Pakistan remembers 1965 war hero MM Alam on 5th death anniversary

KARACHI, March 18 (INP): The fifth death anniversary of the 1965 war hero, Air Commodore (r) Muhammad Mahmood Alam, popular as MM Alam, was observed across the country on Sunday.

During 1965 Pak-India war when he was posted as the commander of No 11 Squadron at Sargodha, the ace pilot made a unique world record by shooting down five Indian fighter aircraft in 55 seconds while flying his F-86 Sabre fighter. He downed nine Indian Hawker Hunter fighters in the aerial fighting and damaged two others.

This unique feat was neither achieved by American fighter pilots in Korea or Vietnam or in the Middle East nor by any European or American fighter pilots during World War II despite their long engagements.

He was awarded the Sitara-e-Jura’at (The Star of Courage), a Pakistani military decoration, for his actions during the war.

Born on July 6, 1935, in a well-educated family of Calcutta, British India, MM Alam was the eldest of 11 siblings. The family migrated from Calcutta to Eastern Bengal which became East Pakistan following the formation of Pakistan in 1947. He joined the then RPAF (now PAF) in 1952 being commissioned on October 2, 1953.

His family moved to West Pakistan in around 1971 after the secession of East Pakistan.

In 1982, Alam retired from PAF as an air commodore and took up residence in Karachi. Alam died in Karachi on March 18, 2013, at the age of 77.

MM Alam Road, a major road running from Main Market to Gulberg in Lahore, Punjab, is named in his honour.