On October 10, 2020 passing out parade was held at Pakistan Military Academy (PMA) Kakul, Abbottabad. Passed out cadets were of 142nd PMA Long Course, 32nd Technical Graduate Course, 61st Integrated Course, 16th Lady Cadet Course and 1st Basic Military Training Course.
Cadets from Palestine, Maldives, Qatar and Sri Lanka were also among the passed out courses. Chief of the Army Staff (COAS), General Qamar Javed Bajwa was the chief guest on the occasion. COAS reviewed the parade and gave awards to distinguished cadets. The coveted Sword of Honour was awarded to Academy Senior Under Officer Muhammad Faateh of 142nd PMA Long Course. The President’s Gold Medal was awarded to Battalion Senior Under Officer Junaid Khan of 142nd PMA Long Course, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee Overseas Gold Medal to Under Officer Naazim Naseer of 142nd PMA Long Course from Maldives, Chief of Army Staff Cane to Company Junior Under Officer Tanawosh of 32nd Technical Graduate Course and Commandant Cane was awarded to Sergeant Hamza Tariq of 61st Integrated Course, Company Sergeant Major Ada Urooj of 16th Lady Cadet Course and Company Under Officer Mehwish Anjum of 1st Basic Military Training Course.
We Are Now Subjected to a 24/7 Hybrid War: COAS
Excerpts from COAS’ Speech
• Today is the start of your careers in one of the most distinguished and battle-hardened armies of the world. The army which not only defeated the scourge of terrorism but also gave a bloody nose to a five times bigger army in February 2019.
• Pakistan Army is a true reflection of the proud nation that you represent. From the all volunteer induction, to the ratio of each province represented in your rank and file; from madrassa to public school background; from the son of a humble worker to the son of an affluent person and, even more importantly, the ward of a Shaheed; you are a true microcosm of Pakistan.
• It is a great honour that we stand before the nation as a trusted and accountable institution. Therefore, regardless of our failings and triumphs, we stand to give our best, whenever we are called upon to do so.
• Pakistan is a developing country but our people have big hearts. They will always respect and honour you, even in your time of test and trial. You have to maintain their sacred trust with unflinching commitment and total loyalty.
• This relationship has been sealed and secured with countless night vigils, toil and hardships and, above all, the sweat of our Ghazis and the blood of our Shuhada. It’s now your duty to honour and protect it.
• You must strive to remain disciplined, dutiful and above board. You will be required to live your youthful years in frugality and hardship. Consider it as a challenge and not as a punishment. Ours is the path less travelled. In this path you first commit and deliver before you are rewarded.
• We are in a situation which is termed by our enemy as ‘no peace, no war’. In fact, we have snatched peace from the jaws of war and we will protect it with our lives. At the same time, you must realize that peace is not an end in itself. Our decades of efforts will be wasted if we are unable to protect the base from where our nation will rise to the heights of economic sovereignty and ideological maturity thus truly becoming the Quaid’s Pakistan. Like many countries in the past, we have also been subjected to wars, terrorism and economic strangulation that has broken many countries, but Alhamdulliah we have survived! Now, it is only through the synergy and actualization of our true national potential that we shall rise and progress. That is why we have put our heart and soul into achieving stability by keeping the Quaid’s vision of “peace within and peace without” as our motto. The journey has been tough but we have stayed the course. It gives me great satisfaction to see various institutions of Pakistan gaining strength, not only standing without our support but rather supporting us and at times surpassing us in the service of the nation.
• The enemies who plotted our doom and destruction are watching us with disdain. Having failed and feeling frustrated, they have now subjected us to a 24/7 hybrid war. This war is not fought in the battlefields but in the minds. In previous wars, soldiers were taking the brunt on the frontline; in this new war, however, leadership at all levels is the target. It is a huge challenge that you will be confronted with from day one. Please keep in mind that not only you have to discern light from the darkness, but also protect your men from sedition. The best way to do it is to just follow the SOPs, traditions and time-tested ethos of the Army. Remember, we are all soldiers of Pakistan regardless of our caste, creed, sect and ethnicity and we will always stand together as one, as this is our strength.
• The objective of hybrid war is to target the sense of hope in Pakistan and to perpetuate the perception of “Yahan kuch acha nahi ho sakta”. Let me tell you, “Yahan sub acha hoga”. We Pakistanis always find a way, and that we will “In Sha Allah”
• But do not confuse sincere critique from hybrid war. Most voices that might seem loud to you come from a place of love, patriotism and trust and therefore must be heeded. We must listen to our people and apply corrections where needed. These voices are a proof that we are alive as well as a nation that is moving in the right direction. Our strength is our strong bond with our people, constitution of our country, democracy and the democratic values that our people follow and therefore we shall defend this bond and our democratic values to the hilt.
• Our actions are guided by the Constitution and the national interest of Pakistan. You will appreciate that today Pakistan is, Alhamdullilah, secure from the military point of view. We continue to support the Government whenever asked to as per the law and guidelines of the Constitution. We Pakistanis have proved that we can do wonders when we keep national interest above our parochial, institutional and personal interests. Our fight against terrorism, COVID-19, floods and our response to locust threat is a testimony to both our capacity to work and deliver. These are important undertakings and Pakistan Army is proud to support the nation as it has always supported us, especially when we were fighting the physical enemies of Pakistan.
• It is my prayer and wish that tomorrow, when one of you stands at my place, you stand as the military leader of a Pakistan that has arrived at its rightful place as a happy and prosperous homeland where Muslims of South Asia will not only have finally found their panacea of a modern Islamic state but also, where all minorities are equally happy and are considered valuable citizens – and where all institutions stand equally robust and capable in service of the nation.
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