Dawn News

Educators in the armed forces

THIS is apropos of Cdr (Rtd) Khalid Durrani’s letter ‘Never-ending pleasure’ (Jan 19). I would like to say that the teaching profession is the most looked-down-upon in the armed forces.

I was a teacher in Cadet College, Petaro, in 1968 and joined the PAF in the education branch in search of honour and prestige. I spent 30 years in the PAF and always had a feeling that I was being discriminated against just because I was a teacher.

All education officers were considered children of a lesser god and were given derogatory names like a ‘schooli’ or a ‘master’. I heaved a sigh of relief when I retired from the PAF and joined a reputable institution as a teacher. I felt as if my lost honour and prestige had been restored and I was not being treated as an unequal among equals.

I urge the armed forces to inculcate love and respect for knowledge, books and teachers in their institutions. I assure them there is no dichotomy between soldiering and knowledge.


Comments (8) Closed

Jan 25, 2013 02:59pm
Air Cdre Durrani sir, with due respect, allow me to ask that how could you manage to get one star rank if you were deemed unfit and were discriminated. Rank and status given to you by PAF belies your claim. "There is no greater difference between men than between grateful and ungrateful people" R H Blyth quotes....
Mohummud Idrees Husain
Jan 24, 2013 07:57am
Air Cdre (rtd) Khayyam Durrani's letter is valid to the degree that the armed forces encourage dynamic action over abstract thought and to that degree treat knowledge other than that directly connected with warfare as amorous, even anomalous and ephemeral. This is against the nature of the fighting beast, and therefore, discouraged. PAF too encourages fighter pilots over other constituents and the overall dimensions of warfare and civilization is overlooked. It's a pity that we haven't outgrown the formative years and developed our own ethos of warfare, strategies and tactics, keeping our temper and culture in view. And this is true for all forces and civilian bureaucracy as well. We have not been innovative nor encouraged innovation. We must be enterprising and develop knowledge related to all aspects of our life for ourselves and by ourselves instead of living on borrowed thought. The Quran provides ample illustration for developing the methodologies for every aspect of knowledge from the rudimentary to the complex. And history too shows that only those succeed to overcome obstacles who are creative enough to develop their own solutions. Let the light of knowledge focus and expand the horizons through concentration, application and discussion. M Idrees Husain San Ldr (Rtd)
Jan 25, 2013 10:22am
I still did not get the point of this reply besides using a few high sounding words here and there!
Jan 24, 2013 10:55pm
If you had so much problems with being in PAF, why did you continued there for such a long time and retired as an Air Cdre, you could have taken retirement earlier and ended your misery. But it was not for the sake of education that you continued working at PAF but also your self gains, if you didnot like the environment there you should have left it much earlier.
Jan 25, 2013 04:24am
This is a problem of Pakistani Socirty as a whole. Teachers get respect when they are knowledgeable.
Jan 25, 2013 05:30am
Why didn't you join a reputable institution earlier and heave a sigh of relief!!!! Please return your rank and all priviliges you are enjoying thanks to PAF if that is how you truly felt.......
Razi Faruqi
Jan 25, 2013 07:01am
Sir, I'm amazed that you continued to serve for 30 long years in an institution which you claim discriminated against you. Your rise to the rank of an Air Cdre is not only a credit to your competence but also to the fine service that realised it. I served in the same service and have nothing but love and respect for the education branch officers that I interacted with. Ex- PAF officer
Jan 25, 2013 07:56am
i think we are looking at it from teacher's prespective only... have you ever thought that for any service army navy or airforce training years are the toughest any one dding to your troubles my it be a drill sargent or a teacher..u know the outcome.and i agree we nither have gr8 teachers nor do we have the students of tht level..still you made it to be an air cdr..not many teachers make tht far don't u think??