the IAF expect from you as Officers and commanders? We expect exceptional professionalism and unquestioned integrity. We expect you to maintain the highest standards of personal conduct and moral values that would reflect the dignity and pride of being in the profession of arms. We expect you to be fair, consistent and selfless while at work, to have compassion and understanding, to have the courage and of course to live up to the values that have been ingrained in you during your training period.
  • Today is a joyous moment for you and your family members. Also, it is a day when your ambitions and ideas will take wings and form an integral part of your journey in the IAF. You must always live up to the trust and faith this organization has placed on your shoulders. “Carry this responsibility with pride”.
  • As I congratulate you, I also pray that the qualities which have carried you through the rigorous regime of AFA, will further develop and mature during your career. I am confident that the training that you have received under an able and competent faculty will not fail you in the most difficult situations. I am also certain that you will carry ahead the rich legacy of great resolve, exceptional professionalism and timeless traditions, into a world of infinite possibilities.
  • Once again, I would like to wish you all the very best for your career in the Indian Air Force and May you all, “Touch the sky with glory”.

Jai Hind!