Indian Air Force

How to be an Indian Air Force Pilot: CDSE, AFCAT and NCC Special Entry

Saikat Chakraborty
Saikat Chakraborty
Posted on 06 Nov 2021
14:07 PM
The Indian Air Force provides cutting-edge facilities and a thriving environment to its Pilots.

The Indian Air Force provides cutting-edge facilities and a thriving environment to its Pilots. Shutterstock

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Summary
You can join the Air Force Academy after finishing your BA/BSc/BCom/BE course
Physics and Maths are compulsory subjects in Class XI-XII to get into the Indian Air Force

The Indian Air Force is one of the most lucrative employers in aviation in terms of salary and other benefits. You can apply for a job in the Indian Air Force in any of the three sections: Flying branch, Ground Duty (technical) branch and Ground Duty (non-technical) branch.

Air Force Pilots are recruited by the Flying branch. You can work as any one of the three:

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  • Fighter Pilot
  • Transport Pilot
  • Helicopter Pilot

Joining the Indian Air Force as a Pilot: The three routes

You can join the Flying branch through the Air Force Academy after finishing your BA/BSc/BCom/BE course. Graduates from any discipline can join the Flying branch of the Air Force through any of the three routes: Combined Defence Services Exam, Air Force Common Admission Test and NCC Special Entry.

Combined Defence Services Exam (CDSE)

When you get into the Air Force after passing the CDSE, you get a Permanent Commission, which means a career in the Air Force until retirement.

Eligibility:

  • This option is only open to men. You need to be between 20 and 24 years of age at the time of the start of the training period.
  • You need to clear your BA/BSc/BCom course from a UGC-recognised university. You also need Physics and Maths as compulsory subjects in Class XI-XII. Or you can come from a BE/BTech background.
  • Even if you’re a final-semester student, you can sit for this job exam by producing a degree certificate issued by your university as per the date stipulated in the advertisement for recruitment.
  • There is no cut-off mark at the graduation level to write this exam.

Air Force Common Admission Test (AFCAT)

You can apply to the Flying branch through AFCAT for a Short Service Commission (SSC), which has a duration of 14 years with no further extension. Both male and female candidates can apply.

Eligibility:

  • You need to be between 20 and 24 years when the Flying branch begins its training sessions. However, if you have a valid and current Commercial Pilot Licence issued by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA), your upper age limit is extended up to 26 years at the time of commencement of training.
  • You need to score 50% marks in Maths and Physics in your Class XII board exams.
  • You need a BA/BSc/BCom degree from a UGC-recognised university with an aggregate of at least 60%. Or you can do a BE/BTech with at least 60% aggregate.
  • You need to clear Sections A and B of the Associate Membership of the Institute of Engineers (India) exam or the Aeronautical Society of India exam from a UGC-recognised university with at least 60% aggregate.
  • Even if you are a final-year student, you can apply. In that case, you cannot have any backlog at the time of AFSB Testing and should produce a degree certificate issued by the university as per the date stipulated in the advertisement for recruitment.

NCC SPECIAL ENTRY

You can apply online for a spot in the Flying branch through the NCC Special Entry. You can apply to the Flying Branch as an Air Wing Senior Division ‘C’ Certificate holder of the National Cadet Corps (NCC). Both men and women can join the Air Force through this mode of entry. Permanent Commission is offered to men and Short Service Commission to both men and women.

Eligibility:

  • You must be 20-24 years old when the training starts. However, if you hold a valid and current Commercial Pilot Licence issued by DGCA, your upper age limit is relaxed to 26 years at the start of the training period.

  • You need at least 50% marks in Maths & Physics in your Class XII board exams.

  • You need a BA/BSc/BCom degree from a UGC-recognised university with at least 60% in aggregate. Or you need a BE/BTech with a minimum of 60% marks.

  • You need to clear Sections A & B of the Associate Membership of Institute Engineers exam or the Aeronautical Society of India exam from a UGC-recognised university with at least 60% aggregate.

  • You can apply even if you are a final year/semester student. In that case, you need not have any present backlog at the time of AFSB Testing and should produce a degree certificate issued by the university as per the date stipulated in the advertisement for recruitment.

  • You need a NCC Air Wing Senior Division ‘C’ certificate and validity of the certificate would be two years.

Last updated on 06 Nov 2021
22:32 PM
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