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PAF s' Squadrons

No. 9 Squadron History: 1947-1982

Inherited from the former Royal Indian Air Force, this is the oldest squadron in the Pakistan Air Force. It was formed at Lahore on January 3, 1944 under the command of Squadron Leader A. W. Ridler, and was originally equipped with Hurricane II-C aircraft. The squadron moved to Arakan (Burma) for action against the Japanese, and remained on active duties till 14th April 1945, first at Hathazari near Chittagong, and then at Ranchi in Bihar; at Ranchi it covered to Spitfire VIII aircraft armed with four 20m.m cannons. It was Indianized in June, 1945, and Sqn. Ldr. M. Asghar Khan (later Air Marshal and the first Muslim Commander-in-Chief of the PAF) was appointed its Commander with Flt. Lt. M. Akhtar (later Air Vice Marshal) as his Flight Commander.

In recognition of its services during the Second World War, the squadron was presented a Japanese General's sword on 27th January, 1946.

After the Partition, the squadron was allotted to Pakistan and in its new capacity it was formed at Peshawar on August 15, 1947 as single engine fighter squadron under command of Sqn. Ldr. M. Ibrahim Khan.

The squadron's unique distinction is that from its gallery of leadership, four of its Commanders, M. Asghar Khan, Rahim Khan, Zafar A. Chaudhry and Zulfiqar Ali Khan, reached the highest posts and commanded the PAF.

Important Visits:

The squadron was visited by Air Vice Marshal Perry Keene, Commander PAF, on 19th September, 1947.

On 16th January, 1948 came Nawabzada Liaquat Ali Khan, Prime Minister of Pakistan.

The Quaid-e-Azam Muhammad Ali Jinnah paid a visit on 11th April, 1948, while Field Marshal Ayub Khan, President of Pakistan, came on 15th March, 1962.

After the Independence, the squadron had the honour of flying the green crescent and star flag of Pakistan, For the first time in the history of the sub-continent, it formed a four place formation aerobatic team in April, 1951. On 23rd March, 1964, for the first time in the history of Pakistan, eight supersonic F-104 aircraft belonging to the squadron participated in the Republic Day fly-past.

The squadron actively participated in the 1965 and 1971 wars with India. Amongst its officers who won honours were Sqn. Ldr. Jamal A. Khan who was awarded S. Bt. on 14th August, 1963, and Sqn. Ldr. Middlecoat who was awarded S. J. with Bar. Sqn. Ldr. Jamal A. Khan, Flt. Lt. Amjad H. Khan and Flt. Lt. Samad A. Changezi received S. J.

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