One Nation, One Destiny Female Contingent in Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade

Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade is an event where Armed Forces of Pakistan put up a power show and communicate a clear message to the enemy: we support peace and strive for regional harmony, but if you dare to violate our boundaries we are capable of not only protecting our land, sky and water but will strike a blow that will be remembered by your future generations. Feet marching on ground, mechanized columns with their deafening sound and thunder of jets soaring in the sky are glimpses of our Armed Forces’ readiness, vigilance and preparedness to not only retaliate but “surprise” the enemy. 

Pakistan Day Parade as always proved that women in Pakistan are given equal opportunities and I was blessed enough to live this experience. The women’s contingent stood alongside men in sweltering heat, holding the same weapons, they banged their heels on the ground with the same zeal that not only shakes the ground but shatters the confidence and plans of the enemy, proving that women of Pakistan are as ready as its men to safeguard their motherland.
In Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade 2021, women had representation in every aspect of the parade, be it mechanized columns or administration, medical assistance or media handling, representation of different cultures through cultural floats or showing diversity of regional music, overall coordination of the parade and controlling air traffic for the awe-inspiring air show. Being a part of this parade was a dream come true and as a part of the ladies’ contingent the urge to do better increased with every passing day, and with every step the responsibility of representing women of my nation multiplied. The honour of wearing Pakistani flag on our sleeves held our heads high and the thought of representing almost 50% of the population boosted our stamina to stand for hours. The applause and appreciation from our comrades motivated us to keep walking and helped us bag 2nd position among the best marching contingents.
Another fascinating angle of our contingent was that it represented women from all forces: there were tri-services officers tri-services nursing officers and lady officers from Airport Security Force, Rangers and Police. All of them represented their respective arm showing the whole world that these “sisters in arms” are fearless and capable of securing and safeguarding their motherland no matter what field, weather or conditions; and this passion was visible on their faces and in their words when asked about how they felt about being a part of Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade 2021.

I always wanted to be a part of JS Pak Day Parade and fortunately this year I was selected to participate. It was a great honor for me to lead the Ladies’ contingent and represent Pakistan Army. During our rigorous drill practices, we collected a lot of memories and meeting other segments of Pakistan Army as well as LyOs of Navy, Air Force and Civil Armed Forces, such as Police, Rangers and ASF is one that I will forever cherish. I feel pride and thank God for this honour.
Maj Dr. Sunila Contingent Commander

My experience of being a part the parade contingent for 2021 has been amazing. Of course, it was a demanding task as far as physical stamina is concerned but apart from that, representing Pakistan Air force LyOs has been an honor and nevertheless a proud moment for me and my family. 
Initially, I was quite apprehensive about how I was going to take up the task and the kind of team I would work with but I consider myself lucky to have worked with an amazing group of people. When we started working together, we were just coworkers but in time, we became each other's support system. This led to an impeccable performance in the parade. It was my first time working with not only the tri-services LyOs but also with female officers from the Civil Armed Forces. It was a wonderful experience for me, on professional as well as personal level. 
Sq Ldr Saima Kiran

It was a memorable day when I arrived at the parade venue for March 23. I was a part of the LyOs contingent and words cannot do justice to the expressions on the face of each participant. The experience was definitely a tiresome one but at the end of the day, it reminds me of why I chose this field. It revitalizes my love for my homeland. Each and every step elevated morale to the highest level. The comradeship I experienced in the contingent is unexplainable, the formations and step keeping, an unbreakable bond irrespective of the services and cadre. It was definitely a great experience and a source of pride for all.
Lt Rabia, Pakistan Navy

My experience of Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade is no different from the rest of the officers, jawaans and everyone else standing in the parade ground. Amid quenching heat and COVID-19 restrictions, the only thing that kept me going was the motivation to represent my country internationally. This motivation that is embedded in every soldier and officer is vital for the nation to feel protected and soldiers to give their 100 percent in every field: may it be battle field or the parade ground.
Capt Hira Mehreen 

Alhumdulillah, it was a proud moment and honor for me to be a part of the Pakistan Day Parade 2021. Like other countries, Pakistan is also fighting against COVID-19 and celebrating Pakistan Day Parade was a big challenge for both military as well as the nation but credit goes to the management whose efforts made it possible. As part of the ladies’ contingent, I had an amazing experience and felt proud participating with other LyOs and women from other forces.
Lt Maaza Kanwal, AFNS

March 23 and its chronicles bring a rush of adrenaline. To add to this vim and vigour, Pakistan Forces arrange a breathtaking display of discipline, military might and resolve at Shakarparian Parade Ground. Years back I was amid the spectators, fluttering my small Pakistani flag hoisted on a straw as high as my arm could manage. This year I had the honour of being a part of the magnificent parade. Running errands making sure seconds were calculated right and to repeat the exercise three times a day and ninety times a month, all the effort that every individual in the parade ground put in to paint a single picture that illustrates the essence of Pakistan forces was visible and are acknowledged worldwide. Despite the parade being postponed to March 25, the essence of the day was not lost because for Pakistanis every day is an opportunity to strive for Aik Qoam Aik Manzil.
Capt Emaan Durrani 

This one month seemed exhausting but it revitalized the reasons I joined Pakistan Armed Forces. This occasion was not only a source of pride for me but also enabled me to make good friends with my colleagues in sister forces. Indeed, this is one of the best and unforgettable experiences of my life.
Lt Kanwal Ibrahim Niaz, Pakistan Navy

Many citizens look forward to Pakistan Day Parade, which is an inspirational grand military show. Naysayers ask why we hold the parade as it is a waste of our money. A simple reply to them: why not? Why should we not salute the national heroes who struggled for Pakistan and those who fought for the protection of its borders? Pakistan Day Parade 2021 was more than just a marvelous show. For me, a part of it is celebration, some of it is a show of strength and most of it is a feeling of pride, symbol of unity and an epitome of faith. I feel honoured to have been a part of it.
Flt Lt Aqsa Nawaz

Representation of women in Joint Services Pakistan Day Parade is a message to the world that Pakistan respects, values and honours its daughters. It is a country where men and women serve together to achieve the goal of a progressive and prosperous Pakistan, where all move forward as “One Nation” and all have “One Destiny” — a growing, developing and progressing Pakistan.HH


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