GVS News Desk |
Flight Lieutenant Ayesha Farooq was the first female to become a fighter pilot in Pakistan Air Force and in fact, in all of South Asia in 2013. She now flies missions in a Chinese-made Chengdu J-7 fighter jet alongside her 24 male colleagues in Squadron 20.
Her father, a doctor, died when she was only three years old and since then, her mother supported her daughters (Ayesha and a younger sister) to enable and empower them to achieve their desires.
Ayesha was the kind of girl who would go out to play cricket and football. Outdoor sports were her forte and where she was happiest.
Ayesha was the kind of girl who would go out to play cricket and football. Outdoor sports were her forte and where she was happiest. This rugged and adventurous spirit persisted over the years and led her to find inspiration in her cousin and her uncles, who are also Air Force officers.
After making this decision, Ayesha received an expected part-skeptical and part-concerned response from her relatives. Uncles tried to dissuade her, worried that the demanding career would eventually drain her out, more so because of her gender.
The physical training one undergoes at the flight school involves waking up at 4.30 am every morning for a mile-long run before starting the day. Moreover, they have to carry an MG3, a machine gun, which weighs about four kilograms for two hours.
However, nothing could kill her spirit and all this only served as encouragement and made her more determined than ever. Her mother never wavered in her support.