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First Pakistani women paratroopers make history

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan's first group of female paratroopers completed their training on Sunday, the military announced, hailing it as a “landmark achievement” for the country.

Captain Kiran Ashraf was declared the best paratrooper of the batch of 24, the military said in a statement, while Captain Sadia, referred to by one name, became the first woman officer to jump from a MI-17 helicopter.

Women have limited opportunities in Pakistan's highly traditional, patriarchal society. The United Nations says only 40 per cent of adult women are literate, and they are frequently the victims of violence and abuse.

But in 2006 seven women broke into one of Pakistan's most exclusive male clubs to graduate as fighter pilots -- perhaps the most prestigious job in the powerful military and for six decades closed to the fairer sex.

After three weeks' basic airborne training, which included exit, flight and landing techniques, the new paratroopers completed their first jump on Sunday and were given their “wings” by the commander of Special Services Group, Major General Abid Rafique, the military said.

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Comments (39) Closed

Ali Hassan
Jul 14, 2013 05:15pm

God bless these women in uniform. Her male fauji counterparts are proud of her too.

Thank you for your service to Pakistani Nation

God bless our Military

anwar khushab
Jul 14, 2013 05:20pm

Absolutely terrific!

Jul 14, 2013 05:35pm

First women paratroopers were from PAF who carried out their jumps more than 5 years ago and it also got widespread publicity at that time. Please verify your facts Mr Reporter.

Jul 14, 2013 06:26pm


Jul 14, 2013 06:28pm

Being a "five jump commando" does NOT make you a Paratrooper! Get it right..

Agha Ata
Jul 14, 2013 07:24pm

I am not impressed with these achievements of women. Not at all :( You know why? Because in my view they are capable of doing things 1,000 times better. and many things better than men. And mind you, they are going to prove it, all over the world. Men spread themselves too thin on many subjects; women concentrate on the needs of the time. Wives have been proving it for thousands of years. . . Yes, I am a male feminist!

Amjad Wyne
Jul 14, 2013 07:48pm

@Ahmad: I believe you meant, "the first women to jump". Please remember that not all that are required to jump as part of their military training are paratroopers.

Jul 14, 2013 08:03pm

Couldn't have been a better news today . Salute to them

Jul 14, 2013 08:03pm

@Ali Hassan: Is it not anti-islamic as per Pakistani culture........ ?

Atiq Shah
Jul 14, 2013 08:31pm

@Ahmad: Paratrooper jumping is different from fighter pilot para jumping. Paratroopers have a different role and the training is not the same as that of pilots. So this is rightly called the first batch of female paratroopers.

syed baqar ahsan
Jul 14, 2013 10:53pm

These jumping proud girls AIRBORNE for Pakistan, deserve well done.Don't worry about rogue TTP Ehsan ullah Ehsan and of there type, they will be sorted in the near future.

Jul 14, 2013 11:01pm

need goggles!!!

Jul 15, 2013 12:36am

will they fight taliban?

Manzoor Ahmad
Jul 15, 2013 12:50am

Well Congratulation BRAVE LADIES ''' The nation is proud of you, God bless you and keep it up ,,these kind of things makes us proud ,otherwise we in a mess.

Omair Rahman
Jul 15, 2013 01:14am


Jul 15, 2013 01:18am

All Pakistanis are proud of our sisters in their achievements!

Amjad Wyne
Jul 15, 2013 02:08am

They make us (the entire nation) proud of itself - No one said it was easy on them but women like these can change the course of this nation. Thank you again.

Jul 15, 2013 02:50am

@Ahmad: Airforce personnel are not para troopers, these are army officers clearly using a parachute does not make you a para trooper. The facts are correct .

Jul 15, 2013 05:17am

No doubt Pakistan woman are strongest and talented . But we have to appreciate all the people including politician , policy makers and epically there families who breaking these barrier.

Jul 15, 2013 05:55am

Kitchen on air

Malik Nawaz
Jul 15, 2013 07:27am

I only hope that our women do better job then our men.....................!!!!!!!

Jul 15, 2013 07:32am

Mr Report, please explain what do you mean by "perhaps the most prestigious job in the powerful military and for six decades closed to the fairer sex" Fairer sex? Explain!!!!

Jul 15, 2013 09:50am

i totally disagree with this whole act.... Woman should never in fighting in the first place except for few professions like teaching , paramedic, cook etc. As per science says men are less emotional and think more logically and vice versa for women. So when time will come where you have take decision , women most likely to choose herself over the country...... as she will think of her family, friends etc and will not sacrifice ......

Jul 15, 2013 09:57am

I'd really love to know who are the people thumbing down the positive comments? Mullahs don't read dawn, do they?

Jul 15, 2013 10:33am

thumbs up.

Jul 15, 2013 10:35am

thumbs up !!

Jul 15, 2013 11:00am

Women have limited opportunities in Pakistan's highly traditional, patriarchal society. The United Nations says only 40 per cent of adult women are literate, and they are frequently the victims of violence and abuse.

Seriously?? Learn to localize the copy.

Jul 15, 2013 11:02am

Would love to see them para dropped in India. Will welcome with flower garlands.....

Prakash Rao
Jul 15, 2013 11:35am

Congratulations. Now you must aim at Sky diving.

Jul 15, 2013 11:52am

You girls in uniform look awesome. Allah bless Pakistan.

Jul 15, 2013 01:42pm

I hope now Shirmeen Chinoy makes a movie on this as well. The image of Pakistan is being portrayed as if all the men are throwing acid on women's face and all the men are shooting little school going girls in their heads. However, we never tell the world that we have the most capable and most talented women who have made their mark on the global arena. This is also Pakistan!

Jul 15, 2013 02:55pm

@Ali Hassan: "God bless our military" ---- for having done the most harm to our country. Wake up Mr. Hasan

Jul 15, 2013 07:22pm

Its a great step forward. Pakistan is torn between progressive and regressive changes...hope the progressive win in the end.

Jul 15, 2013 08:40pm

Bravo! Keep going girls !!

Desi from Lahore
Jul 16, 2013 04:07am

@Paki: Think about this,who gave you birth? I wish she had changed her mind about giving you birth.Women have the right to do anything they desire,just like the men.You are just afraid that a woman can and will do better then you,I think thats great.There is a reason why GOD didn't put the heaven under the man's feet or give us the ability to give birth,he knew we would mess it all up lol.I would like to tell each and every one of these young ladies whether a paratrooper or a GD pilot how happy and proud I am.Its not an easy task,thousands of boys fail even trying to get into the academies much less become one.BRAVO.

AR Khan
Jul 16, 2013 11:07am

@Pakistan: Frankly, as I suspect, these lady officers are most probably employed on office work only. So far they are not entrusted for field duties. Moreover, this is an adventure course with little or no relevance in subsequent employment in Army's elite special service group.

Jul 16, 2013 12:06pm

gr8 job

Jul 16, 2013 02:04pm

God Bless YOU you all, made us proud really proud , keep up the good work

Iftikhar Shah Gilani
Jul 17, 2013 02:13am

All the best to our 1st Women Paratrooper badge of 24. This important and memorable jump must have recorded and suggested to released to general public for motivation to other citizens of Pakistan.