MM Alam: The exceptional hero of India-Pakistan War

MM Alam or Muhammad Mahmood Alam was a Pakistani Air Commodore who was credited as “flying ace” having knocked down nine Indian Air Force aircraft during the Indo-Pak War that took place in 1965, including five Hawker Hunter aircraft in the first attack on 7 September 1965 that became the world record.

Alam was an F-86 Sabre flying ace as per Pakistan records and one-star general in the Pakistan Air Force, he was born in Kolkata on July 6, 1935, into an educated family. After completing his secondary education from the government high school, Dhaka in 1951.He joined the PAF in 1952 and was granted commission in Oct 1953.

He attended several courses in the United States and the United Kingdom. His major appointments included at air gunnery and as tactical instructor at the Fighter Leader School, commanding officer of three squadrons, director of operations research and as assistant chief of the air staff (flight safety and plans) at the air headquarters. Alam never married just for the love with his country, he didn’t want any kind of distraction to make the country pay during the period of his services.

In 1965 Indo-Pak war Squadron Leader M.M. Alam knocked down two enemy aircraft and damaged rest three on Sept 6 in less than a minute, that became a world record and thus becoming an ‘ace’ pilot in the 1965 war against India in a brief time.

This solo achievement was neither achieved by American fighter pilots in Korea, Vietnam or in The Middle East nor by any fighter pilots during World War II.
Those 55 seconds in the foggy weather of September 1965 unleashed an extraordinary violent anger into the veins of Indian Air Force whose backbone was almost crushed by this greatest fighter pilot of
the modern jet warfare era and overall, one of the best in the history of fighter flying.

He was awarded Sitara-i-Jur’(“The star of courage”), the nation’s third highest military award and Bar for his actions during the Indo-Pakistani War of 1965. The Air Force sensation was suffering from the illness from December 2012 and was admitted to Naval Station Shifa Hospital in Karachi.After the prolonged illnesses, on March 2013 M.M.Alam breathed his last in Karachi.Alam was suffering from respiratory but his health had steadily lately and remained under treatment for a year and a half.

His funeral was offered at the PAF Base Masroor, where he provided some the finest years of his air force life. He was later laid to rest at the Shuhuda (Martyrs) graveyard at PAF Masroor Airbase.

His nickname was ” Little Dragon” and gave his whole life in defending Pakistan.
On 20 March 2014, in his honor, the Airbase Mianwali was renamed after him as PAF Base M.M Alam on his first death anniversary.

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