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February 28, 2020

Victory of PAF’s Operation Swift Retort celebrated at Sea View


February 28, 2020

The Pakistan Air Force (PAF) commemorated the resounding victory of Operation Swift Retort by holding a scintillating air show at Karachi’s Sea View beach on Thursday.

A huge crowd of citizens from all age groups gathered at the beach to watch the air show. The ground shook as fighter jets of the air force broke the sound barrier and performed incredible stunts.

Wing Commander Abhinandan Varthaman of the Indian Air Force had his warplane MiG-21 struck down by a missile in a dogfight following the Pulwama attack in the Indian-occupied Kashmir last February.

As Abhinandan’s plane was downed, he ejected and descended safely in the village of Horran in Azad Kashmir, some seven kilometres from the Line of Control. He was captured by the villagers before being handed over to the Pakistan Army, and was released by the Pakistani government in 60 hours as a peace gesture.

The entire Pulwama attack saga is referred to as Operation Swift Retort. Living up to its legacy, our air force yet again made its mark through professional excellence and valour during last year’s Operation Swift Retort.

The PAF’s JF-17 Thunder, F-16, Mirage jet fighter and helicopters took part in the air show. The Sherdil Squadron dazzled the sky with the colours of the Pakistani flag.

The show formally started with the national anthem. The crowd applauded the spectacular display of the air show by the PAF. Firecrackers were set off to clear the airspace of birds.

Sindh Governor Imran Ismail and Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah were the chief guests of the air show. Ismail told the media that for Pakistan February 27 is a historic day,

when we gave a big surprise to India.

The governor said Pakistan’s enemies had attempted to cross our borders but they were foiled by the PAF. The entire country is celebrating this day with great zeal, he added. “Indeed, the PAF’s prompt, measured and surprising response busted the aggressor’s arrogance,” said the Air Chief while addressing a ceremony held at the Air Headquarters in Islamabad to commemorate the PAF’s resounding victory in Operation Swift Retort.

Air Chief Marshal Mujahid Anwar Khan, the Chief of Air Staff of the PAF, was the chief guest on the occasion. Addressing the audience, he said: “While I assure the Pakistani nation on the preparedness of the PAF to counter threats, we will not compromise on the sovereignty or territorial integrity of Pakistan. Let there be no doubt that the PAF is and would continue to ensure the fundamental of national defence.”

He added that prior to the aggression last year, Pakistan’s national leadership had made it amply clear that no misadventure against the country would ever be let go without a response.

“Today I reiterate that commitment and caution. To respond to the aggressor was our compulsion, but measured and calibrated response was entirely our choice. Make no mistake: when the PAF responds to any irresponsible act, we may not always exercise restraint.”

Former air chiefs and a large number of PAF officials witnessed the ceremony. Earlier, a smartly turned out contingent of the PAF presented the Guard of Honour.

Another important event of the ceremony was a spectacular fly past by two formations of the PAF’s fighter aircraft, including F-16s, JF-17s and the Mirage aircraft. The ceremony was rounded off with a soulful performance by the young students of the Fazaia schools and colleges.