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IAF has maximum 13.69 per cent women officers: Govt

The figure of 3.9 per cent women officers in the Army has been estimated excluding those serving in medical and dental wings
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PTI   |   New Delhi   |   Published 09.12.22, 07:43 PM

The Indian Air Force has a maximum of 13.69 per cent women officers followed by six per cent in the Navy and 3.97 per cent in the Army, according to details provided by the government in Lok Sabha on Friday.

The data of women officers (excluding those serving in medical and dental branches) was till December 1 while the figure relating to the Army was upto July 1, Minister of State for Defence Ajay Bhatt said.


The figure of 3.9 per cent women officers in the Army has been estimated excluding those serving in medical and dental wings.

Bhatt said the percentage of women officers in the Army medical and dental branches was 21.25 per cent and it is 100 per cent in the Military Nursing Service (MNS) in the force.

The data of women in the Army under the 'junior commissioned officers/other rank' head has been put at 0.01 per cent.

Bhatt said the combat employment philosophy of women in the armed forces is a continuously evolving process and is regularly reviewed by the Indian Army.

At present, the women are being commissioned in Indian Army in 10 streams namely Corps of Engineers, Corps of Signals, Army Air Defence, Army Service Corps, Army Ordnance Corps, Corp of Electronics and Mechanical Engineers, Army Aviation Corps, Intelligence Corps, Judge Advocate General Branch and Army Education Corps in addition to the Armed Forces Medical Services as Doctors and Military Nurses which is a women only entry.

Referring to the Army, he also listed new Avenues such as grant of permanent commission to short service commissioned women officers, induction of women cadets in NDA and recruitment of women as "Provost JCOs/OR".

Bhatt said the induction of women as officers in the Indian Navy commenced in the year 1991.   "Since then the Indian Navy has gradually opened all branches to women officers including induction through NDA. Further, for the first time women are also being recruited for sailors' entries under the Agnipath Scheme from 2022 and 20 per cent vacancies are reserved for women," Bhatt said.

About the Indian Air Force, he said recruitment officers in the force is gender neutral.

"The experimental scheme to induct women officers in all combat roles, initiated by the IAF in 2015 has now been regularised into a permanent scheme. Such a gender neutral approach is facilitating the employment of women officers of IAF in all combat roles without any restrictions," he said.

"No study has been undertaken regarding the low participation of women as there has been a steady growth in the induction of women in the armed forces," he added.

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