2016 was a busy year for the Pakistan Division, with a number of special events held to increase the profile of the Society in Pakistan, including a high-quality lecture programme and two new Branches launched.
A year of events
Lecturers and members of the Divisional Council on the occasion of Aviation Seminar held by RAeS Pakistan Division in February 2016. The Chief Guest, ACM Sohail Aman, FRAeS, is seated in the centre with the President of the Pakistan Division on his right and the Immediate Past President on his left. (via AM Salim Arshad)
ACM Sohail Aman, CAS PAF, presenting a memento to Prof Chris Atkin during the 150-year Celebratory Dinner held at Karachi; ACM Salim Arshad FRAeS and Col. Mukhtar Asif FRAeS looking on. (via AM Salim Arshad)
- In February, the Chief of the Air Staff of the Pakistan Air Force, ACM Sohail Aman, HI(M), FRAeS, was the chief guest at a day-long Aviation Seminar held at the country’s Air War College at Karachi. The seminar, entitled “Aeronautics — Historical Perspective, Present and Future” was well-attended by both young and old, included four papers presented by eminent aviation specialists from Pakistan on current topics of interest and concluded with an hour-long discussion moderated by the Divisional President, AM Salim Arshad, FRAeS.
- March and April saw two absorbing lectures on Space Technology and its Applications delivered by Air Cdre Arshad Siraj, FRAeS, a former Head of R&D at Surface and Upper Atmosphere Research Commission (SUPARCO) of Pakistan.
- Three more lectures on Aircraft Accident Investigation, Human Factors and Risk Management were delivered by learned professionals in April, May and August respectively.
- The Pakistan Division participated in an Aviation Expo in Karachi in September which drew a large group of young enthusiasts.
- In October, a field trip for school children to the PAF Museum was arranged by legendary airline pilot, Capt ‘Johnny’ Sadiq, and was a great hit.
Two new Branches opened
Full house for the launch of the Islamabad Branch. Front row, left to right: Mr Richard Meredith Hardy; Pakistan Divisional Council Members Mr Saeed Akhtar FRAeS (Hon Sec), Mr Hafeez ud Deen FRAeS (VP), AM Salim Arshad FRAeS (Pres); Prof Chris Atkin FRAeS; Council Members Capt Johnny Sadiq and Air Cdre Ashad Siraj (Hon Treas). (via AM Salim Arshad)
The Pakistan Division Council also used the sesquicentenary celebrations to launch an ambitious development programme, enrolling two new corporate partners, the Pakistan Air Force (PAF) and the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC), and launching two new branches: at Kamra, home to the PAC, in October 2016; and at Islamabad in November 2016.
The latter was officially opened by Prof Chris Atkin, who was warmly welcomed by the Division in the middle of November, along with Richard Meredith-Hardy who amused and enthused a number of audiences with his account of flying a microlight over Mount Everest in 2004. The pair took in a variety of functions aimed at raising the profile of the Society in Pakistan, starting with the 150th Anniversary Dinner in Karachi, during which both the RAeS President and the Chief of the Air Staff, PAF, emphasised the important role of the RAeS in creating a community in Pakistan around aerospace education, knowledge exchange, and standards.
New Branch at Pakistan Aeronautical Complex Kamra
RAeS President Professor Chris Atkin gets a tour of Pakistan Aeronautical Complex (PAC) in Kamra. (PAC)
The RAeS delegation then moved north to visit the Pakistan Aeronautical Complex at Kamra and the Pakistan Air Force Academy at Risalpur, also taking in the sights of Islamabad and the hospitality offered there by the PAF Officers’ Mess (having earlier enjoyed the wonderful atmosphere of the Sind Club in Karachi). The busy programme ran very smoothly and was a credit to the organising Divisional Council. The UK visitors were admirably looked after, also coming away with numerous mementos from their visit!
More Branches and Corporate Partners on the way
Aiming high - the RAeS is set to soar in Pakistan. (Pakistan Air Force)
Overall the recent efforts of the Pakistan Divisional Council are to be highly commended. Not content with the achievements of 2016, the Division has a full calendar of events for 2017 while providing guidance for the newly-formed Branches and the newly-registered Corporate Partners. At the same time the Division hopes to launch two further Branches, and to bring two more Corporate Partners into the RAeS fold.