Ayesha Farooq, remember the name, mates! Youthful, determined, and lionhearted, the lady is Pakistan Air Force’s, first female fighter pilot and assigned to one of Pakistan’s front-line. This “war-ready” female fighter pilot serving and defending the skies and prestige of Pakistan.
“I don’t feel any different. We do the same activities, the same precision bombing.”
Bahawalpur, a city of forts is famous for many things, but Ayesha Farooq has bestowed an honour to this city in an atypical way. She was born on August 24, 1987, in Qaimpur, Bahawalpur district. In 2013, at the age of 26, after qualifying the final exams she created history in the country, and through this gratifying achievement, she lifted the heads of the whole nation on the battlefield.
In her interview with Youlin in 2013, this lady was explored as a gentle and graceful personality, young by her age ready to combat every fighting project for her country. The passion was ignited and unprecedented.
The Beginning of Her Life
At a very early age of just three, she lost her father Dr. Farooq, who was certainly a thoroughly respected member of his community. Her mother had always been an inspiration for her two little daughters. Ayesha Farooq claimed that she was certain of the thought from her girlhood age that she had to work even harder to establish her place and get acknowledged in society. The journey was never that much facile, especially for a woman in our prudent society. She was about to break all the barriers and slender mindset of the community to which she allied to. Her early inspiration was one of her uncles, who himself was a pilot in PAF. She was audible for the thought that she had to go certainly substantial in her profession. And, by attiring forces uniform, she would manifest her intentions.
“I am not somebody big or important,” says Ayesha. “My achievements and whatever I have made of myself, all of it is a consequence of what my mother has done for us.”
Her life after High School
After accomplishing her high school degree, she was up to her dream destination at PAF Academy Risalpur. After passing through all the initial tests of Medical, IQ, and Physical she appeared in flying aptitude tests, and without any delays, she finally cleared them all. Let me remind the ones who think that becoming a pilot is a game of juveniles. They are absolutely mistaken, even to get close to fly the first aircraft is a hell of a task.
The cadets first appear in the BS Aero Science program and to go through it they must acquire 90% marks, then cadets receive their first primary training followed by basic training on P-37. Passing through this basic program they graduate to their first fighter conversion unit to fly K-8. The flying of actual fighter jet F-7 only after proper training. The final stage then appointed to graduated squadrons where they certainly become established, operational pilots.
The need for an Unbreakable spirit
This meticulous and intense surviving goes really tough for men and even hefty for women. According to flight lieutenant, there was not much of the difference in training between males and females. She has swiftly gone through every physical training program because of the stamina she built over the years through outdoor activities. Also, you have to negotiate with your mental and social stresses. They have to break your personality and remake you in a certain mould.
Unquestionably, there are definite tasks in which women find themselves in reluctancy but once you demonstrate your skills and prove your capability, you will be welcomed in the folds. As she is the only squadron in her batch, the pilot shares more her thoughts regarding this experience. It’s Brilliant! she confessed. The Air Force is one of those organizations that has a motivating ambiance and the cadets or each of one working under Air Force badge is quite obliging and thorough professionals in attaining their duties.’’ We are like a Family”, the squadron explained.
Ayesha Farooq further explained her fact to fight in the battlefields. It is my duty to fight against all odds, there is literally no chance to think whether a male or female is gliding an aircraft like no enemy ever thinks of it, they just see a plane and hit their targets.
Her first mission
I remember when I was called on to fly my first solo mission after joining the squadron, she illumed, started with a prayer, it was an implausible experience. I was a bit thrilled with the fact that this time it was only me in the cockpit and the plane is on my command. The experience was unutterable when it hits me on the charge and I was flying thousands of feet high with the skyline. The cheering colleagues were waiting for me to land, they greeted me with high hopes and with warm hearts.
Her statement: “I probably find going on a bombing run more comfortable than giving an interview!”, is really inspiring to me.
What a joy this is been for such a young and enthusiastic lady! We truly appreciate a woman like Miss. Ayesha Farooq who is going beyond the conservative approach and becoming a convincing inspiration for all the women infield positions. She is also a part of the rapid enhancing of women in Pakistan Armed Forces.
In every profession, women are making their marks. Their fellow mates and even families are starting to embrace them too. This is a society which we are proud to be a part of. We are also witnessing a dominating boost and urge by the fathers and families to join armed forces for their daughters.
Reply to an interview
She answered an interview by accepting that she was a bit hesitant in certain fields of life. But after Joining Air Force she set off to a more responsive start. She started to carry a feel and urge of becoming a robust personality. She also revealed that a firm change of attitude had also taken place in her family’s attitude. Her opinions started to seem mindful and essential to their conversations. According to her, “a minute change has also occurred in my girlish avatar, this can be seen distinctly when I go home and on shopping with my friends or mother, because being a pilot or part of armed forces, the practical wear has impinged me firmly’’. The younger girls are trying to reprint in her footsteps.
On a question regarding her ultimate goal for life, she replied without skipping a beat, “I want to fly F-17”.
Ayesha Farooq is a privilege and utter inspiration to the youth. Especially, to all the young famines of our society. Never hold back neither let your fears conquer your dreams, everything is a state of mind.
We should pay tribute to these pearls of our nation in every best possible way to uplift their determination for serving this fractious country, Pakistan.