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Address by the Hon’ble President of India Shri Ram Nath Kovind on the Occasion of Presentation of Colours to Air Force Station Hakimpet and 5 Base Repair Depot

I am happy to be here today at Air Force Station Sulur to award Colours to Air Force Station Hakimpet and 5 Base Repair Depot.

Both these stations have a rich history of professional excellence and have served the Nation with honour and distinction in peace and during hostilities. The Nation honours them today with a deep sense of gratitude and appreciation for their selfless devotion, professionalism and courage in the face of adversity.

India’s growing stature in the comity of nations is consistent with the strength and capabilities of our armed forces. India remains firmly committed to peace, but in case the need arises, we will use all our might to protect the nation’s sovereignty. I am confident that our valiant men and women in uniform will rise to the occasion. Our Armed Forces, exemplified by the air warriors who stand before us, reflect our firm resolve to defend our nation. Their valour and professionalism was on display very recently, as the Indian Air Force carried out pre-emptive strikes on a known terrorist camp.

The Indian Air Force has over the years grown into a modern, technology-intensive force distinguished by its commitment to excellence and professionalism. Keeping pace with the demands of contemporary advancements, the Indian Air Force continues to modernize in a rapid manner and is in the process of a very comprehensive modernisation plan. Besides safeguarding the sovereign skies of our nation, the Indian Air Force has also been at the forefront of all Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief operations. The resilience and tenacity displayed by our valiant air warriors is a great source of pride for the Nation.

Keeping our aircrafts air worthy is a crucial task. In this regard, 5 Base Repair Depot has been repairing and overhauling the Kiran, Avro and Dornier aircraft, many of which are maintained airworthy even after 30 years. Numerous unique indigenisation measures adopted by this Base Repair Depot to promote self reliance, have effectively contributed towards enhancing the organisational potential. 5 Base Repair Depot has truly epitomised its motto ‘Kaya Kalpa’ with continuous rejuvenation through infusion of new ideas, innovations and technological developments. The Base Repair Depot’s efforts to promote indigenous design and development of defence equipment for achieving substantive self-reliance under the ‘Make in India’ initiative are praiseworthy.

Air Force Station Hakimpet has served the Nation with distinction. The station has been imparting quality training to pilots of the Indian Air Force. The strong foundation gained by the pilots facilitated their successful further graduation to higher performance aircraft. During the wars of 1965 and 1971, the flying instructors and technical personnel of the station joined operational unit and served with remarkable courage and professionalism.

It is also to the credit of Air Force Station Hakimpet for having commenced flying training for lady pilots in Helicopter Stream in 1995 and on Fighter Stream in 2016. The station personnel have also been involved in various Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief operations.

In acknowledgement and recognition of their outstanding performance, I am pleased to award Colours to Air Force Station
Hakimpet and 5 Base Repair Depot. I take the opportunity to compliment the personnel and families of both the stations, past and present, for their selfless sacrifice and service to the Nation.
The Nation is indeed proud of you. I wish you and your families the very best and a glorious future.

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