Govt wants to build air force like developed countries: PM

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Dhaka, Dec 30: Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina today expressed her government’s keen interest to make the air force like developed countries, saying the ultra-modern fighter planes, air defence radar and missile were already inducted to the force to turn the desire into reality, reports BSS.

“We have already incorporated ultra-modern fighter planes, air defence radar, missile and necessary equipment to Bangladesh Air Force (BAF) alongside setting up new ghatis (wings), units and training institute — we want to build the air force like developed countries,” she said.

The prime minister said this while addressing as the chief guest the “President Parade (winter)-2021” of the Bangladesh Air Force Academy, joining virtually from her official Ganabhaban residence here.

The BAF is going to get soon various modern planes, high-performance air defence radar, simulator, ATS simulator, laser guided bomb and anti-ship missile which will multiply its capacity, she said.

The prime minister called upon the fresh cadets to be prepared in such a way keeping in mind the Father of the Nation’s ideals as they can play an active role in fulfilling the country’s expectations by serving the nation.

She hoped that the fresher would march the force ahead by using their talent, professionalism and patriotism from the current position that was achieved by your predecessors’ far-sightedness, professionalism and hard work.

The prime minister greeted the new cadets as they are going to join the air force upon completion of their three years training.

She asked the cadets to always love the country and its people and perform the responsibilities bestowed on them with sincerity and honesty.

“Protect the independence and sovereignty of the country that were shouldered upon you after taking the oath,” she added.

Highlighting her government’s various measures taken for the overall development of the air force, the premier said they have purchased the fourth generation MIG-29 and C-130 and high performance air protection radar alongside infrastructure development coming to power in 1996 after 21 years.

Describing the armed forces as the symbol of country’s independence and sovereignty, Sheikh Hasina said her government has been implementing the “Forces Goal-2030” to build a developed and professional force.

The “Forces Goal-2030” was formulated in line with the Defence Policy of 1974 adopted by Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, she said.

The prime minister said that they have established Bangabandhu Aeronautical Centre to ensure safe and affordable management and overhauling of the planes, radars and military equipment.

She said that Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman Aviation and Aerospace University was established to ensure overall development of the air force and make time-worthy the civil aviation sector.

The prime minister said, “InshaAllah, we will once attain ability in building planes, helicopters and fighter planes with the knowledge to be obtained through research from the university.”

Her government has always attached priority on conducting research regarding space, she said.

She also said her government has added ultra-modern fly-by-wire, digital cockpit based YAK-130 combat trainer, K-8W Z trainer, L-410 transport trainer, AW-119KX helicopter trainer and various simulators to the air force to ensure a developed and time-befitting flying training for its future generation cadets.

Bangladesh Air Force arranged a spectacular parade and colourful fly past at its Jashore Academy on the occasion which the premier virtually witnessed from her Ganabhaban residence.

Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal Shaikh Abdul Hannan later gave a vote of thanks to the prime minister for joining the programme.

He, on behalf of the premier, earlier handed over the ‘Sword of Honour’ ‘Chief of Air Staff Trophy’ ‘Commandants Trophy’ and other prizes among the best cadets.